Wartime Newspapers
The Ministry of Information (MOI) was formed on 4th September 1939, the department was responsible for the publicity and propaganda used throughout the Second World War. The MOI was to supply the news from both home and overseas and to enforce the censorship that had been put in place. Propaganda Propaganda was a major force in both keeping moral high at home but publishing “good news” and triumphant posters but at the same time to attack the enemy showing them to be weak and a broken spent force to break its moral. Censorship A blanket censorship of the press was put in place within months of the outbreak of the First World War. Censorship during the First World War was designed to keep the full horrors of the trenches from the British public as it was feared if the full facts were freely available the public would demand the war be stopped immediately. Journalists based in the UK were given press releases issue by the Press Bureau these were heavily censored to exclude any bad news and would only have photographs taken by a few selected conscripted war photographers who had little training, so photographs would be out of focus, poorly shot and grainy. Whilst the war on the home front was more easily to record, it too was heavily censored so that reports of attacks would not be fed back to the enemy giving the both propaganda material and tactical information on how well a raid had been. However, sometimes articles would be published without going through the censor, one of these was a supplement by the Southend Standard detailing a Zeppelin raid including lists of those killed, roads bombed and uncensored photos showing bomb damage, a recall of the offending supplement was issued but by the time it was sent out the newspaper had been on sale and was selling fast, so the recall was cancelled. During the Second World War the restrictions were reduced, with a regulation of self-enforcement. Guidance was given on specific topics that were subject to censorship, the press were then invited to submit stories that could fall foul of what were known as ‘Defence Notices’. Any articles submitted would be checked over by the censor with any deductions and changes being highlighted before the article would be released for publication.

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Undated cutting from an unknown newspaper
Undated cutting from an unknown newspaper
Daily Mirror Tuesday 11th May 1915
Southend and Westcliff Graphic Tuesday 11th May 1915
Southend Standard Thursday 13th May 1915. This supplement was not given official clearance from the censor before it went on sale to the public. An urgent recall was ordered, however, by that time it was already in circulation, the recall was cancelled
Southend Standard Thursday 16th December 1915
Undated cutting from an unknown newspaper. The Tank Joy Rides were at the Kursaal, the tank pictured above is a British Mk4 "Female," it was bought by a syndicate of ex tank crew. A second tank this time a Mk 5 was also used but it was operated by a different group of investors, the Mk5's passenger deck was smaller, the tanks were used during the early 1920's. During the First World War the Kursaal remained open to the public a special attraction included a Trenches of the Somme replica
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