Home


 

 Meet Our Editor

-

40+ years, covering the local area

-

Ash Long, 59, is Editor of The Local Paper. He started his newspaper career in 1969, as a 12-year-old schoolboy. As a teenager in the mid-1970s, he was a community news 'stringer' for the Whittlesea Post and other Leader local newspapers, becoming an A-grade journalist. In 1978, he joined full-time employment with the Leader group, and quickly rose through executive ranks, specialising in marketing, sales and promotion. In the early 1980s, he became Manager of eight Leader newspapers at Whittlesea, Preston, Northcote, Brunswick, Coburg, Heidelberg, Doncaster-Templestowe and the Diamond Valley. He was a member of the National Promotions Committee of the Australian Suburban Newspapers' Association, and a representative on the Victorian Country Press Association.

-

In April 1984, Long purchased The Yea Chronicle business from Tom Dignam, who had started work at the newspaper as a 12-year-old 'printer's devil' in 1927. Tom Dignam, and his brother Eddie, purchased the newspaper business in 1936. Eddie died in 1968. Tom carried on the business until 1984.

-

-

Ash Long and Tom Dignam pictured in the 1980s at a Yea Football Club match.

-

-

 Innovation at Yea in newspaper publishing

-

Introduced Desktop Publishing to Australia

Ash Long converted Yea's newspaper to computer production in 1984, installing Itek typesetting and graphic camera on the premises. The four-page broadsheet newspaper became a tabloid production with more pages, up to 80 pages for the Centenary Issue in October 1985. Ash introduced extensive photographic coverage, then full-colour pictorial production in the early 1990s.

-

Ash Long's newspaper at Yea was the second in the world to use Apple computers and Pagemaker software in 1985-86. Pictured at the original 36 High St, Yea, premises.

-

 

 Active in the Yea-Kinglake communities

-

Decade of local service

Throughout his 10 years as Publisher-Editor at The Yea Chronicle from 1984-1993, Ash Long was vitally involved in all aspects of the community. The Long family lived at Murrindindi, Flowerdale and Yea. Fleur worked as a nurse at the Rosebank Extended Care Centre, alongside the Yea and District Community Hospital. She was a volunteer swimming coach with the Yea Tigers, and a leader with the Yea Brownies/Guides. Their children, Kristi and James, attended Yea Primary School, and were involved in sports including football, basketball and swimming.

-

From 1984 to 1993, Long expanded the company to start other weekly newspapers at Whittlesea, Kinglake, Nagambie, Seymour, Broadford and Kilmore. He sold The Yea Chronicle to Geoff Heyes and Jenny Smith of Alexandra Newspapers in May 1993. The Seymour-Nagambie interests were taken over by Keith Peplar who traded as The Advertiser for another 20 years,
-

-

-

Ash Long enjoyed weekend time as a follower of the Yea and Kinglake football clubs. He was a familiar figure on the boundary line, taking photographs of the match action for that week's issue. Above, Long is pictured with the late Larry Finch and the late Geoff Osborn at a KDFL match involving the Tigers.

-

 

 

 20 years on

-

TV, radio, internet and newspaper success

Following the sale of the Yea business in 1993, Ash Long took on six-month assignments as Editor of the Upper Yarra Mail at Yarra Junction-Warburton, and Publisher of the 112,000-circulation Canberra Weekly.  He started The Advertiser newspaper group in Melbourne, and became a TV producer, packaging the nightly Mansfield's Melbourne program on Optus and Channel 31. Similar programs were packaged each week for Sydney, Brisbane and Adelaide markets.
-

-

Ash Long with Ernie Sigley at 3AW in 2008.

-

The TV programs led to an involvement with radio station 3AW, with Ash appearing on the Nightline and Remember When programs hosted by Bruce Mansfield and Philip Brady. This led to broadcasts from the BBC in Gloucestershire in the United Kingdom. Ash was also a regular weekly guest on Bert Newton's Good Morning Australia, aired nationally on the Ten Network.

