About Letaba Herald
The newspaper industry in Tzaneen: The history of the newspaper industry in Tzaneen took as many interesting turns as the town and the region itself. Tzaneen has had its own newspaper since 15 January 1959. The Impala was started by Ronnie van der Berg in a time where Tzaneen was probably one of the smallest towns in the country to have its own newspaper. The Impala was sold to Theo Senekal in 1968 under whose leadership the newspaper grew from strength to strength until he decided to discontinue publishing the newspaper in 1974.In the same year, the Lowvelder group from Nelspruit, under the leadership of Jan Cilliers, decided to start a new newspaper in Tzaneen. During September of that year the first issue of the Letaba Lowvelder was published.The newspaper’s first editor was Eugene Kruger, who later became editor of several well-known specialty-magazines. He was succeeded by Tienie Fourie, who later became head-subeditor for Beeld. In 1974 the current manager for the Letaba Herald group, Lukas Groenewald, made his first appearance in Tzaneen after being promoted from sport editor for the Lowvelder in Nelspruit to news editor for the Letaba Lowvelder in Tzaneen. He took the reigns from Hennie Egen who joined the team at Pretoria News. During 1976 Senekal felt drawn back to the newspaper world, prompting him to take over the struggling Zeederberg and revive it. Tzaneen thus had two newspapers, albeit only for a short period. In September 1977 Senekal appointed Archie van Reenen as editor. Out of his pen flowed not only numerous articles and reports, but also a weekly commentary on local, national and international news. In June 1978 Senekal decided to sell the business and the Zeederberg was shut down. In July 1979 Piet Snyman approached the Lowvelder to buy the Letaba Lowvelder. His offer was accepted and Snyman decided to change the name to the Letaba Herald to reflect the paper’s newfound independence. In 1980 Snyman approached Groenewald, then still employed by the Lowvelder, and offered him the position of editor. He accepted and under Snyman’s leadership and Groenewald’s editorship the paper was named the best rural newspaper in South Africa in 1982. Two years later the paper came second and in 1992, after changing ownership twice, the same management team was once again named the best in the country. In 1983 Snyman decided to sell the newspaper back to the Lowvelder due to health reasons. Groenewald meanwhile joined the team at Beeld and Willem Gagiano was appointed editor of the newspaper. In 1985 Snyman made an offer to buy back the Letaba Herald once again, which the owners readily accepted. He immediately approached Groenewald to take over as editor.
Contact number: 015 307 5050 Fax: 015 307 5054 Email: [email protected]
Bertus de Bruyn
JOURNALIST AND NEWS EDITOR
JOURNALIST AND EDITOR
Magda de Jager
PRODUCTION AND GRAPHIC DESIGNER