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Remembering CET 1959-2012

Remembering CET 1959-2012

Coventry Evening Telegraph building history

An Interview with John Ross-Barnard

In this interview, John Ross-Barnard Reflects on his time working at Coventry Cable, and the time spent interacting with those who worked at the CET Building.

Credit – Andrew Cardinal

Pre-building (for reference only)

1871 Paper founded as The Midland Daily Telegraph by William Isaac Iliffe. Sold for half penny as four-page broadsheet

1940 Only day unable to publish due to blitz

17 Nov 1941 Changed name to Coventry Telegraph

Inside CET building (157 Corporation Street, Coventry, CV1 1FP)

21 Nov 1957 Foundation stone laid by Lord Iliffe GBE.

1st July 1959 Building Opens

1967 After 96 years of ownership by the Illife Family, American Ralph Ingersoll II bought the controlling interest of the Iliffe family’s newspapers.

1970s The Evening Telegraph had a regular consumer page called Watchdog, which was edited by Ken Burgess. Subsequently, the BBC used the same name for what became its long-running Watchdog series

1985 The local independent radio station (then known as Mercia Sound) and the Telegraph formed the Snowball Appeal, a charitable organisation whose aim is to raise money to help sick and needy children in Coventry and Warwickshire

1997 Became part of the then Mirror Group (prior to its merger with Trinity to become Trinity Mirror)

1991 Managing director, Chris Oakley, led a management buy-out creating Midland Independent Newspapers. In 1997, Midland Independent Newspapers was sold for £297 million to Mirror Group

1998-99 The Pink became the first regional evening newspaper to provide same day reports from all FA Premiership matches
1999 Mirror Group merged with the regional newspaper group Trinity

April 2004 End of The Pink sports publication as part of paper

28 Oct 2004 Printing ceases in the CET building. It gets printed in Birmingham.

2 Oct 2006 The publication changed from an evening paper to a morning paper. To reflect this change, the newspaper’s name changed to Coventry Telegraph. The switch to a morning paper saw a change in emphasis with the printed edition concentrating on exclusive and community news, leaving breaking news to its website.

30 July 2012 The paper moved its headquarters to Thomas Yeoman House at Coventry Canal Basin, in Leicester Row. The decision by the proprietors was a consequence of the changing patterns of work at the paper (and the industry in general). With the number of staff reduced and no longer needing the space for the discontinued printing presses, it was decided that a smaller, more modern headquarters was now necessary.

Summer 2014 The newspaper began a social media campaign entitled #bringCityhome, which helped ensure Coventry City F.C.‘s return to the city following their exile at Sixfields in Northampton. The campaign drew praise from national media and figures within the football world. It was shortlisted at the Press Gazette British Journalism Awards 2014 in the Campaign of the Year category and Simon Gilbert, who spearheaded the campaign, was nominated for Sports Journalist of the Year.

10 Jan 2017 Developer buys Coventry Evening Telegraph offices to turn into boutique hotel

Jeremy Vine’s brief history of Coventry since the Blitz

In a special live broadcast from the old offices of the Coventry Evening Telegraph, Jeremy Vine celebrated the music, culture and industry of the West Midlands city. Through a series of chats with a variety of interesting people, we learned about the ups and downs of the city’s fortunes since the infamous destruction it suffered at the hands of the German Luftwaffe in World War Two. Here’s some of the highlights.

The Coventry Blitz

Post-war architecture

Coventry’s influence on The Specials’ music

The Coventry Evening Telegraph

Coventry’s car industry

The spirit of the city