Search this site
Magazine launches & events 1975-1989
Magazines listed by cover date with most recent at top. Also with alphabetic
links to magazines on the right. Launches in other years
saw potential in Europe and the booming area of wordprocessing
October 1989. David & Charles Publishing. 40 pp.
Ed: Richard Bell
The advent of cheap wordprocessing
on computers such as the BBC Micro and the Amstrad PCW encouraged
of the Time Out spin-off 20/20 with Brando was on the cover
4 of the Time Out spin-off 20/20
April 1989. Time Out. £1.50; 180 pp. Ed: Don Atyeo
National critical guide to the coming month in the arts, mainly in the shape of film and music. Marlon Brando was on the cover of the launch issue (he'd just pulled out of Donald Cammell's Performance) and there were pieces on Peter Greenaway, Pet Shop Boys, Alan Parker and John Waters. Each issue carried a column by Julie
Burchill, who reviewed films before she'd seen them.
Batman was on the cover of the fourth issue of this short-lived spin-off
from Time Out (Sell-Out was another).
Description of the editor: 'Don Atyeo was a blunt Australian of scabrous good humour who could out-Kelvin MacKenzie' by later Time Out editor Dominic Wells in the British Journalism Review.
Time Out profile
put Dennis O'Neill on the cover as Don Carlo from Verdi's grand work
April 1989. Opera Now Enterprises. £2; 108 pp. Ed: Mel Cooper
The cover article highlighted an 11-page main feature, with Antonia
Fraser, Lord Harewood and others addressed the history and issues
raised by Don
magazines A to Z
Guide was Rupert Murdoch's attempt to break
into weekly TV listings in the UK as a European ruling forced Radio
Times and TV Times to relinquish their monopoly on programme
25 March 1989. Murdoch Magazines, London. 40p; 60pp. Ed: Ian Birch
Jason Donovan cover – fronting a feature and a competition to
win a part in Australian soap Neighbours. The title was given
a £5m advertising budget and the target circulation was
set at 350,000-400,000 copies. A 48-page sample title was stitched
into the March 18 issue of News of the World's Sunday magazine
to promote the launch.
Rupert Murdoch's interest in the sector was based on a move in
the US and the fact that the UK duopoly for TV listings held by
Radio Times and TV Times was to be broken up.
In 1988, News International had bought Triangle Publications,
which owned TV Guide, the market leader in the US selling
17m copies a week (it was founded in 1952). The company decided
to bring the concept to the UK, with managing director Liz Rees-Jones
announcing in January 1989 that it intended to launch a title to
take advantage of the breaking up of the listings monopoly. This
was triggered by a European Commission ruling. Several other publishers,
including Emap, were also planning launches - in fact 'a flood' of
launches was expected in the sector.
Media Week (6 January 1989) reported: 'The Commission's
ruling relates to a complaint by Irish publishers Magill, which
had tried to publish a weekly TV guide in competition with TV
Times and Radio
Times - which circulate widely in the Republic. The Commission
has ruled that TV and Radio Times' tight rein
on schedule information was contrary to Article 86 of the EC Treaty.
This ruling will now have to be considered by the UK Government,
which is bound by the Treaty.'
However, when TV Guide launched it could only carry details
of cable and satellite listings - the terrestrial pages were merely
summaries of the week's 'essential viewing'. Murdoch had to wait
for legislation to break the monopoly held by Radio Times and TV
Times. In December, Murdoch raised the guaranteed circulation
of TV Guide by 30,000 to 150,000 copies a week. It was selling
190,335 copies a week at the time. However, in the same month, the
company signalled a U-turn by deciding to turn the title into a subscriptions-based
monthly for satellite TV alone in March 1990 when the duopoly on
terrestrial TV listings lifted. A tough economic climate,
Rupert Murdoch's debts and the £50,000 charge by Independent
Television Publications for its listings put paid to the ambitious
In fact, recession set in, interest rates rose and the debt from
the US Triangle deal nearly sank Murdoch. He sold off most of his
magazine assets in the US and the UK.
