It was established in 1857 as The Bridgwater Mercury, and Western Counties’ Herald. Two years later it rearranged the elements of the title to put the Western Counties Herald first, but then in 1864 it became simply The Bridgwater Mercury.
In 1986 it merged with the Burnham & Highbridge Gazette, whose origins lay in the 1895 foundation The Burnham Gazette and Visitors’ List, and Highbridge Advertiser. It became the Burnham-on-Sea Gazette, Residents’ and Visitors’ List in 1917, and then the Burnham & Highbridge Gazette in 1947 when it merged with The Highbridge Express (founded 1920).
However, the merger of the Mercury and Gazette – as the Bridgwater Mercury, Burnham & Highbridge Gazette – only lasted barely over six months before the two titles resumed their separate existence.
It’s published by Newsquest (South West) from editorial offices in Bridgwater.
There’s a local sub-edition for Burnham-on-Sea and Highbridge: the Burnham & Highbridge Weekly News (which effectively supplanted the Gazette in 1989). A companion freesheet, the Bridgwater Star, closed in December 2008.
It comes out on Wednesdays.