The Wellington Times

On the 1st October 1890, the first issue of The Wellington Times went on sale, and the small but economically developing town of Burnie had its first newspaper.  This was an important development for Burnie, as the local newspaper was the only means of mass communication until radio stations came on the air in the 1920s.  The Wellington Times began modestly as a four page publication issued twice a week.  In 1918, the name was changed to The Advocate, and by the 1920s it had extended its range to cover the entire North West and West Coast of Tasmania.  The Advocate is still the North West and West Coast’s daily newspaper and now has a circulation of about

25 000.


Against the wall of the printery in the streetscape display are two wooden trays or cases for holding hand-set type.  The lower case is for ordinary type and the upper case is for capitals.  The terms ‘upper and lower case’ are still applied in the printing industry although the hand-setting of type has long been obsolete.


By 1900, because of the speed required in newspaper production, composing machines, like the linotype machine in the printery, were in general use.  These machines produced ‘slugs’ (each slug being a complete line of type cast in one piece).  This machine was in use at The Advocate until 1976, when off-set printing was introduced.