See TV Choice
TV and film magazines
Vorderman on the front cover of The Software Show magazine
The Software Show
Spring 1989. BBC/Redwood Publishing, London. Free supplement with
Acorn User. 52pp. Group ed: Tony Quinn; ed: Geoff Bains.
Countdown presenter Carol Vorderman was on the front cover
of this magazine produced to support BBC TV's Software Show,
a day long live programme about computers which she presented.
Several pages were the result of DTP packages used on the show,
from Apple Macintosh, Amstrad PCW and Atari ST.
BBC Magazines profile
Redwood Publishing profile
up Kylie Minogue as its first target: 'The dog's bollocks or a talentless
1989 (publication date unclear). Big Mags, West Drayton, Middx; £1;
48 pages. Editor: Stuart Blair
"Not for boring bastards easily offended" - an attempt to do Viz with
more topless women. Double-page colour centre spread devoted to 'Blind Reader's
Wives' with Bouncing Bertha from Sheffield
and founder of Haymarket Publishing Michael Heseltine on the cover
of the first issue of GQ in the UK
December/Jan 1989. Conde Nast, London.
Paul Keers launches long-established US men's title (Gentlemen's
in UK. Tory politician and founder of Haymarket Publishing Michael
Heseltine on the cover
Conde Nast profile
Model Jerry Hall was on the cover for Carlton's £7.5 million launch
13 September-25 October 1988. Carlton / IPC, weekly. Ed: Sally O'Sullivan
Carlton's Riva aimed to have ‘the pace of a weekly with the gloss of a monthly’. Cost 50p and first issue had model Jerry Hall (Mick Jagger's girlfriend) on cover. At £7.5 million, the launch budget was then the largest in Britain. (Bauer's weekly Bella had cost £5m the previous year.) Riva was part of a response by Carlton and IPC owner Reed to incursions in the previous year - Marie Claire to compete with Elle and Vogue at the top end of the fashion market; Essentials, a practical monthly up against Prima; and Riva facing Best and Hello!.
Rogue Magazines' Raw was
bought by Emap within 7 months of its launch. The first issue carried an
Ozzy Osbourne flexi disc cover mount
Raw (Rock Action Worldwide)
31 August-13 September 1988. Fortnightly. Rogue Magazines, 3a Kendall
Place, London W1. £1. Stapled. 60pp.
Ed: Malcolm Dome; Managing ed: Dante Bonutto;
Art: Mike Simister
The first issue of this heavy metal title came with a free Ozzy Osbourne
flexi disc in clear plastic mounted on the front cover. Features covered
AC/DC, Metallica and a report on the Donington 88 festival. The centre
spreads was a poster of Deep Purple's Ian Gillan promoting the magazine's
'best of' poll.
The associate publisher was former pop star Jonathan King, shown dressed
in a schoolboy costume playing a guitar. In 2001, King was jailed for
four indecent assaults and two serious sexual offences on boys aged
14 and 15. He served half of the seven-year
In April 1989, Emap bought the title, which claimed a circulation of
up to 35,000. Sales rumbled along at 25,00-30,000 but the title always
trailed behind Emap's weekly Kerrang (which it had bought when
United Consumer Magazines was closed by the Express newspapers group
in 1991). In 1995, Emap took Raw off the shelves for several
weeks and relaunched it
in October with a sample issue free with monthly Select. The
aim was to base the title on pictures and news to complement Emap's Select an
additional, more frequent, read. However, it closed
within five months.
At home with Princess Margaret - a classic cover for Hello! (issue 28)
17 May. Weekly. 75p. Ed: Maggie Goodman
The Spanish publisher of Hola! circulated dummies of the magzine in February with a scheduled 12 April launch, but this was set back to May. The target circulation was 250,000 with a larger than A4 format, 148 pages, and ad/ed ratio of 33/67 (per cent).
Hello! marked the opening of a new niche, seeing itself as 'The only Good News weekly' witth an escapist format and its subjects giving aproval of the photographs. "We are bought as a treat,' Maggie Goodman told the Independent, 'like a box of chocolates.'
