The New European, a national weekly newspaper, aims to be a platform for debate and dialogue among the 48 per cent of people who voted for the UK to stay in the EU
A new weekly newspaper aimed at Remain voters of the EU referendum has launched, in a bid to unite British citizens left disappointed with the victory of the Leave campaign.
The New European, whose first issue was released last week (8 July), was conceived as a ‘pop-up paper’, having made it from concept to the newsagents in just nine days – “faster than any other British newspaper in history”.
Matt Kelly, chief content officer at Archant and launch editor of the paper, explained how The New European hopes to be a “badge of honour” for the 48 per cent of people who voted to remain in the EU, reflecting their views.
“The morning after the referendum I was struck by how profound the sense of dismay was amongst people who voted to stay, and I think the finality of what had happened was hitting people quite hard,” said Kelly.
“I thought there should be a printed product that reflected the values of the 48 per cent and became a platform for their debate and dialogue, and also for lots of other great content about Europe itself.”
After discussing the idea with his colleagues on a Tuesday, a team of nine staff members developed the design and content of the paper, ready to be sent to print on Wednesday the following week.
“It was a paper of the moment, so we had to be really quick – it was incredibly stressful but we wanted to get it out there while people were still very engaged in the topic.”
The design for the newspaper, which costs £2 in print and is also available as an app, takes inspiration from European newspapers such as Flemish title De Morgen. It was also specifically printed in a Berliner size, which gave the publication a European feel.
Kelly explained that although the paper was born as a result of the Brexit vote, its content doesn’t just focus on the Leave victory – instead, it takes the time to celebrate what Europe has to offer.
“We didn’t want to make the whole paper all about Brexit because that would make it a little bit depressing.
“So we’ve got half the paper as an eclectic celebration of Europe, such as a ‘What’s On’ spread and features about different countries in Europe,” he said.
“There was a general policy that we would steer clear of getting politicians talking in the paper – they have plenty of other platforms to be heard on, and would instead try to over-emphasize people with expertise in their field from around Europe.”
The New European will initially run for just four issues, while any subsequent print runs remain to be decided according to readers’ interest.
“With pop-up publishing, you can produce a new newspaper really quickly, with a relatively low cost base and try and seize the moment, but you also have to be quite prepared to pop back down once that moment has passed,” said Kelly.
“If the desire for The New European disappears, we’ll disappear as well, and that won’t be a crisis – it is part of the plan.
“But if it happens that people want it to carry on, we will carry on doing it for as long as people want it.”
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