Newsplan in the East Midlands and East of England

Access the Newsplan database

Some of the country’s oldest newspapers have been published in the East Midlands region. Newsplan was a major project to preserve, list and microfilm the historic runs of local newspapers held in the regions and in the national library collection.

The Newsplan East Midlands group brought together the libraries across the East Midlands and East of England to work in close co-operation to deliver the Newsplan project.

Through this website, you can search for a newspaper title, for newspapers connected with a particular town or county, or to find out what newspapers were published in a particular year in the East Midlands and East Anglia region.

Old Suffolk newspapers shed light on family’s theatrical ancestor

Suffolk Record Office received an enquiry from the Theatre Royal about an actor manager called John Brunton who was working on the East Anglian theatre circuit in the late 18th century.

Relevant copies of the Bury and Norwich Post (the local newspaper) from 1793 and 1799 were identified and several references were found :

“Mr Brunton, Manager of the Theatre in Ipswich gives the takings of a night’s performance to buy warm clothing for British soldiers serving on the continent.”

“Mr Brunton of Ipswich Theatre made a donation to the poor from profits.”

“Mr Brunton gave a speech of thanks for the most successful season ever in Bury Theatre”

“Mr Brunton gave a free benefit performance at Colchester Theatre for the widows and orphans of Nelson’s ‘Victory’.”

“Mr Brunton was given a good review for his performance in ‘Hamlet'”

The family came to visit the Theatre and called into the Record Office to thank the staff for the information discovered, amazed that it was still possible to access these old newspapers which gave so much family history information.

Norfolk’s 19th Century banking scandal

Another example of how local historic newspaper research may shed new light on stories reported nationally (in this instance in The Times): Norfolk newspapers research Word document

Additional historic newspapers available through public libraries

Some East Midlands and East of England libraries subscribe to the 19th Century British Newspaper database and also the British Newspaper Archive. See: listings of electronic resources available in Regional libraries


Please note: NEWSPLAN databases list permanent collections of historic newspapers kept in local public libraries or archive offices, for purposes of research or interest. This is not a complete listing of newspaper titles currrently in print. In addition, some East Midlands newspaper titles may only be held at the British Library and not held locally. For information about current newspaper publications try Willings Press Guide in the reference section of your local public library.