The magazine was part of a trend for European publishers to expand into the UK ahead of the country's entry into the European Community. It was printed in Madrid but with the last editorial being flown out on Thursday afternoon to be on sale in the UK the following Tuesday.
Celebrity price war
'How to spot a bullshitter' led to advertising for Excel being
April 1988. White Line Publishing. Ed: Rod Fountain
Main coverline "How to spot a bullshitter" led to its
advertising being banned on the London Tube and the editorial mix
under was seen as too yuppy; it soon folded (although the title
would be used again more than once in the next decade)
Men's magazines history
magazines A to Z
The advent of the
Apple Macintosh and Postscript software drove the launch of titles such as
April 1988. Emap, London. Controlled circulation;
56pp. Ed: Chris
Subtitle: desktop, design, communication. With advertiser response
card and survey to register for free copies
More! - 16-page fashion extra with the first issue. Centre
spread was a double gatefold. The two parts of the magazine came
in a plastic folder
6 April 1988 (fortnightly). Emap London Lifestyle, fortnightly.
55p; 64pp + 12-page fashion fold-out section + 24-page separate fashion section
Women's lifestyle/fashion title for 16- to 24-years-olds. The target reader
was single and at university or working and living at home.
More on Women's glossies A to Z
was the cover subject for this contract publishing title by Fitzroy for
Jan/Feb 1988. Free contract title for Computerland by Fitzroy. 34pp. Ed:
A contract magazine for Computerland Europe, a franchise distributor
of microcomputers, by PR group Fitzroy. Cover story based on an interview
with Lord Young, the minister who headed up the trade & industry
department under Margaret Thatcher. DTP was a theme throughout the issue,
with the contents page even crediting SMS 19" SuperMac monitors,
Quark XPress and an Agfa S200PC scanner used in the magazine's production
(by Tony Tyler).
M&S Magazine -
dummy issue. Felicity Green was editor of the 1.3 million print run contract title
November 1987. Redwood Publishing. Contract title for Marks and Spencer. Free/£1. Ed: Felicity Green
M&S Magazine was launched with a free circulation of a million copies to the retailer's charge-card holders, with hopes of selling another 300,000 copies in its shops for £1. Campaign described it as 'the 'biggest threat of the decade to upmarket women's titles' and said 'Good Housekeeping, Women's Journal and Options are watching the launch closely' (25 May 1984, p5).
It was estimated that two-thirds of ABC1 women aged 25-44 shopped at M&S at least once a month and the magazine followed customer magazine-catalogues from Harrods, Habitat and Laura Ashley. The editor was Felicity Green, who had worked on the Daily Mirror, Express (where Redwood co-founder Chris Ward had been editor) and Working Woman and was an editorial consultant for the Telegraph. Redwood art director Mike Lackersteen, who had been at Good Housekeeping, led the design team.
More on Women's glossies A to Z
The Digger got
off to a good start with 15 pages of advertising in a 40-page first issue,
but closed down within a year
9 October 1987. General Publications. 55p. 40pp. Ed & publisher:
Attempt at Private Eye competitor. Used better quality,
coated paper to attract colour advertising. The initial print run
Digger was reported as 120,000 copies. It was published
as a fortnightly on alternate weeks to Private Eye.
The first issue had 15 ad pages, including Renault (the four
colour centre pages), Ryanair and the Observer. The Times reviewed
the first issue and described it as a smooth but ugly pastiche
Private Eye, aimed at yuppies. In April, however, the
magazine missed an issue amid financial problems. It was reported
that about £100,000 was needed to keep it afloat, but Al-Fayed
Investments and Time Out refused approaches. Despite
the May 22 issue coming out, the magazine was forced to bring
in a liquidator.
Computing was born out of a merger of Redwood's School
Computer User and Emap's Educational Computing
October 1987-2004? Redwood, London. Controlled circulation/subscription.
68pp. Ed: Tony Quinn; publisher: Simon Goode
Acorn User had a big readership in schools that it wanted
to build on and schools were crying out for advice on using the computers
that were being given. The problem, for a new, small, publisher was
the cost of distribution. So Acorn User's editor, Tony Quinn
and publisher, Simon Goode, approached computer educational adviser
Mike Bostock for guidance on a deal with local education authorities:
they would take free magazines in bulk and distribute them to schools.
