Next Friday (January 19) is an important date in the history of The Romsey Advertiser as the paper switches from a broadsheet to a compact format.

However, this is not as a big a change as it may first appear and it certainly does not herald a change in values. We will still be committed to reporting your news and views just as we have done for the last 110 years.

The decision to change was only taken after an extensive survey of our readership which revealed that a large majority in favour of the compact format.

Everything you get with The Romsey Advertiser now, you will get in the compact version. The pages will be smaller but they'll be more of them - in fact you may not have realised quite how much you were getting for your 40p each week.

Sharp-eyed readers may notice that the masthead will have changed slightly. It was looking a bit tired so we've given it a facelift to make it sharper and cleaner whilst retaining the gothic-style typeface and Romsey's much-loved portcullis emblem.

The main typeface for editorial will also change from Times New Roman to Times Europa, which is actually slightly larger so there's no need to reach for the magnifying glass.

Your new-look Advertiser will also be in a single section with the 7 days supplement now forming an integral part of the paper. Within 7 days you will still find the latest arts, entertainment and leisure news plus reader offers, competitions and the crossword but Wheels (the motoring pages) will split away and move to its own position further back in the paper.

Family announcements will stay on page 2 and, of course, sport is at the back.

The Advertiser has been going since 1896 and has undergone many changes in that time - although a good deal fewer than many local papers. It began as a Romsey edition of the Andover Advertiser and for many years contained almost as much news from the north of the Test Valley as the Romsey area plus a great deal of national news.

Up until the 1930s it was common for comment pieces and sport to appear on the front page - if it hadn't all been sold for advertising. During World War Two and into the 1950s the paper was often only four pages. When we switch to compact the average pagination is likely to be around 72!

Photographs were a rarity until the 1960s and colour was not introduced until the early 1990s. Now the paper is packed with colour - benefiting both advertising and editorial - and with advent of the digital age many of the photographs which appear in the 21st century Advertiser are taken by and e-mailed in by you, the readers.