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Utilize over four decades of content from Britain's biggest-selling Sunday newspaper to expand your understanding of conservative middle-class life and culture
Established in 1982 under the same ownership as, but editorially separate from, the Daily Mail, the Mail on Sunday has been one of the top UK Sunday newspapers for four decades. Generally conservative in its stance, journalists have included Piers Morgan, Peter Hitchens and conservative politician Norman Tebbit. It has covered British politics on the domestic and international stage through sometimes contentious or sensationalist tabloid journalism, from its launch during the Falklands War and the sweeping economic reforms of the Thatcher years to the controversial conflicts in the Middle East under the Blair premiership and the News International phone hacking scandal and subsequent Leveson inquiry in the 2000s.
With complete issues now made available digitally through The Mail on Sunday Historical Archive, researchers can follow prominent news stories and perspectives on the social trends and debates of the era.
Brief History of Launch
The Mail on Sunday was created in 1982 by Lord Rothermere as Chairman of Associated Newspapers, making it the first national Sunday title published by Associated Newspapers since 1961. After its launch, Sir David English, already editor at the Daily Mail, briefly became an editor for the Mail on Sunday, followed by Stewart Steven, who served as the newspaper’s editor from 1982 to 1992.
- “Popular” and International Politics: Established during the premiership of Margaret Thatcher, and conservative in its stance, the Mail on Sunday has commented on the issues central to the Conservative Party in Britain. The newspaper has reported on key political concerns, both national and international, including the Miners’ Strike in the 1980s, IRA bombings, and the war on terror.
- Protest Movements: Events such as the 2003 “Stop the War” march against the war in Iraq and campaigns against the development of nuclear weapons are some of the protests covered by the Mail on Sunday, highlighting some of the key political and social attitudes in Britain since the 1980s.
- Entertainment and Culture: The Mail on Sunday has included dedicated pages to book and film reviews, as well as highlights from the latest television and radio programs, articles on celebrities and public figures, and commentaries on the royal family.
- Sports Coverage: From racing to rugby, the Mail on Sunday has provided readers with the latest tournament results and commentaries on the most current issues in sports around the world.
- Business and Finance: The Mail on Sunday has offered articles covering the major financial and business developments since the 1980s, including the 2007–2008 financial crisis and its impact on everyday life.
Piers Morgan is a widely known English journalist, broadcaster, and television personality, who has contributed to the Mail on Sunday since 2008. Most recently, Morgan has reported on the political and celebrity affairs of the current day as a regular Events columnist. Morgan is also the United States Editor for DailyMail.Com, as well as being an author of numerous books, and has his own talk show Piers Morgan Uncensored.
British politician Norman Tebbit was a member of the Conservative Party, serving as an MP for Epping (1970–1974) and Chingford (1974–1992), as well as a Cabinet member from 1981 to 1987, during Margaret Thatcher’s premiership. After leaving the Cabinet in 1987, Tebbit sat in the House of Lords from 1992 until early 2022. Tebbit was a columnist for the Mail on Sunday between 1997 and 2001, while authoring multiple books.
Peter Hitchens is a journalist and author, and former foreign correspondent in Moscow and Washington, who has been contributing to the Mail on Sunday since 2000. Notably, Hitchens won the Orwell Prize for political journalism in 2010. Hitchens has a weekly column and his own blog with the Mail Online, where his articles continue to cover a range of current affairs, including the Covid-19 pandemic and the ongoing war in Ukraine.
Scottish journalist John Junor wrote for the Mail on Sunday from 1990 until his death in 1997, after leaving his position as editor-in-chief at the Sunday Express. Contributing as a columnist, Junor shared his time at the Mail on Sunday with other notable contributors such as Julie Burchill. In his earlier life, Junor stood for Parliament in Scotland for the Liberal Party.
Julie Burchill started her journalism career at the age of 17, writing for multiple newspapers before becoming a columnist for the Mail on Sunday until 1998. Though having previously taken a favorable approach to Margaret Thatcher, Burchill used her column in the Mail on Sunday to encourage readers to vote for Labour in 1987. Since beginning her journalism career, Burchill has also gone on to write multiple novels.
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