[Tex/LaTex] What has changed in LaTeX that means the RSC template no longer works


I've been having an issue with the RSC Article template that causes the first page to render fine, but every subsequent page to render incorrectly, with a large blank area at the top, and the rest of the page shifted down so the bottom runs off the page.

I spent a bunch of time comparing my files to the template, before finally trying to compile the template example, and finding it had the same problem. I thought that was very strange, and opened a file I wrote several years ago that compiled just fine at the time, and recompiled that. It also compiled incorrectly. Therefore, I'm guessing something has changed in TeXLive 2019 that is causing this error.

What happens when I compile this document now
What used to happen

I'm not sure how to make a MWE of this bug: I could delete things until it goes away, but that might just be hiding the problem. For example, switching from \usepackage{newtxtext,newtxmath} to \usepackage{times,mathptmx} seemed to fix the problem, until I wrote more and the problem returned (I assume there was some change in how the figures are laid out that gave rise to this.

I have made an example that shows this rather plainly: however you will need to download the template from the RSC so that the figures are there, or it doesn't show the error.

Therefore MNWE 1: Download the RSC Article template and run pdflatex on that with fully updated TeXLive2019

MNEW 2: This is simply the RSC template with a few pages of public domain text pasted into it: It occurs without the text (just with the template example on fully updated TeXLive2019), but this is more obvious as you can see the text running off the page.

%This is the LaTeX ARTICLE template for RSC journals
%Copyright The Royal Society of Chemistry 2016
\usepackage[left=1.5cm, right=1.5cm, top=1.785cm, bottom=2.0cm]{geometry}
  \renewcommand{\refname}{Notes and references}
%%%Please don't disable any packages in the preamble, as this may cause the template to display incorrectly.%%%

\usepackage{epstopdf}%This line makes .eps figures into .pdf - please comment out if not required.





%%%PAGE SETUP - Please do not change any commands within this section%%%

\color{cream}\hrule width 3.5in height 0.4pt \color{black}\vspace*{5pt}} 

\setstretch{1.125} %In particular, please do not alter this line.

\fancyfoot[RO]{\footnotesize{\sffamily{1--\pageref{LastPage} ~\textbar  \hspace{2pt}\thepage}}}
\fancyfoot[LE]{\footnotesize{\sffamily{\thepage~\textbar\hspace{3.45cm} 1--\pageref{LastPage}}}}

%%%FIGURE SETUP - please do not change any commands within this section%%%

\noindent{\color{cream}\rule[-\figrulesep]{\columnwidth}{1.5pt}} }

\noindent{\color{cream}\rule[\figrulesep]{\columnwidth}{1.5pt}} }

\noindent{\color{cream}\rule[-\figrulesep]{\textwidth}{1.5pt}} }


\begin{tabular}{m{4.5cm} p{13.5cm} }

\includegraphics{head_foot/DOI} & \noindent\LARGE{\textbf{This is the title$^\dag$}} \\%Article title goes here instead of the text "This is the title"
\vspace{0.3cm} & \vspace{0.3cm} \\

 & \noindent\large{Full Name,$^{\ast}$\textit{$^{a}$} Full Name,\textit{$^{b\ddag}$} and Full Name\textit{$^{a}$}} \\%Author names go here instead of "Full name", etc.

\includegraphics{head_foot/dates} & \noindent\normalsize{The abstract should be a single paragraph which summarises the content of the article. Any references in the abstract should be written out in full \textit{e.g.}\ [Surname \textit{et al., Journal Title}, 2000, \textbf{35}, 3523].} \\%The abstrast goes here instead of the text "The abstract should be..."