Redwood would make its money from advertising. Over 90% of the UK's
LEAs signed up for the deal. It was a unique idea and from it a quarterly
called School Computer User was launched. At about the same
time, Emap had decided to close its subscription-based monthly tabloid
format Educational Computing (the publisher of which was
Tom Moloney, who became chief executive of Emap in 2005). This had
been running for several years and had a subscription base of almost
10,000 copies, so Redwood bought the title. Redwood combined School
Computer User's distribution model and editorial strategy with
the name Educational Computing. The magazine's name was later
expanded to Educational Computing and Technology and it was
sold to ITT Publications.
based on US title Woman's World
October 5, 1987. H. Bauer. 29p;52pp.
Ed: Dennis Neeld
Bella was Bauer's British version of US title Woman's
World. LHS Brompton ran a mail drop promotion whereby 2 million copies
were put through doors, mainly in London. It was estimated that three
weeks after the launch, Bauer was printing 1.2m copies and selling about
680,000 of them.
of titles by both Gruner and Jahr (Prima and Best) and Bauer were
marked by the strategy of establishing copy sales before advertising.
This was a well established method in Germany, but new to the UK. G&J
was willing in to spend up to £10m on Prima before getting
any return. Prima was launched with only 12 pages of advertising
out of a total of 140 pages, but had 204 pages by autumn 1987, almost
half of which were advertising.
Practical Parenting took market leadership from Argus
April/May 1987. Family Circle/International Thomson, London.
80p; 100pp. Ed: Davina Lloyd
A spin-off from Family Circle. The first of a 'practical'
series of titles, the others being Practical Hairstyling
& Beauty, and
Practical Health & Slimming, that were sold in
supermarkets alongside Living and Family Circle.
Jill Churchill, editor of Family
Circle, was editor-in-chief
of the titles. Practical Parenting went monthly
in March 1988 and was sold to IPC in May. By mid-1989 it was selling
more than 150,000 copies a month and won the PPA's Consumer Publication
of the Year award.
The high birth rate at
the time led to a boom in such titles. The Argus group was the sector
leader with Mother, Mother & Baby and Parents,
but IPC wrested control.
issue with Paul McCartney as the main feature
October 1986. Emap Metro, London. £1.10; 100pp. Ed: Mark
Ellen; ed dir: David Hepworth; art dir: Andy Cowles
'Magazines tend to bracket people by taste, or what they assume
that taste to be,' said Ellen in the first issue. 'This is a magazine
that doesn't. but still brings you a wide range of news, comment,
interviews and insight. We don't presume to know what you like
but we hope you like this.'
A tip-on cover sticker promoted a 56-page
CD review booklet that was tipped on to a bound-in subscription
magazines A to Z
Dummy issue for Capital Magazine, which was to be handed out at rail
stations in London
26 June 1986. Capital Week Ltd, London. Ed: Lottie Weychan
Capital was an attempt to launch a weekly title for
London's commuters. It was to be handed out to homebound travellers
at British Rail stations in central London, and make its revenue
through advertising sales. The distribution figure was 150,000 copies.
The dummy issue shown here was made up of two identical 16-page sections
that were stapled together with a cover.
The publisher was Sally Cartwright and the advertisement director
Stephen Hart. Cartwright had been publisher of Ideal
Home and Woman's
Journal at IPC and went on to become managing director of
Harmsworth Publications (Associated Newspapers) in 1988 and then
publishing director of Hello! in
Electronic Publishing Now looked to exploit the DTP boom
April 1987. D2 Publishing, Croydon. Ed: Bruce Smith
Aimed at booming desktop publishing market in companies led by the Apple
Macintosh. Editor Bruce Smith had written many computer books and was the
former deputy of BBC Acorn User
Images - launch issue above and as a quarterly a year
October 1985. Emap McLaren, Croydon. £3. 56pp.
