The fourth edition of a free Whanganui newspaper rolled off the press on Wednesday.

The Great War Times is an initiative of the late Wendy Pettigrew, the former chairwoman of the Whanganui Regional Heritage Trust. She wrote the first two issues and others have continued the effort.

It's an A4-sized newspaper with stories about region people during World War One. It also has information about WW1 commemorations, information for researchers, news about related publications elsewhere and about WW1 memorials in the wider Whanganui region.

It's modelled after papers published for the soldiers in the trenches of the Western Front during WW1. Often those papers were witty, to cheer the men up.


"The Great War Times does not necessarily emulate the trench newspapers in this respect, but will give readers a flavour of what was happening during and after the Great War," current co-ordinator Ann McNamara said.

She, Gillian Tasker, Libby Sharpe, Tricia Duncan and Jenny Shaw have put together issue four of the paper, with H&A Print publishing it.

It will be available in Whanganui libraries, at the Whanganui Returned and Services Association, the Whanganui information centre and museum.

There will also be copies in the Taihape, Bulls, Hunterville and Mangaweka museums and at the Marton Library and Marton Historic Village.

The Great War Times was funded by the Lotteries Board and Wanganui Powerco Trust. There will be 13 issues, Mrs McNamara said, with the next one due in December.

She would welcome WW1 stories from people in the region - either for the trust archive or for publication.