Mr GRIMLEY (Western Victoria) (10:48): I rise to speak briefly about regional media. Local newspapers and regional radio are often at the heart of country towns. This is why it has been particularly sad to see the closure of so many rural and regional newspapers during the current COVID-19 pandemic. Despite a strong relationship, advertising value is often not enough to keep brands on board, and we are all the worse off for it. In many cases regional papers break a story well in advance of the likes of the Age or the Herald Sun, who then report on the story a day or two later. Despite the state of regional media, it was great to hear that Wimmera Mallee News, the publisher of the Warracknabeal Herald and the Dimboola Banner, has started a new weekly paper called the Horsham Times. The Horsham Times was the name of the original Horsham paper up until 1959. In that year the Horsham Times merged with the West Wimmera Mail to form the Wimmera Mail-Times, which has been printed until last month.
I would also like to place on record a special congratulations to David Ward, the owner and director of this venture. He has a special relationship with the paper, which his family used to own, and I wish him every success. The re-establishment of the Horsham Times paper will no doubt be welcomed by many locals. It is not only a great outcome for localised reporting; it is also a great outcome for local jobs. I look forward to getting down to Horsham during the winter recess and supporting the brilliant new newspaper.