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Independents were dismayed to find a full wrap covering the front page of The Sun as a major news story was unfolding.
The siege in France following the massacre of 12 people at the offices of satirical weekly Charlie Hebdo hit front pages across the world on Friday.
However, The Sun, which has always maintained that “front pages sell newspapers”, was hidden behind a Tesco wraparound.
Dan Cock, of Premier Whitstone Stores in Devon, said many of his customers had been confused by the wrap and had taken it off before buying the paper.
“It was a big news day, and I understand that these things are probably planned months in advance, but it was incredibly bad timing.
“We ended up taking them all off after a while and chucking them in the bin. If it had been a quieter news day, we probably would have left them on, but customers were looking for that front page on Friday.”
NFRN head of news Brian Murphy added: “On one of the most important news days, it is puzzling that The Sun would decide to hide its front page behind a wraparound and possibly deter people from buying the newspaper.”
A spokesman for The Sun said: ” The massive reach of The Sun is always very attractive to advertisers and cover wraps are important to us as we continue to invest in the world-class journalism people want to read every day.
“The Sun has made an unprecedented investment in independent retailers over the last year rebranding over 8,000 local shops and offering ongoing support via a national field team.”
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