Declining circulations for Daily Record etc, Liverpool Echo’s Victory Parade coverage

EVERY time you see yet another article in the Scottish press attacking Celtic – and today’s feature by Keith Jackson in the Daily Record certainly falls into that category – the thing to do is to nip over to the newspaper trade title Press Gazette to check the latest circulation figures for this paper and some of the others including its sister paper the Sunday Mail.

The latest set of monthly figures cover the month of April, the circulation figures for May will be out mid June. So how did Keith Jackson’s newspaper do in April? Not very well.

The historical backdrop is of these two sister newspapers selling hundreds of thousands of copies a day. The Record used to sell around 800k copies per day while Sunday Mail at one stage managed to get over 1million sales per edition, as indeed did the Sunday Post.

Many families in Scotland would get the Mail and the Post on a Sunday and would get the Daily Record on the other six days of the week. How times have changed.

In April 2019 all three newspapers mentioned above recorded significant year on year declines in circulation, one for the first time ever can no longer claim to see over a hundred thousand copies per week while the other two aren’t far away from falling into that category themselves.

In the National newspaper circulations for April 2019 (source ABC), the Daily Record sold 117,094 per day which is a decline of 10% on the same month in 2018.

Its sister paper, Sunday Mail, also sold 117k copies for each edition in April 2019, the exact figure was 117,328, so slightly more that Daily Record but its percentage decline from the same month the year before was higher at 13%.

And the poor old Sunday Post fell below the 100k sales threshold for the first time in its long history, ‘selling’ 99,507 copies per edition in April 2019, a drop of 16% year on year. And this figure includes 538 copies that are described as ‘bulks’ – these are for example the free copies of papers you can pick up before boarding a flight.

Others Scottish newspapers such as Evening Times, Herald and Scotsman do not report their circulation to ABC on a month to month basis, but do so bi-annually as regional newspapers. None of these titles have a better story to tell regarding their own circulations – indeed it’s fair to say that the Evening Times in particular is performing particularly badly.

Last week we criticised them for running a major story on the mess that Celtic fans had caused after the poorly planned open top bus parade. Yesterday in Liverpool a much bigger parade happened as the city welcomed home former Celts Virgil Van Dijk – the man of the match in the Champions League Final and Andy Robertson together with their teammates and of course the European Cup (well down to the to Bhoys).

750,000 people packed onto the streets win and around Liverpool city centre to welcome home the Champions League winners – and the Liverpool Echo covered the celebrations really well, with a very positive approach. There would have been a mess – litter etc all have been dropped at this large scale gathering and teams of council workers would have been deployed in a clear-up operation – without the need for a headline like the one we saw last week in Glasgow’s evening newspaper.

“Celtic fans blasted for leaving Glasgow in ‘disgusting’ state following treble treble street party” was the Evening Times headline – here’s the link to the story…

Checking on the ABC website, The Evening Times records an ABC figure of 18,204 sales per edition over the period July-December 2018, while for the same period the Liverpool Echo sells 32,257 copies per edition.

Winning the Champions League is pretty special as recognised by the Liverpool Echo in their coverage of the Open Top Bus Parade, so is winning a Treble Treble, but the Evening Times used the rubbish left over to attack the Celtic Supporters.

About Author

The Celtic Star founder and editor, who has edited numerous Celtic books over the past decade or so including several from Lisbon Lions, Willie Wallace, Tommy Gemmell and Jim Craig. Earliest Celtic memories include a win over East Fife at Celtic Park and the 4-1 League Cup loss to Partick Thistle as a 6 year old. Best game? Easy 4-2, 1979 when Ten Men Won the League. Email

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