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After less than a year, a survey by Leichhardt Council shows the Inner West Independent has already made a significant impression on local residents.

The survey, within the Local Government Area, showed one in five of respondents were aware of the Independent after just eight issues.

Balmain state MP Verity Firth wrote to express her support for the publication. “The Inner West Independent has proven to be an important voice on issues affecting residents and businesses in our local area,” she said. “I have been impressed by the integrity and ingenuity of the Inner West Independent’s news and community coverage and I believe that our community would be poorer without it.”

Deputy Mayor, Greens councillor Michele McKenzie, described it as a “fantastic addition” to the community. “At this time, how many areas can say they have a new community newspaper?” she said. “The recognition – one in five people – is very high for a newspaper that’s only been going for a year, and we should be encouraging it. People like having a truly independent paper.”

“I’ve been impressed with the quality of the Independent in the short time it’s been publishing,” said Liberal councillor Gordon Weiss. “The area is blessed with a number of very good community newspapers – I think the community should support them and Council has a role to play in that.”