Anorak | The Last News Of The World Editorial

The Last News Of The World Editorial

by | 9th, July 2011

THE last News of The World editorial:


“IT is Sunday afternoon, preferably before the war. The wife is already asleep in the armchair, and the children have been sent out for a nice long walk. You put your feet up on the sofa, settle your spectacles on your nose and open the News of the World.”

These are the words of the great writer George Orwell. They were written in 1946 but they have been the sentiments of most of the nation for well over a century and a half as this astonishing paper became part of the fabric of Britain, as central to Sunday as a roast dinner.

An advertisement for our first ever edition on Sunday, October 1, 1843, announced the News of the World as “the novelty of nations and the wonder of the world… as worthy of the mansion as the cottage.”

That has informed our journalism through six monarchs and 168 years. We lived through history, we recorded history and we made history from the romance of our old hot-metal presses right through to the revolution of the digital age.

In our first Christmas Eve edition, for example, on December 24, 1843, we reviewed and told the story of a new novel by a writer published just a week earlier: A Christmas Carol, by Charles Dickens.

Fortunately we gave it a good review and, like us, it became part of a national heritage. In May 1900, we broke the news of the relief of Mafeking on the same evening details first arrived in London, the only newspaper to do so.

We also recorded the death of Queen Victoria, the sinking of the Titanic, two world wars, the 1966 World Cup victory, the first man on the moon, the death of Diana… the list goes on.

But we also recorded and most often revealed the great scandals and celebrity stories of the day. Many of them are recalled in this final edition of the News of the World.

In sport, too, we have led the way with the best, most informed coverage in the country a tradition we have upheld proudly since 1895, when we published our first soccer report (quickly followed by the first picture album: Famous Footballers 1895-1896, proving that some things never change!)

But we touched people’s lives most directly through our campaigns. In the 19th century we crusaded against child labour.

Our more modern campaigns have famously included the fight for Sarah’s Law, which has introduced 15 new pieces of groundbreaking legislation including the crucial right of parents to information about paedophiles living in their area.

This year we forced the government into a U-turn to enshrine the Military Covenant in law.

At Christmas, we delivered toys to the children

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