Sports weekly goes online to raise £50,000

Crowdfunding, or begging bowl? The online innovation for fund-raising has proved useful for charities and good causes, and now a Scottish publisher is using it to launch a weekly sports title, reports ANTON RIPPON

Pat Nevin, the former Chelsea, Everton and Scotland footballer, and tennis coach Judy Murray will be columnists on a standalone weekly sports-only newspaper in Scotland – should a crowdfunding effort aimed at raising enough cash to launch a 40-page pilot edition succeed.

Judy Murray: set to write for new Scottish sports weekly
Judy Murray: set to write for new Scottish sports weekly

The website is heavily involved in the project – including establishing links with journalists, photographers and “new talent” – which would see the newspaper avoid publishing football match reports but instead urge journalists to find the “compelling stories behind the weekend’s sporting calendar”.

A £50,000 target needs to be reached within a month for the pilot to become reality. Benefactors are invited to make donations of either £5, £10 or £100.

Those who pledge £5 would receive a copy of the paper, delivered to their door. The £10 pledge involves receiving a copy of the pilot issue, plus being named as a “supporter” within its pages.

Those pledging £100 would receive the pilot, and be named as a “founding patron” within its pages.

And should the project continue, then they will be named as a “founding patron” in issues 2-52 and then at least once a year for however long the paper lasts.

The money will be taken from donors only if the target is reached, in which case it is hoped that the pilot issue will be published in late April or early May. If that succeeds, the next target would be enough subscribers to sustain weekly publication.

Mike Wilson, the managing director of, said: “We are a website that continues to believe in print, at least for certain types of editorial. Should the target be reached, the paper will be all about upcoming events. In other words, no match reports; not even news, per se.

“It will showcase all sport, at all levels, and involve some of the country’s best-known writers plus several new ones that we will be seeking to nurture.

“Writers will be challenged to find the compelling stories behind the weekend’s sports calendar, in all sports at all levels. We will be different, we have to be different. Our editorial agenda will be driven by the strength of the story, not any perceived hierarchy that has some sports and clubs featured much more heavily than others.”

The crowdfunding details can be found here.