Murdoch sees the sun set on Fleet Street

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The Independent Online

"Let us now praise famous men and our fathers that begat us," Rupert Murdoch read to a congregation at the journalists' church, St Bride's in London. The irony was not lost on those present that it was Mr Murdoch - who began the slow demise of Fleet Street by moving his empire to Wapping in 1986 - who was sounding the death knell for the traditional home of British newspapers.

A gathering which included many current and former editors of newspapers that had once had their headquarters on Fleet Street gathered at St Bride's for a service to mark the departure of Reuters after 66 years to new offices at Canary Wharf, leaving behind a handful of magazine journalists and the staff of the French news agency, Agence France-Presse.

Canon David Meara, who led the service, said: "This has widely been reported as the last rites of Fleet Street. Fleet Street as a geographical home is now just a deserted village full of ghosts and memories, but it remains the generic name for the press everywhere and St Bride's remains the spiritual home for the industry."

Tom Glocer, the chief executive of Reuters, paid tribute to a street that had been home to "both the best and the worst of British journalism".

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