LAUNCHING ON MONDAY THE 1ST OF MARCH 2021

It’s taken just over 2 years of planning and development, and thanks to your support we are on the verge of launching The National Wales. Wales’ NEW national newspaper and digital news service.

Our website www.thenational.wales is live along with our social channels, existing @newmediawales followers on Twitter may have noticed, courtesy of Twitter, that our account handle has already changed to @NationalWales and you can now follow The National Wales Facebook and Instagram accounts.

The website carries our mission statement ahead of the launch of our service in full.

We have begun recruiting, creating new jobs in journalism in Wales as promised. We will be recruiting further journalistic staff as soon as our subscription numbers allow.

To deliver a truly national service in both print and digital, we have partnered with Newsquest Wales, Newsquest is a subsidiary of US media company Gannett Media, one of the world-leading media companies.

Why is this important?

Newsquest Wales, HQ’d in Newport, publish several local titles across Wales, as the map demonstrates, employing around 50 journalists. We will, overnight, have a substantial network of journalists based within communities in all 4 corners of Wales. We will be able to report news on an all-Wales basis.

Our staff will be based in Wales.

Where there are gaps in coverage, we will look at employing journalists based in those communities.

Newsquest is also part of the Local Democracy Reporting scheme giving us access to important content and enabling us to explain how local government functions in Wales.

Newsquest also publishes several titles in Scotland, including The Herald and The National, allowing us to report on devolved matters in a more rounded fashion.

Newsquest allows the service to benefit from existing digital infrastructure, ensuring a secure service, legal advice and employment support. Newsquest is investing a substantial amount themselves; they are paying for the 4 new journalistic posts and their “in-kind” support would cost well into seven figures if we were setting up from scratch. This at a time when the news industry is facing substantial falls in revenues due to the pandemic.

The new service will have editorial independence if you want examples of what this means in practice look no further than The Herald and The National in Scotland.

The partnership also makes it feasible to produce a regular print copy, distributed nationally and available at a wide range of retailers.

By developing a truly national service at scale, one that has the ability and capacity to challenge politicians from ALL parties, at ALL levels, and one that can create high-quality content relevant to the platform it is being created for we can reach people, here in Wales, and take stories from Wales to global audiences.

This is just the beginning, the more subscribers we attract, the more we can invest in the service.

At launch we will focus on news and politics in Wales, as we grow, we will be creating more jobs in journalism, covering business and the economy, arts and culture and the environment and rural affairs.

We will create content specifically designed for education, informing young people about how Wales works and how they can play a part in its future. Developing digital skills amongst young people.

We will work collaboratively with existing content creators and experts to develop a unique Welsh sports service and develop lifestyle content with a focus exclusively on Wales.

And what of New Media Wales?

Securing a truly national news service, one that is politically neutral, one that delivers quality content, one that can lead a national conversation about the future of Wales was the goal when we set out. We are within a few weeks of achieving that. We will not have any editorial influence on the service, an independent editorial board made up of individuals that are representative of Wales in 2021 is being formed, this board will ensure the output is politically neutral and gives fair and adequate coverage across a range of agreed subjects.

New Media Wales will work in partnership with Newsquest Wales on The National in the production of regular audio and video content, supporting the services journalists to bring you the latest news from across Wales.

We are now developing National Sound & Vision, creating exclusive supporter content that will have the potential of leading the news agenda in Wales, giving Patreon supporters exclusive access to content, events and discussions. The first of these will be a live Q & A with The National Wales editorial team pre-launch.

Regular video interviews with people from all walks of Welsh life, including political leaders and policymakers. Video discussions and panel debates. Weekly podcasts.

Our long-term aims are highly ambitious, we want to create more choice in Wales, an alternative to Radios Wales and Cymru, LBC, TalkRadio, Radio 4 and 5live. Bringing news to the whole of Wales on smartphones and digital assistants every day of the year.  

This is just the beginning, we are proud of what is about to be launched, we hope you are too.

 Without your vision and support, we could never have reached this point.

For all of Wales

Diolch

Huw Marshall

New Media Wales

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