Huge Archant boost for Ipswich
A HUGE vote of confidence in Ipswich was the verdict as The Evening Star's £1.5 million printing press extension was unveiled. The mayor of Ipswich, Coun Richard Risebrow, said he was thrilled that Archant, publisher of The Evening Star, had made such a significant investment in the infrastructure of Ipswich at the company's Lower Brook Street base on the edge of the town centre.
A HUGE vote of confidence in Ipswich was the verdict as The Evening Star's £1.5 million printing press extension was unveiled.
The mayor of Ipswich, Coun Richard Risebrow, said he was thrilled that Archant, publisher of The Evening Star, had made such a significant investment in the infrastructure of Ipswich at the company's Lower Brook Street base on the edge of the town centre.
Mr Risebrow, accompanied by wife Shirley, unveiled a gold plaque to mark the installation of the new unit, which will double the colour capacity of The Star, currently Britain's Evening Newspaper of the Year.
The press was built in Nantes, France, by multi-national firm Goss Graphic Systems Limited. UK and European executives travelled from their base in Preston to be at the ceremony.
Mr Risebrow said: ""This new press unit is a big confidence boost for the town - companies like Archant don't take the decision lightly to invest like this.
"The Star is one of the key players in Ipswich and I hope this new press will continue to keep the newspaper at great heights. It is another super era for our evening newspaper!"
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The new unit, built, assembled and installed over the last nine months, was given a Royal seal of approval on July 17 when The Queen inaugurated it by remote control from Felaw Maltings while on her jubilee visit to the town.
After unveiling the plaque, Mr Risebrow pushed the switch to kick off printing of yesterday's editions of the Star.
Evening Star editor Nigel Pickover and Peter Dodds, managing director Archant Print, both paid tribute to the production staff who kept working hard while the new press was installed.
Mr Pickover said: "They've kept the Star going brilliantly well on one hand whilst installing and testing the new unit on the other. It is a hugely important development for us and for our sister weekly titles which are printed on the Ipswich press."
Graham Wells, senior production manager, Archant Print, said this was a major event in the history of the paper.
"It will double the colour in the paper, but it also has meant we've needed to modernise the rest of the press to accommodate it.
"This press is electronically driven, making it easier and cleaner than the current one. At the moment we are introducing a further eight pages of colour every Monday and by November half the paper will be colour.
"Next Thursday's paper will include a 24-page autumn property guide in full colour and 24 pages of news, making a total of 48 colour pages - the most ever!"
* The Evening Star is Evening Newspaper of the Year in the Press Gazette awards and Daily Newspaper of the Year in the BT awards for the south and south east. Its website is Website of the Year in the same BT awards.