By Andrew Macdonald
Say It Ain’t So: Halifax Herald To Abandon The Casket Weekly Brand
The Antigonish newsweekly The Casket brand will be no more.
The Sarah Dennis- owned Herald is going to introduce a brand new news title to the Strait of Canso region, various well placed sources tell The Notebook.
Back in March, the Herald suspended print production of The Casket because it said the pandemic dried up newspaper advertisements.
Sources say later this month, the Herald, where Dennis husband is Mark Lever, the paper’s CEO, the company will roll out a new product to be called The Highland Wire.
In Antigonish, abandoning The Casket brand, which has been around since 1852 – well before Confederation, might not go over well with Antigonishers given the weekly’s deep heritage in this town.
But, the Herald is eyeing a four-county Strait of Canso distribution, reaching 24,000 folk in the region, as it places more weight on a newspaper wrapped around delivering retail flyers, than hard-hitting enterprise local community journalism.
The Casket’s 18-year long journalist, Corey LeBlanc, was one of 109 people recently laid off by the Herald and Saltwire – he is now writing for The Notebook, as we expand news coverage into Cape Breton.
Another long time Casket reporter, Richard MacKenzie, left the paper last fall and moved back to his native Truro.
The Casket became a freebie weekly four years ago after the Herald owners paid more than $1.2 million to buy the paper from the Church of Antigonish, in the last decade.