Ed: Bob Swain. Pub: Michael J. Eades
Supplement sent to readers of Audio Visual and Television
and Video Production. By October a year later it was a quarterly.
Action - a keyboard is reflected in the monster's eye
October 1985. Future, Somerton, Somerset. £1; 100pp. Ed: Peter
Connor. Pub: Chris Anderson
Aimed at Amstrad CPC games market. Chris Anderson had been editor
of Personal Computer Games and Zzap! 64 in London.
He moved to Somerton and founded Future with Amstrad Action.
The magazine focused on games reviews and playing them rather
than typing in listings, which was a core element of the user
magazines. The top of the front cover reads: 'Power-packed reviews
each month on the amazing CPC 464 and 664.' To the left of the
vertical masthead is another selling line: 'The mouldbreaking
magazine from Future Publishing.' The editorial describes how
the title was written on Amstrads and sent by modem to the typesetters,
who returned typeset copy for the editors to paste up. Anderson
was known as 'Ayatullah' by the staff and named newspaper tycoons
Robert Maxwell and Rupert Murdoch as his heroes.
'The best in country style' was offered by the first issue of Good Housekeeping's Country Living
Summer 1985. National Magazines. £1. 160+4pp.
David Bellamy, Susan Hill, Philippa Davenport and Eric Newby were among the featured authors for this first issue, promoted as Good Housekeeping's
Country Living. Coverage included: houses and gardens,
environment, food, fashion & beauty, crafts and leisure. There was a competition to win a Volvo 240DL estate 'the ultimate country car' according to a plug on the cover. One article was 'Weekenders: what do the neighbours think?'
Ed-in-chief: Charlotte Lessing; GH Group art director: Marie-Louise Avert; Editor: Jane Kirby; art ed: Francine Lawrence; Publishing Dir: Brian Braithwaite
National Magazine profile
itself as ‘Harder than the rest’ with Style Council's Paul
Weller on the cover holding a pair of boxing gloves
IPC/Holborn Publishing Group. 45p; 64pp. Ed: Phil McNeill; deputy
Paul Du Noyer.
The Hit billed itself as
‘Harder than the rest’ and featured a competition to win
a pair of WBA world featherweight champion Barry McGuigan's gloves.
It also carried a covermounted 4-track vinyl EP: Style Council,
Jesus and Mary Chain, Redskins and Simply Red
at Music magazines history
on the front of City Limits
Headroom on City Limits
24-30 May 1985. London Voice Ltd. 60p; 92 pp.
Eds: John Fordham & Nigel Fountain
The Max Headroom Show was a Channel 4 TV series based on a
supposedly computer-generated character (the name was inspired by the
sign on a car park in London's Soho). The character was created by
George Stone, Annabel Jankel and Rocky Morton and played by Matt Frewer.
Max fronted the series presenting music videos. Jankel and Morton also
wrote a book on computer graphics around the same time
Time Out profile
- tabloid paper that was folded in half to show A4 cover for newsagents'
April 1985. Duck Soup Pubs, London. £1; 32pp. Eds: Tom Johnston
and David Austin.
Tabloid newsprint cartoon title. A3 format folded to A4 to fit newsagents'
- the cover of this academic journal showed an computer image using fractal
Spring 1985. Journal of the Association of Teachers of Mathematics / Basil
Blackwell. £12.50/year; 68pp. Eds: Derek Ball & John Wood
Journal of the Association of Teachers of Maths
K - later issues featured a cartoon series drawn on an Apple
IPC Magazines, London. April 1984. 85p. 108pp. Ed: Tony Tyler; pub
dir: John Purdie
Games title with free cassette. Based on readers typing in games
listings. First issue had programs for the Commodore Vic20 and
64, Oric, BBC/Acorn and Sinclair Spectrum. In issue 12 (March
1985) it launched a comic strip - Shatter - drawn on an Apple
Macintosh, which claimed to be a world first (by Mike Saenz,
Peter B. Gillis and Mike Gold).
Fast Lane - the first issue with a Porsche 911 Carrera supertest
on the cover
April 1984. Business Press International (IPC). 116pp + gatefold cover. 90p.
