The Skegness Herald Newspaper Issue 1 30th June 1882
In the first issue, the Skegness Herald introduces itself to the public. We can at once get a feel for the flowing, flowery style of journalism peculiar to the day.
Though I am no journalist, I have tried to transcribe the introductory article into the modern style:
The next article appears in the first issue of the Skegness Herald, and serves to introduce the holiday resort, its local attractions and pleasant amenities.
It reports that several alterations have taken place since the close of the 1881 season. These include the building of more high quality hotels and general improvements, whilst the older hotels continue to promote excellent service to their patrons.
The Pleasure Gardens were greatly improved by the erection of several rustic features. The report tells us that the Pavilion in the Pleasure Gardens was the venue for balls, dancing and other entertainment.
The new eight acre Cricket Ground is re opened for the season and a pavilion has been erected. The article confirms that the Cricket Ground is the property of the Earl of Scarbrough.
A new pier, 1843 feet long, has been newly erected and is now open to the public.
The drainage works are reported to now be complete, every house in the town being drained, the sewage being conveyed inland leaving the sea and the beach free from contamination.
An abundant supply of water was reported to have been secured by means of sinking artisan wells into the green sand foundation. This water bearing strata was apparently the best in the Kingdom.
Gas ‘of superior quality’ is supplied to houses and public buildings, whilst effective lighting is installed on Grand Parade and the main streets.
Of course, the ‘new church’ (St Matthew’s) is erected.
Earl of Scarbrough and National Schools
The Skegness Herald makes an announcement that the Right Hon. the Earl of Scarbrough will shortly provide an excellent alternative water supply for the town, at a cost of many thousands of pounds, which is to be borne by himself. The report adds that the Earl has the welfare and interests of the townsfolk at heart.
The newspaper then moves to an article about the National Schools in Skegness.
The ratepayers in Skegness are faced with the decision of whether to pay a voluntary tax of 4d in the pound or let the schools be governed by the School Board. The newspaper urges the townspeople to choose the former option, citing a case in London where, under the School Board ‘machinery’, taxpayers had seen an increase from 2d in the pound to an extortionate 2s 6d in the pound.
Interestingly, the article says that presently the National Schools in Skegness are self-supporting, and when the present debts are paid off, the schools will run themselves without the cost of the ratepayer. An obvious contract to the modern day.
We are pleased and thankful for the encouraging support we received when we announced the launch of this newspaper. The citizens of Skegness, along with those of nearby villages have voiced their support for a Skegness newspaper and the way we have launched it. It has been more popular that we could begin to hope. We hope that the Herald will contribute to history. We feel a little nervous about taking on such a great task especially amongst the more experience press in England. It’s surprising that a resort like Skegness with its increasing popularity hasn’t had a newspaper before now, especially when less important towns already have weekly newspapers reporting local events. A local newspaper is well overdue here for reporting local events and for giving the public a chance to air their views. We recognize that our readers will have different tastes and we will try to cater for all. The most important thing for us is ‘truth’. If we make a mistake we will correct it, but we aim to report as accurately as possible. The Herald is ‘going it alone’, so we hope our readers will be patient with us.
Political and Racial Unbias
The newspaper will be unbiased politically, working for the interest of the community, and racially, and we will try to exclude things that might be objectionable to some people, both in the news articles and in advertisements. Letters to the editor are welcome, as are advertisers. In upholding the values of truth and integrity, the Herald hopes to secure a large circle of readers.