TrinityMirror has announced it will abandon attempts to sell its regional newspaper operation in the Midlands.

The firm says the bids recieved for the Midlands group – which includes The Birmingham Post, Evening Mail, Sunday Mercury and Coventry Telegraph – along with the titles based in the South East, did not match their valuation.

It waits to be seen whether this is good news for the Midlands titles and The Birmingham Post in particular.

The Post has been chronically under-resourced by TrinityMirror for years, starved of investment and unable to recruit sufficiently so that it was unable to capitalise on the economic regeneration of Birmingham and the wider West Midlands. The paper has targeted the business community and should be boasting circulation figures close to six figures, given the profile it enjoys within the region and the fact it does not have a serious daily rival.

But the chronic lack of resources have severely hampered a succession of editors. The current editor, Marc Reeves, has enjoyed some relative success in terms of circulation and has undertaken a minor revamp of the title.

Yet the Post, along with all the other Midlands titles, is in dire need of investment to keep pace with technology and with the changing requirements of its readership.

TrinityMirror plans to concentrate on developing a “multi-platform media business” in the Midlands, along with its other remaining titles around the country. Whether this will be enough to reverse a decade of neglect is uncertain.

Birmingham and the Midlands needs strong, well-read and quality newspapers like The Birmingham Post, whether TrinityMirror can deliver such titles remains open to debate.


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