 \end{@twocolumnfalse} \vspace{0.6cm}


%%%FONT SETUP - please do not change any commands within this section


\footnotetext{\textit{$^{a}$~Address, Address, Town, Country. Fax: XX XXXX XXXX; Tel: XX XXXX XXXX; E-mail: xxxx@aaa.bbb.ccc}}
\footnotetext{\textit{$^{b}$~Address, Address, Town, Country. }}

%Please use \dag to cite the ESI in the main text of the article.
%If you article does not have ESI please remove the the \dag symbol from the title and the footnotetext below.
\footnotetext{\dag~Electronic Supplementary Information (ESI) available: [details of any supplementary information available should be included here]. See DOI: 00.0000/00000000.}
%additional addresses can be cited as above using the lower-case letters, c, d, e... If all authors are from the same address, no letter is required

\footnotetext{\ddag~Additional footnotes to the title and authors can be included \textit{e.g.}\ `Present address:' or `These authors contributed equally to this work' as above using the symbols: \ddag, \textsection, and \P. Please place the appropriate symbol next to the author's name and include a \texttt{\textbackslash footnotetext} entry in the the correct place in the list.}


%%%MAIN TEXT%%%%
The main text of the article\cite{Mena2000} should appear here.

\subsection{This is the subsection heading style}
Section headings can be typeset with and without numbers.\cite{Abernethy2003}

\subsubsection{This is the subsubsection style.~~} These headings should end in a full point.  

\paragraph{This is the next level heading.~~} For this level please use \texttt{\textbackslash paragraph}. These headings should also end in a full point.

\section{Graphics and tables}
Graphics should be inserted on the page where they are first mentioned (unless they are equations, which appear in the flow of the text).\cite{Cotton1999}

  \caption{An example figure caption.}

 \caption{A two-column figure.}

Tables typeset in RSC house style do not include vertical lines. Table footnote symbols are lower-case italic letters and are typeset at the bottom of the table. Table captions do not end in a full point.\cite{Arduengo1992,Eisenstein2005}

  \caption{\ An example of a caption to accompany a table}
    Header one (units) & Header two & Header three \\
    1 & 2 & 3 \\
    4 & 5 & 6 \\
    7 & 8 & 9 \\
    10 & 11 & 12 \\

Adding notes to tables can be complicated.  Perhaps the easiest method is to generate these manually.\footnote[4]{Footnotes should appear here. These might include comments relevant to but not central to the matter under discussion, limited experimental and spectral data, and crystallographic data.}

  \caption{\ An example of a caption to accompany a table \textendash\ table captions do not end in a full point}
    Header one & Header two & Header three & Header four & Header five & Header six  & Header seven\\
    1 & 2 & 3 & 4 & 5 & 6  & 7\\
    8 & 9 & 10 & 11 & 12 & 13 & 14 \\
    15 & 16 & 17 & 18 & 19 & 20 & 21\\


Equations can be typeset inline \textit{e.g.}\ $ y = mx + c$ or displayed with and without numbers:

 \[ A = \pi r^2 \]

  \frac{\gamma}{\epsilon x} r^2 = 2r

You can also put lists into the text. You can have bulleted or numbered lists of almost any kind. 
The \texttt{mhchem} package can also be used so that formulae are easy to input: \texttt{\textbackslash ce\{H2SO4\}} gives \ce{H2SO4}. 

For footnotes in the main text of the article please number the footnotes to avoid duplicate symbols. \textit{e.g.}\ \texttt{\textbackslash footnote[num]\{your text\}}. The corresponding author $\ast$ counts as footnote 1, ESI as footnote 2, \textit{e.g.}\ if there is no ESI, please start at [num]=[2], if ESI is cited in the title please start at [num]=[3] \textit{etc.} Please also cite the ESI within the main body of the text using \dag.

The conclusions section should come in this section at the end of the article, before the Conflicts of interest statement.

\section*{Conflicts of interest}
In accordance with our policy on \href{http://www.rsc.org/journals-books-databases/journal-authors-reviewers/author-responsibilities/#code-of-conduct}{Conflicts of interest} please ensure that a conflicts of interest statement is included in your manuscript here.  Please note that this statement is required for all submitted manuscripts.  If no conflicts exist, please state that ``There are no conflicts to declare''.

The Acknowledgements come at the end of an article after Conflicts of interest and before the Notes and references.



%The \balance command can be used to balance the columns on the final page if desired. It should be placed anywhere within the first column of the last page.


