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Council leaders give backing to the Herald

Cumberland and Westmorland Herald Offices, PenrithEden District Council's chief executive and leader have expressed their support for The Cumberland and Westmorland Herald which is fighting for its survival after going into voluntary administration.

The 160-year-old paper announced this week that its 'future hangs in the balance' with KPMG administrators saying it would continue to trade the business for a short period while options were explored for a possible sale.

Chief executive Rose Rouse said she was 'very concerned' about the future of The Herald.

She added: "For 160 years the Herald has played a valuable community role in reporting on important events and providing a platform for people to discuss local issues and share information.

"These are challenging times for the local newspaper industry with printed media around the UK struggling to adapt to the impact of online advertising and social media, but we hope that a way can be found to keep independent journalism alive in Eden.

"The Council, alongside a range of partners can if needed, provide a range of support and advice for the employees of the company to assist them during this difficult time. Business advice and support will also be made available to the company if required.

"We wish editor Emily Atherton and all the Herald staff all the best in their fight to save the paper."

Council leader Virginia Taylor said: "We have been lucky to still to have an independent paper locally written by real reporters. Its quality has been recognised regionally and nationally, not least when it won Weekly Newspaper of the Year in 2013.

"It will be a real cultural and historical loss if the Herald ceases publication. I hope that a way can be found for the Herald to continue to chronicle the goings-on, values, concerns, and life events major and minor of people in Eden."