Our ethos has never changed

The Evening Echo is 125 years old on June 14 and we are marking the anniversary all this week. Here is a message from Editor of the Evening Echo, Maurice Gubbins
Our ethos has never changed
The Buttevant rail disaster in 1980.

ON June 14, 1892, the first Evening Echo was sold on the streets of Cork.

From the start, this newspaper operated on a very straightforward principle: Local news for the people of Cork.

It is a formula which has earned loyalty from the people of the city and county.

We have presented that news during times of revolution, civil war, world war, recession, recovery, boom and bust.

The Evening Echo changed from an initial three evenings per week publication 125 years ago to six times weekly, from broadsheet format to compact tabloid, but the theme of the content is always the same — news and sport which is relevant to Cork people.

In our pages, the triumphs and tragedies, the debates and disputes, the nitty-gritty details of daily life in Cork have all been faithfully recorded.

President John F. Kennedy pictured at Collins Barracks, Cork with Lord Mayor Sean Casey and Frank Aiken during his Irish visit in 1963.
President John F. Kennedy pictured at Collins Barracks, Cork with Lord Mayor Sean Casey and Frank Aiken during his Irish visit in 1963.

Over the years, Evening Echo reporters and photographers have attended the events which have mattered to Cork people, from sporting victories at local, national and international level, to election campaigns; from terrible disasters like the Whiddy explosion and the Buttevant train crash, to wonderful occasions such as the visits of President John F Kennedy and Queen Elizabeth II; and recorded the incredible achievements of Cork people throughout the world in sport and other spheres.

Our news vendors put ‘the sheet on the street’ and delivered it to every corner, the cries of ‘Echo! Echo!’ becoming the song of the city.

Queen Elizabeth II meeting fishmonger Pat O'Connell at The English Market in Cork City on her State Visit to Ireland, 2011. Picture: Maxwells/PA Wire
Queen Elizabeth II meeting fishmonger Pat O'Connell at The English Market in Cork City on her State Visit to Ireland, 2011. Picture: Maxwells/PA Wire

The Evening Echo has always reported and analysed the business of the various local councils and has provided the most extensive coverage of the courts. We do this because we know they matter in the daily lives of our readers. We like to think our paper has contributed to the social sphere and community life of Cork.

In our reporting of news and sport, we stick closely to the facts. When comment is required, we are unflinching in our championing of Cork’s interests. When communities are facing trouble or have an issue they need sorted out, who do they call? People know that local authorities, government departments, big companies and organisations will all engage with problems highlighted by the Evening Echo. This is so because we have always spoken out for the people of Cork. Other media may feature them but we put journalistic resources into investigating and exposing the issues they need resolved.

Reliable news is not cheap and we have invested heavily in our professional news gathering network. Our reward has been the trust of the people of Cork.

From that first Echo of June 14, 1892, the amount of change has been incredible. More change has happened in the past 20 years than in the previous 100. Twenty years ago e-mail was a novelty and home broadband a dream. Now communication with downloads onto mobile phones and tablets brings news from all over the world as it happens.

What will the future bring?

The changing demands on how news is delivered will inevitably challenge the Evening Echo to keep abreast of new technology. We have already added the chime of the smartphone to the cry of the Echo Boy to bring the latest Cork news to you, the reader.

It has been my privilege to be editor of the Evening Echo for the past 15 years and my promise is this: Our ethic will remain the same — local news for the people of Cork.

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