In spite of considerable marketing efforts by new owner Richard Desmond, readership of the Daily Express dropped 10% to below two million in the six months to September 2001, according to new figures from the National Readership Survey.

To compound the Express’s woe, chief rival the Daily Mail registered a 2% rise. However, Desmond can take some comfort from a 136,000 (9%) increase at another member of his newspaper stable, The Star.

Also faring badly in the survey was London’s Evening Standard, which saw its readership fall 13% (137,000) to below one million.

However, the broadsheets did rather better, with a rise in readership in the wake of September 11, backing-up results from the Audit Bureau of Circulations [WAMN: 17-Oct-01]. Most successful was The Guardian, up 12% to 1.2m, with increases also recorded for the Financial Times and The Independent.

News source: Media Week (UK) [07-Nov-01]