UK
22/02/2016 11:34 GMT | Updated 22/02/2016 12:59 GMT

The New Day Newspaper Is Daily Mirror Publisher's Surprising Addition To The UK Media

The publisher of the Daily Mirror is launching Britain's first new standalone national newspaper for 30 years, which it claims will be politically neutral and treat readers "like grown ups".

The New Day, hitting news stands next Monday and priced at 50p, will stand apart from the left-leaning Daily Mirror and avoid "terrifying" readers with sensationalist news, according to its editor, Alison Phillips.

As well as an optimistic stance, its publisher Trinity Mirror also promises no political bias, and it will not have a traditional 'leader' column setting out the paper's views on the day's big topics.

Phillips, who will also continue in her current job overseeing the Sunday Mirror, said the public no longer want to be "told what to think" by editors from a "newspaper on high".

The cut-price new paper "most certainly isn't a red top", she told Radio 4's Today programme.

"Why should I, as the editor of a newspaper, enforce my opinion on my readers?" she asked, saying that easy access to opinions on social media means the public don't want to know what newspaper editors think.

Asked on Radio 4 whether the new offering was "Daily Mirror light", she replied: "Absolutely not".

"We are not having a political line of our own, we will just tell the story straight," she told host John Humphrys.

Seize The New Day

Seize The New Day. A brand new national paper launching Monday the 29th of Feb.

Posted by The New Day on Sunday, February 21, 2016

Phillips said she was targeting a "huge area in the middle" of readers of the Sun and readers of the Guardian, a group of people who didn't want to be "told what to think" any longer.

"I could be talking to the editor of the Independent 20 or 30 years ago," remarked Humphrys, suggesting that the New Day would be similar to the Independent which is set to close its print edition in March.

Phillips said the paper had spoken to thousands of people over the last year for research, and were targeting a group who were busy and had only 30 minutes to read a paper.

The New Day will run to 40 pages every day and be available free from more than 40,000 retailers on its first day, Monday 29 February. It will trial at 25p for two weeks, and sell for 50p after that.

But Phillips denied the paper would be similar in stance to the Independent and its sister title, the i. She said the New Day would differ by catering to the "mass" market and that Britain doesn't "at the moment [have] a paper that allows people to make up their own opinion".

The new paper, with a bright blue masthead, will operate without a website and aims to present positive news to make people "feel good", Phillips explained.

She said the paper would focus on in-depth articles and analysis as well as a "ruthless edit" summarising the news.

Phillips added that newspapers had "continued to put news out for the same way for 100 years" but hadn't adapted to the "bomb" of that the internet has represented for the UK media.

Aimed at people aged 35-55, the New Day will have a presence on social media on the Twitter handle @thenewdayuk and a Facebook account but will not have a standalone website.

The New Day's publisher said its launch had "nothing to do" with the imminent closure of the Independent as a print title.

The move comes despite a sharp decline in newspaper sales as readers switch to online websites. The Independent and the Independent on Sunday newspapers are to close next month and go digital-only.

Trinity Mirror chief executive Simon Fox said it was aimed at men and women but implied women were a more key market, saying it is "targeting a demographic of women and men, others might say men and women - there is a slight nuance".

"Over a million people have stopped buying a newspaper in the past two years but we believe a large number of them can be tempted back with the right product," he added.

The paper is thought to be run by a small team from Daily Mirror titles. Laurie Hannah, a former Daily Mirror journalist, tweeted that he had been named the News Editor.

The paper's choice of name may provide some difficulties online, as it's already a title used by a Christian youth festival and a set of WWE wrestlers.

The New Day name competition