The Bucks Free Press is celebrating its 165th anniversary this month. 

The newspaper was set up by chemist, bookseller, stationer, and publisher William Butler. Our first edition was published on December 19, 1856.

Based in Church Street, High Wycombe, it was known as The South Bucks Free Press.

The newspaper has seen changes in technology since papers were fed into the printing presses by hand and deliveries were made by horse and cart.

The Free Press has inhabited just four locations during its history, moving to our current location in Station Road, Loudwater, in May 2005.

Bucks Free Press:

Bucks Free Press:

There were no typewriters when the paper first launched so the stories were all hand-written and then the type was handset, letter by letter, ready for the printer. Single sheets of paper had to be hand-fed into a massive machine to produce the paper at the Little Market House in High Street, High Wycombe.

In 1924, a rotary printing press was installed, which speeded up the process considerably but it was in 1938 that the paper enjoyed a boom year with the installation of a much larger and faster printer which allowed 32-page issues to be produced.

There was a big increase in staff in 1939 but then war broke out, leading to paper rationing and a loss of employees as young men were called up to fight.

Bucks Free Press:

Bucks Free Press:

In 1956 the BFP moved out of the town to its warehouse in Gomm Road (opposite B&Q). The paper was printed here in hot metal fashion until the early 1970s.

The changes in production methods since then have changed the paper's workforce and in 1990 the press was decommissioned and the printing was contracted out.

When the Bucks Free Press celebrated its 150th anniversary in 2006, readers and old employees got in touch to share their memories. 

Many recalled our report of when Wycombe Wanderers beat Hayes FC to win the Amateur Cup Final in 1931. A crowd of more than 32,000 paid £2,222 to watch the game in north London.

We heard from long-serving employee Jack Blake, who worked in our printing works from 1934 until 1985, a total of 51 years. Speaking in 2006, he remembered many characters of the past including chief reporter "Puppy" Owens who wore a bowler hat and knew nearly everyone in town.

Others shared stories about ex-printers who lived nearby in the paper's younger years and would stop by the works to get enough money for a bed in the workhouse in Amersham or Saunderton.