Jackie’s News originally started life in the late 1980s as a newsagent and sweet shop called Page’s in Tenterden. It became Jackie’s in the 1990s when Jackie Parsons bought the shop from her employers (her sister and brother in law, Linda and Fred Page). Then in 2001 Jackie relinquished the shop premises to concentrate solely on Home News Delivery. From 2001 Jackie and her husband John successfully operated and grew the business to serve not just Tenterden but subsequently acquired rounds in High Halden, Rolvenden and Wittersham. We purchased the business from Jackie and John in March 2007. We kept the name because they had a great reputation and brand in the community that we hoped to emulate.
From March 2007 we began to serve a customer base of around 1200 homes and businesses in Tenterden, St Michaels, High Halden, Rolvenden, Rolvenden Layne, Wittersham, Stone-in-Oxney, Ebony and, later that year, Peasmarsh.
A year on in 2008 we expanded our business by taking on the CTN kiosk to serve hot drinks and newspapers to the commuters at Headcorn station.
From our initial purchase of Jackie’s until the summer of 2009 the delivery of newspapers was mixed between local teenagers in built up areas and adult car driving deliverers on the rural side. Whilst this provided work possibilities for young people this restricted the amount of newspapers each deliverer could cope with (weight of papers plus Government children at work regulations) and our overall control of the delivery process. As a consequence we rerouted the rounds to serve a higher number of customers per deliverer and changed to employing drivers only as deliverers.
In June 2010 we purchased some 400 customers from the newsagents in Northiam which subsequently closed down. This meant we could serve a new group of readers living in the communities at Northiam, Newenden and Beckley – some of which are far from any shops.
Six months after this we agreed with South Eastern Railway’s management team to recreate the Headcorn CTN kiosk at Staplehurst Station – so by the start of 2011 there were now 2 stations with Jackie’s News kiosks in them.
In May 2011 Smarden Post Office approached us with a view to purchasing 200 home news delivery customers which they were serving. This increased our customer base from 1600 to 1800 and meant we were now delivering newspapers and magazines to Smarden and outlying areas.
Just over a year after that Jackie’s News turned a historical circle when we entered discussion with Page’s (Linda and Fred) Newsagents in Cranbrook to take over the delivery to 725 of their existing customer base. By September 2012 this was completed and brought our total customer number up to over 2,525 and saw us serving new areas of Sandhurst, Hawkhurst, Frittenden, Benenden, Iden Green, Sissinghurst, rural Cranbrook and south Staplehurst. In addition to the domestic supply we now also began sub supply to two garages, a park home shop, a village shop and a hospital shop.
In February 2013 Jackie’s News purchased 112 customers in Pluckley and Egerton and a bit later on in November we purchased another 98 customers in Great Chart, Charing and Ashford, both of these purchases were from fellow HND specialist Delivered News of Aylesford, further adding to our customer base in those areas.
During November and December 2013 we undertook an extensive marketing campaign during which we signed up some 170 new customers (net) in both new and old coverage areas.
On December 9th 2013 Jackie’s News stopped trading and Jackie’s News Limited started trading.
2014 was upon us, and again in February another purchase in Rural Woodchurch added 112 customers and then a bit later in the year we added another 130 customers in Woodchurch itself. On the 5th October 2014 we restarted deliveries of newspapers to Littlestone & New Romney after The Paper Shop of Littlestone had stopped delivering the previous Sunday.
After a quiet start to 2015, August was extremely busy with takeovers including Greatstone (72), St Michaels (125), Appledore (61) and Maidstone (192).
In 2016 Jackie’s News expanded into Ewhurst Green, Staplecross, Cripps Corner, Broad Oak, Brede, Udimore (116), Camber (15), Lydd (105) and Kennington (77) meaning that we now deliver to 4,000
HND customers. We now employ 39 workers and sell approximately 1.4 million newspapers every year.