-

-

Ash Long pictured broadcasting from the BBC in Cheltenham, Gloucestershire

-

In 2002, Ash Long became Publisher of the Melbourne Observer newspaper, a statewide weekly publication on sale at hundreds of newsagents. Consistently more than 100 pages each week, the paper has produced sister publications: the Sydney News, Brisbane Sun, Travel Monthly and National Observer. For nearly 10 years, the Melbourne Observer was sponsor of Keith McGowan's Overnighters radio program on 3AW, leading to a close association with the broadcaster.

-

In 2016, Ash Long continues in his roles with the newspapers across Australia, but says he is particularly looking forward to his hands-on role as Editor of The Local Paper. He is looking forward to renewing old acquaintances and making new friends. He will personally be in Yea-Kinglake-Whittlesea weekly.

-

-

Published by Yea Newspapers, a division of Local Media Pty Ltd

ABN: 67 096 680 063

Head Office: 30 Glen Gully Road, Eltham, Vic 3095

Phone: (03) 5797 2656 or 1800 231 311. Fax: 1800 231 312.

International Phone: +61 3 5797 2656. Fax: +61 3 9431 6247

Web: www.LocalPaper.com.au  E-Mail: editor@LocalPaper.com.au 

Copyright 2016

Yea, Victoria, Australia.

 

 Enduring links with Yea

-

Yea Council coverage:
Best Local Reporting Award

-

Ash Long's reporting about the Yea Council won him the statewide Westpac Award for Best Local Reporting. announced by the Victorian Country Press Association in 1985-86. 
Pictured are Fleur and Ash Long, with James and Kristi Long.

-

 

 

 Community service in Yea

-

Involved in fund-raising

-

Ash Long was a Charter Member of the Rotary Club of Yea, which first met as a Provisional Club in 1985. The Charter Night was on May 1, 1986. He is a Past President and Past Secretary of the Club. He was vitally involved in the fund-raising for the new Accident and Emergency Department of the Yea and District Memorial Hospital, and lobbying for the Yea Helipad.  Dressed as Superman, he showed his trade-mark sense of humour, when hosting a fundraiser at the Yea Shire Hall. Ash Long was awarded as a Paul Harris Fellow of Rotary International.

-

-

Ash Long awarded as a Paul Harris Fellow by Rotary International District Governor Ron Pearce.

-

-
Australian advertising industry legend Lyle Dayman with Ash Long at a Rotary Club of Yea meeting to discuss the Yea and District Memorial Hospital fund-raising campaign.

-

-

 

 Bushfire recovery assistance

-

$1.3 million advertising donated

After the Black Saturday fires hit the region in February 2009, Ash Long published a special purpose newspaper - each week for 18 months - with the single aim of assisting local business people back on their feet after the disaster. 

-

-

The policy of the project over its 18 months was to provide everything without charge to locals - a free paper, with free ads and free promotion. More than $1.3 million of free advertising was gifted to local families and organisations during the rebuilding project. Circulation was widespread, taking in the municipalities of Hume, Mitchell, Murrindindi, Nillumbik, Strathbogie, Whittlesea and Yarra Ranges. Some issues execeeded 40 pages.  CLICK HERE to read the first issue.

-

 

 

 Philanthropic activities

-

Still active in charity work

-

-

Ash Long pictured with Neville Emerson at Ivanhoe Grammarians Lodge
-

Ash Long has been an active Freemason for the past 38 years. He is a member of the Ivanhoe Grammarians Lodge, and was a frequent visitor in the 1980s and 1990s to the Duke of Clarence Masonic Lodge in Yea.

-

Ash says he most enjoys the charity work of Freemasons. He has been active in the launch of the Rev. Peter Holloway Ivanhoe Grammar School Masonic Lodge Scholarship,. which is part-funding the secondary education of a Samoan teenage girl in what she describes as a "dream come true".
-
Ash Long says the Lodge recently donated 22 quality bikes to a pilot program for disdvantaged children in the northern suburbs. Dozens of projects are undertaken annually. He says he is particularly proud of Freemasons Victoria which donates more than $1 million annually to charitable projects.

-

In 2016, Ash Long is being conferred with the rank of Past Grand Tyler in recognition of his work.