A brief timeline of UK newspaper publishing
  1702 First daily paper produced, the Daily Courant.
  1712 Stamp Act introduced; newspapers subjected to tax and price increased. The stamp tax was a tax on each newspaper and thus hit cheaper papers and popular readership harder than wealthy consumers (because it formed a higher proportion of the purchase price). It was increased in 1797, reduced in 1836 and was finally ended in 1855, thus allowing a cheap press.
  1785 The Times founded as the Daily Universal Register.
  1814 Steam presses used to print The Times allow much greater and faster production.
  1821 Manchester Guardian, later The Guardian, founded.
  1837 Invention of electric telegraph greatly facilitates collection of news. Subsequently growth of railways makes national distribution of newspapers much easier.
  1843 The News of the World founded as a Sunday newspaper.
  1870 Education Act gives boost to creation of mass reading public.
  1896 The advent of a new range of popular mass circulation newspapers. Daily Mail founded by Alfred Harmsworth, later Lord Northcliffe (1865-1922). This was the first mass circulation newspaper, priced ½d.
  1900 Daily Express started by Arthur Pearson (1866-1921).
  1903/1904 Daily Mirror refounded as ½d. An illustrated newspaper, it was the first to make regular use of halftone photographs.
  1914 Press censorship introduced during First World War under Defence of the Realm Act of August 1914, censorship was subsequently strengthened but then removed after the war.
  1932-33 Growth of sales of popular press. Major circulation war between main newspapers. Daily Herald and Daily Express achieve circulation of over two million copies each per day.
  1937 Total sale of all national dailies estimated at 10 million copies per day. Parallel to this growth was the decline of the provincial daily papers, which fell; from 41 in 1921 to 28 in 1937.
  1939 Restrictions upon the press re-introduced during the Second World War under Defence Regulations.
  1949 First Royal Commission on the Press recommends setting up of Press Council to oversee all aspects of the press and handle complaints from the public. The Press Council is actually set up in 1953; its role is subsequently modified.
  1950 Total sales of all national daily newspapers reaches all-time peak of 17 million copies per day.
  1982 Mail on Sunday becomes first photo-composed national newspaper.
  1986 News International titles (The Times, The Sunday Times, The Sun, The News of the World) move to Wapping from Fleet Street, followed in the next few years by The Daily Telegraph, The Sunday Telegraph, Observer, Evening Standard, Financial Times and Express Newspapers. This move is part of the process of transforming the production of newspapers using new technology.