1 PRINT IN THANET - COVER & BACK COVER & TEXT - FLIPBOOK v26 ZZZ - FAW - Flipbook - Page 53
Magic Ink and print from
two other Thanet printers
Magic Ink identity [MI]
PRINT can be used in many different ways to serve different markets and
interests. Businesses too can be set up for many different reasons. This
story tells of alternative personal, political and lifestyle choices. Perhaps
some of these choices would not have been shared by the people that
bought diaries from Martell Press or played Monopoly by the rule book
printed at The Thanet Press. However aspects of this print and these
choices have become more mainstream over time and influenced people well
beyond the borders of Thanet.
Working in London for BIT, an information service run by legendary
underground newspaper International Times, Ian King was injured in a
motorbike accident. He spent his compensation on a house in Margate,
where his family ran businesses including a seaside rock shop and an
independent school, and purchased a small printing press. The house
became a home to hippies travelling via Margate, who would often turn up
with just a sleeping bag. The printing press became Magic Ink, and its first
publication was a guide to setting up a co-operative smallholding.
King took over editing and printing BIT’s travel guides for hippies
visiting India, Australia and other exotic places, printing them under the
Magic Ink Travel Guides imprint. These publications inspired the Lonely
Planet guides, early editions of which were written by Magic Ink’s chief
writer Geoff Crowther.
King also printed anarchist newsletter Freedom from 1976-1981. When
Freedom Press decided to move into printing themselves, setting up
London co-op Aldgate Press, King helped them find their first machine.
King also founded Disabilities Unlimited, a co-operative print shop on