Luton News on the move since paper first published nearly 125 years ago

Luton News offices and printworks in Alma Street.
Luton News offices and printworks in Alma Street.

Next year the Luton News reaches an important milestone. The paper celebrates its 125th birthday and many older readers will have fond memories of its various offices and printworks.

They include the grand building, later replaced by a modern office block used by health services, on the corner of Manchester Street and Alma Street.

Luton News offices and printworks in Castle Street.

Luton News offices and printworks in Castle Street.

The Luton News clock on the side of this impressive construction became a popular landmark, with courting couples often arranging to meet beneath it.

And do you remember the display windows containing photos – only black and white in those days, of course – that customers could buy?

But due to the success of the Luton News, which sold up to 50,000 copies a week, and its sister titles the Saturday Telegraph, Tuesday Pictorial and sports paper the Green Un, it outgrew the building.

So the move was eventually made to brand new headquarters in Castle Street for parent company Home Counties Newspapers in the mid 1960s.

HCN owned local newspapers throughout Beds, Bucks and Herts and in parts of London and most were printed here. On Wednesday night (the Luton News published on Thursday in those days) people would stop and stare at the glass-sided building as the papers rolled off the giant printing press.

Following several changes of offices in the 1980s, including Grosvenor House in Alma Street and Crystal House in New Bedford Road, HCN was sold to Johnston Press, owners of the Herald & Post.

Journalists and advertising staff of both papers were based in Church Street before they moved to Media House in Upper George Street 15 years ago.