The weekly Bury Times was established by letterpress printer John Heap on 5 July 1855 as a 4 page publication, costing 1d. Heap was originally from Accrington and his son Thomas worked for him as a compositor.
The Times took an independent stance, favouring no political party, and declared in 1858 that it hoped to “always retain that independent position which will enable us freely to comment on public proceedings”.
In January 1858 the Bury Times adopted new type, enlarged its columns and hence the physical dimensions of the paper, which it boasted was now the largest paper in the district, although it remained 4 pages long. Average circulation for 1857 was claimed to be over 6,000 copies. It commented at length on the attacks it faced from a “jealous contemporary” aiming to convince readers that the Bury Times was partisan, a charge which the Times strongly refuted. It said of its rival “even his own friends are nauseated with the constant repetition of the party cry”.
On 15th December 1866, the Times increased to 8 pages priced at 1d halfpenny. In the debate on education, while fully supporting the widening of access to education, it was against the idea of compulsion. The paper maintained its independent stance, advocating progress and social improvement and reporting all news without party bias.
John Heap became an Alderman of Bury and owned the Bury Times until his death in 1887 when it was bought from his executors by Arthur Frank Bentley. It remained in the Bentley family until 1966, when it was bought by the editor, Wilf Wainscow and Harold Tomlinson. It was sold in 1983 to Johnston Press, who later sold it on to Newsquest.
For this newspaper, we have the following titles in, or planned for, our digital archive:
- 1855–1909 The Bury Times
This newspaper is published by Newsquest in Bury, Lancashire, England. It was digitised and first made available on the British Newspaper Archive in May 3, 2013 . The latest issues were added in Apr 20, 2016.