bank holiday justiceJust over five months ago, Retail Newsagent received a deluge of letters from readers who were hugely disappointed with the service they received from their wholesaler regarding their newspaper supplies.

Reduced supplies from publishers and wholesaler-made changes to retailers’ orders for the bank holidays over Christmas and the New Year, left many without enough copies to satisfy their customers.

Independents’ outrage prompted a campaign by RN to fight for better allocation to retailers during all bank holiday periods.

Wholesalers and publishers pledged support for the campaign, and published information and amendment-to-order deadlines in a bid to ensure newspaper supplies were more accurate for both the Easter weekend and the Royal wedding weekend.

With the majority of retailers who placed their bank holiday orders with their wholesaler by the set date, reporting that they received the supplies they required, the exercise has been hailed a success.

Of course these were only two of the bank holidays weekends for the year, so wholesalers still have a lot of work to do to prove the problem is truly being rectified. However, Smiths News has already sent out a letter to its customers informing them of the timings and deadlines for advising newspaper supply requirements for the forthcoming Whitsun bank holiday at the end of the month.

It’s fair to say the issue of allocation is ongoing, but the steps that have been made since the beginning of the year at least acknowledge the problem and possibly represent a change in attitude towards the independent sector.

We look forward to hearing from you in June to find out whether you received the correct number of newspapers for your store.