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Hold the front page! Newspaper office contents under the hammer

Posted: 22/10/2020

The contents of the former news offices of the Southern Daily Echo newspaper, including elements of its archive and history, are to be auctioned next month by leading industrial auctioneers Walker Singleton.

The auction, which features almost 1,000 lots, is taking place following the decision by Newsquest, the owners of the Southampton-based Echo, to close its offices in Test Lane.

Howard Eastwood, Director of Machinery & Business Assets at Walker Singleton commented: “The contents provide a wonderful snapshot of the British newspaper industry. They include 200-year-old antique  printing presses; a plethora of regional paper archives, ephemera and memorabilia; and over 200 computers, 200 workstations and a range of assets from fitness to catering which supported Echo journalists and printers.

“We will also be auctioning high-specification fire protection systems, water treatment and data centre equipment, so the scope and scale of the lots is wide. The sale encompasses all of the remaining assets from Test Lane.”

Mr Eastwood said that he expected strong interest from a diverse range of buyers from across the UK.

“Local historians, archivists and sporting memorabilia collectors will surely be drawn to the library of back copies of the newspaper and sporting almanacs. Meanwhile the high-quality office furnishings by the likes of Herman Miller will attract specific attention, as will the extensive range of premium-brand IT.”

He added “Following early media exposure and general awareness of the disposal within the print industry, the auction already has traction. Bidding is now open to anyone who registers with us at www.walkersingleton.co.uk and we fully expect focus on the auction to increase as we move toward a close on November 5.”

This high-profile instruction runs concurrent with Walker Singleton’s ongoing involvement in the sale of the printing presses of the Barnsley Chronicle on behalf of the liquidators of Yorkshire Web Offset Limited.