Ed: Peter Dron (ex-Motor). Porsche 911 Carrera supertest on the cover with
6 pages inside. BMW M635 (4 pages); VW Golf GTi pitted against Nissan
Cherry Turbo, Vauxhall Astra GTE and Ford
Escort XR3i (6 pages). Other coverage: 360bhp twin-engined VW Scirocco, BMW
K100, BMW 318i , Toyota Corolla GT Coupe, Audi 200 Turbo, Renault 25
BBC Wildlife - bringing the red-eyed tree frog Agalychnis
callidryas to national fame
Wildlife before the BBC's relaunch, with a salamander, Ensatina
eschscholtzii, on its cover
November 1983. BBC Publications and Wildlife Publications, Bristol; £1;
56 pages. Editor: Rosamund Kidman Cox
The cover touted this as 'volume 1 number 1', but this was not a
new publication. It was the BBC's relaunch of Wildlife,
a title that had begun life in 1963 as Animals with
a television presenter, Armand Dennis, as editor. By 1983 it
was run by Wildlife Publications
Ltd, in London's Great Portland St.
The corporation retained many
of the staff, including the editor. The sub-A4 format was also
retained but the price rose from 75p.
BBC Wildlife joined the Radio Times and The
Listener in the BBC's publications division, which was part of BBC Enterprises.
Kidman Cox stayed as editor until 2004 when the BBC put the magazine under
the control of its Origin Publishing division, which it had recently bought. She
carried on judging the Wildlife Photographer of the Year Competition.
Update covered all the machine formats and put women on its
covers to appeal to male readers
February 1983. Argus, London. 75p; 124pp. Editor: Paul Liptrot
A feature on the British computer the Oric, reveals it was named after
Orac, from the Blakes Seven TV series.
Your Computer invents
December 1982. IPC, London; 60p;164 pages. Editor: Toby Wolpe.
At at time when computer discs were unknown outside the world of mainframes,
micro owners typed listings in by hand. With this plastic disc, played
at 33.3 rpm, computer programs could be input as binary sounds. Disc
held games for the Sinclair ZX81
TV Choice was
closed by legal action over listings copyright
November 1982. 25p
TV programme guide launched by Mr Michael Storey with an initial print
run of 100,000. The publishers had to give temporary High Court undertakings
that the magazine would not contain material copied without authority
from BBC or ITV schedules. However, TV Choice was forced to suspend
publication in January 1983 after both ITV Publications and BBC Publications
alleged that the magazine had breached their copyright.
Time Out still pressed ahead with a campaign to publish listings
in the face of legal action from the BBC and ITV.
A title with the same name was launched in Bauer
User one of the many machine-specific titles that thrived in
the 1980s. It eventually closed in 2005
July 1982- spring 2005. Addison-Wesley/Redwood/BBC/Europress. Editor
Successful title for BBC Micro users. Sold a year later to founders
of contract publisher Redwood Publishing, a company later taken over
by the BBC. Launched BBC titles such as Good Food and Gardeners'
BBC Magazines profile
Redwood Publishing profile
Murdoch's Sky debut
issue front cover with Nick Kamen and Charlotte Lewis
23 April 1982 (fortnightly). News International
and Hachette. 65p; 86pp (numbered). Ed: Ian Birch. Design consultant:
Nick Kamen and Charlotte Lewis were on the fold-out debut cover of
this ambitious fortnightly. The whole issue was a very complex
- gatefold front cover;
- cut-down page widths to delineate sections;
- 4 internal gate-folds.
Sky saw itself as 'a new magazine for a new generation'
at Men's magazines history
issue front cover
April 1982. Created and produced by Carlton Publishing; copyright IPC.
236 pp; 60p. Ed: Penny Radford.
