THE publisher of a fortnightly free newspaper has gone into administration.

Seeker Photography, which traded as Seeker News, ceased trading with debts estimated at £40,000.

The paper employed four people including proprietor and editor Steve Cook and his wife Dawn. The rest of its contributors were self-employed.

A statement from proprietor Steve Cook said: “It is with regret that we've taken the decision to end publication of Seeker News with immediate effect. The support we've received from readers and advertisers has been wonderful and is greatly appreciated.

“Unfortunately the industry-wide decline in revenues from advertising within print media meant that although the content and design of the paper delivered everything we set out to achieve, the commercial side of the operation struggled to keep pace with the growth of the publication.

“We have exciting plans for the future which I hope to confirm shortly. Thank you for all your support.”

Public relations and photography company Seeker Photography published the title first as a monthly magazine, then re-launched it as a fortnightly newspaper last year. It had an initial print run of 10,000.

The title was distributed mainly through supermarkets, leisure centres, hotels, cafes and hospitals in Bournemouth and Poole.

Mark Liddle, of insolvency specialist Mark Liddle Partnership Ltd, confirmed he was dealing with the administration process.He said the company would be liquidated in the first week of November, when there would be a creditors' meeting.

He said Mr Cook was setting up Cook Publishing to start up a new venture.