Span 1954 – 1976 (266 issues plus 14 extras)
First issue September 1954, last issue October 1976.
In view of the breathtaking speed in which Spick gained its immense popularity, editor R.T. Staples was quick to comply with reader demands for fortnightly instead of monthly publication. But he did so in a much more innovative and far-sighted way. He created a new title that would appear on the streets between editions of Spick and called it, predictably and inevitably, Span. A very clever move. It is, you will surely agree, much more impressive to be able to boast of two titles with 100 editions than one with 200. It offers the opportunity for different styles, different content and – most importantly – greater profits. It was an opportunist gimmick to exploit the collector’s weakness of owning a complete set of everything ToCo produced.
The first edition of the second title in the ToCo stable was launched on 6 September 1954, with Joya Radcliffe on the cover.
From the start, the format was similar to Spick, and the two magazines were to complement each other throughout their lifetimes. The rapidly growing rate of inflation is evident from the cover prices, which began at one shilling (five pence) in the ‘50s and ended at three shillings (thirty pence) in the ‘70s – a 300% increase in 20 years.
They were published on the 6th of the current month and dated for that month, with the 14 quarterly Extras appearing on the 30 March, June, September and December from 1958 to 1960.