Women's monthly with the selling line
'For your way you want to live now.' The spine copy read: 'Better
food/better homes/better fashion/better living'. Articles included Warren
Beatty profile; Shirley Williams interview; and columns by Simon
Hoggart and Libby Purves.
at Women's magazines A to Z
Science Now part work
Now (part work)
1982. Marshall Cavendish, London. 75p; 40pp plus an A2 poster (later issues
A weekly part work from the UK's biggest publisher in the sector.
the first issue; it was later bought by Conde Nast to become World of Interiors
November1981. Pharos Publications, Chelsea, London. £1.50; 208
pp. Editor-in-chief: Min Hogg;
Publisher: Kevin Kelly
Kevin Kelly set up Interiors and by 1983 it was half
owned by Condé Nast and had changed its name to World
of Interiors. In April that year, the magazine ran TV advertising,
with spots on Channel Four alongside repeats of Brideshead
Revisited. The magazine had increased its
circulation from 40,500 to 43,436 with 5,000 more copies going to
In 1984, World of Interiors was voted consumer magazine of
the year and Min Hogg editor of the year. Wendy Harrop, art director,
was runner-up in the design section. In December, Harrop was appointed
editor and creative director.
In 1985, Kelly persuaded Condé Nast and the Financial Times
to join with him in launching Business magazine. In 1988, Kelly
sold his interest (20%) in the two titles to Condé Nast. This
was because of his success in bringing US title W to
the UK as a fortnightly. It was selling 40,000 copies under editor Jane
Procter within 18 months of its launch (Queensgate Publications).
Hogg stepped down from World of Interiors in 2001, to be replaced
by her deputy Rupert Thomas. By then it was selling 65,000 copies a
music with fashion. Bow Wow Wow's Annabella Lwin was on the cover
November 1981. Teenage Kicks, London.
50p; 48pp Ed: Bert MacIver; design: Andy Dark.
The first issue of Kicks covered music, fashion, film and advice on
sex problems. It also published the lyrics and music to 'Play to Win' by Heaven
17. Annabella Lwin, 15-year-old singer for Malcolm McLaren's New Wave band Bow
Wow Wow was on the cover with an interview by Debbie Geller of US magazine Rolling
Stone. Only the centre 8 pages and cover were printed in colour
Music magazines history
City Limits first
issue cover in David King's constructivist style. The copy in the blue star says 'Incorporating "NOT..."', a news sheet the staff had put out while on strike at Time Out
'Psycho' Tebbit in action
A late City
cover with a photograph of US writer William Burroughs from 12 April 1990
October 9-15 1981. London Voice Ltd, 313 Upper Street, Islington, London
N1. Distributed by New Statesman. 40p. 92pp. Ed: John Fordham
City Limits was launched by many of the former
staff of Time Out (referred to, in a Private-Eyeish
way as Another London Magazine) who had left during a protracted
dispute after owner Tony Elliot ended the system of equal pay for
During the dispute, Time Out staff had produced a protest news sheet called Not Time Out and this is referred to in the blue star on the front cover of the first City Limits, which says 'Incorporating "NOT...".'
The launch issue's editorial states: 'Six months, innumerable
dismissals, several writs, threats, recriminations, sit-ins, lock-outs
and undignified rumbles later, we have brought you City
a paper that we think you'll agree was worth the fight.'
Cartoonist Steve Bell's Maggie's Farm
switched from Time Out with the first outing in City Limits portraying Norman Tebbit ripping off an interviewer's head on Maggie's
order 'Get him Psycho!'
director Carol Warren employed design consultant David
King to establish an immediately recognisable cover style on a
low budget. Christopher Wilson interviewed King for a 2003 issue of Eye and
described his work so: 'His graphic style – an easily recognisable
mix of explosive sans serif typography, solid planes of vivid colour
and emphatic rules – reworked
for the New Left in Britain the graphic language of the Russian
Constructivists.' Jeremy Leslie's book Issues:
New Magazine Design features a spread of City Limits covers.
King has a unique collection of Soviet imagery.
City Limits folded in the early 1990s.
Time Out profile
including City Limits and Time Out covers
Not ... (Time Out) issues 17 (September 11) and 18
Not ... (Time Out)
Not ... was produced by the staff of Time Out who were sacked. It was a free, tabloid format newspaper printed by East End Offset. Issue 17 was subtitled 'City Limits minus 4' because by then the staff had raised funding to relaunch in a magazine format. Under the headline 'City Limits out on October 8', the front page splash (alongside a photo of Labour MP Tony Benn reading an earlier copy of the free paper) stated:
'The new magazine produced by more than forty of the sacked staff of Time Out will be on the street on October 8. ... The cover price for 84 pp will be 40p - 10p cheaper than the old Time Out.'
The Greater London Council under left-wing leader Ken Livingstone funded the title. So it was ironic that the launch of City Limits was made possible by legislation brought in by the Thatcher government (from issue 18):
'Our new company will comply with the Tory government's new Small Business Start-up Scheme. This offers massive tax advantages both to private and business investors.'
City Limits was expected to have a turnover of £1.25 million in its first year.
Time Out profile
including City Limits and Time Out covers
The Face first issue cover
September 1980. Feet First Productions for Wagadon. 60p. 64pp. Ed: Nick Logan. Design: Feet First & Steve Bush Inc. Printed by Seven Valley Press
Jerry Dammers of the Specials was the first issue cover subject for The Face. The photo was taken by Chalkie Davies
The Face profile
a British news weekly funded by James Goldsmith
14-20 September 1979.
Cavenham Communications, London.
50p; 144pp. Ed:
James Goldsmith was behind this attempt to create a European-facing
British news weekly. It closed after about 2 years
The UK's first magazine
for microcomputer enthusiasts - in the days when you built your own
Personal Computer World
UK's first micro magazine. The title was closed down in spring 2009.
Computer magazine history
Sell Out first
issue cover. It was a spin-off from the London listings magazine Time Out
April 1975. Best Brands Ltd, 374 Gray's Inn Rd, London WC1X 8BB. 40p; 68pp;
A4 format. Ed: Janet Street-Porter; publisher: Tony Elliott
Spin-off from Time Out's Sell Out section, which listed
bargains and carried consumer information. Marketed as 'an indispensable
survival guide.' The cover used spot red but all the other pages were
in mono on uncoated paper. The cover matter was a thin card. All the
listings in the magazine were free. The editor was Janet Street-Porter
- Elliott's wife till 1978 - who was later to make her name on radio
and television and, in 1999, as editor of the Independent
on Sunday newspaper. In 2002 she became the paper's editor-at-large
and writes a column.
Time Out profile
Private View first
issue cover. The red box shows a face (possibly Sullivan?) shouting 'Nice one Harold!' as a pipe-smoking fisherman (prime minister Harold Wilson?) hooks the bikini bottoms off the bathing woman
March 1974. Roafield Publishing, Godwin Rd, Forest Gate, London E7. Published by David Sullivan. Edited by Miss Doreen Millington; assistant editor Paul Cufley; advertising by Charles Green. 32pp. No price.
Private View modelled itself, at least visually, on Private Eye, but its agenda was attacking pornography laws, the police and the way the press reported on adult book dealers. The publisher was David Sullivan, who was one of the biggest porn barons in Britain and boyfriend of porn actress Mary Millington. (In 2010, Sullivan bought a half stake in West Ham FC, the ground being about 2 miles away from the Forest Gate were Private View was published).
In the editorial, Doreen Millington states she has just launched a campaign to legalise pornography in her other title, Private Magazine (which was published from the same address). Such campaigning is also the theme of Private View. The cover summarises the contents as: ‘Satire, Politics, Social Comment, Sexy!’
The first feature, by Doreen Millington [later Whitehouse editor], is a diatribe against the press:
'I am fed up with the way the national press treat the adult book dealers - we all know that they use SEX to sell their papers; yet they refer to adult book dealers as 'Merchants of Menace', 'Porn pushers', etc.'
The article goes on to detail the fate of her friends who had been prosecuted for conspiracy to produce obscene articles and what a waste of police resources such action was. The irony here is that Mary Millington committed suicide in 1979, an act that has been partly blamed on continual police raids on her sex shops.
The distributor was Walton Press (Sales), 7 Grenville Rd, London N19.
|On this page