%If notes are included in your references you can change the title from 'References' to 'Notes and references' using the following command:
%\renewcommand\refname{Notes and references}

\bibliography{rsc} %You need to replace "rsc" on this line with the name of your .bib file
\bibliographystyle{rsc} %the RSC's .bst file


Edit: I was asked to provide the versions of packages when it did compile correctly. I exclude .log files from my source control, but I did manage to find one that is from the right era:

Package: extsizes 1996/10/08 v1.0 Non Standard LaTeX Package
Package: natbib 2010/09/13 8.31b (PWD, AO)
Package: mhchem 2016/08/07 v4.05 for typesetting chemical formulae
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Package: l3flag 2016/11/21 v6760 L3 Experimental flags
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Package: amsbsy 1999/11/29 v1.2d Bold Symbols
Package: amsopn 2016/03/08 v2.02 operator names
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Package: ifpdf 2016/05/14 v3.1 Provides the ifpdf switch
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Package: widetext 
Package: flushend 2016/06/21 v3.2 Balancing columns in twocolumn mode
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Package: cuted 2012/10/04 v1.5 Mixing onecolumn and twocolumn modes
Package: sectsty 2002/02/25 v2.0.2 Commands to change all sectional heading sty
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Package: caption3 2016/05/22 v1.7-166 caption3 kernel (AR)
Package: float 2001/11/08 v1.3d Float enhancements (AL)
**Package: fancyhdr 2016/09/06 3.8 Extensive control of page headers and footers**
Package: fnpos 1999/07/14 v1.0 
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File: pgfcorepoints.code.tex 2013/10/07  (rcs-revision 1.27)
File: pgfcorepathconstruct.code.tex 2013/10/07  (rcs-revision 1.29)
File: pgfcorepathusage.code.tex 2014/11/02  (rcs-revision 1.24)
File: pgfcorescopes.code.tex 2015/05/08  (rcs-revision 1.46)
File: pgfcoregraphicstate.code.tex 2014/11/02  (rcs-revision 1.12)
File: pgfcoretransformations.code.tex 2015/08/07  (rcs-revision 1.20)
File: pgfcorequick.code.tex 2008/10/09  (rcs-revision 1.3)
File: pgfcoreobjects.code.tex 2006/10/11  (rcs-revision 1.2)
File: pgfcorepathprocessing.code.tex 2013/09/09  (rcs-revision 1.9)
File: pgfcorearrows.code.tex 2015/05/14  (rcs-revision 1.43)
File: pgfcoreshade.code.tex 2013/07/15  (rcs-revision 1.15)
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File: pgfcoreexternal.code.tex 2014/07/09  (rcs-revision 1.21)
File: pgfcorelayers.code.tex 2013/07/18  (rcs-revision 1.7)
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File: lmsntxsy.fd 2016/07/02 Fontinst v1.933 font definitions for LMS/ntxsy.
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File: ot1ntxtlf.fd 2015/01/17 v1.0 font definition file for OT1/ntx/tlf
File: untxmia.fd 2016/01/31 Fontinst v1.933 font definitions for U/ntxmia.
File: untxsym.fd 2015/03/20 Fontinst v1.933 font definitions for U/ntxsym.
File: untxsyc.fd 2012/04/12 Fontinst v1.933 font definitions for U/ntxsyc.
File: t1qhv.fd 2009/09/25 v1.2 font definition file for T1/qhv
File: t1ntxtt.fd 2012/04/20 v3.1
File: head_foot/DOI.pdf Graphic file (type pdf)
File: head_foot/dates.pdf Graphic file (type pdf)
File: t1bch.fd 2004/10/18 font definitions for T1/bch.
File: mt-bch.cfg 2007/03/03 v1.5 microtype config. file: Bitstream Charter (RS)
File: ts1bch.fd 2004/10/18 font definitions for TS1/bch.
File: head_foot/journal_name.pdf Graphic file (type pdf)
File: head_foot/header_bar.pdf Graphic file (type pdf)
File: head_foot/RSC_LOGO_CMYK.pdf Graphic file (type pdf)
File: head_foot/LF.pdf Graphic file (type pdf)
File: head_foot/RF.pdf Graphic file (type pdf)
File: ts1qhv.fd 2009/09/25 v1.2 font definition file for TS1/qhv

Edit3: I found another computer where I haven't updated LaTeX in a while, and it still compiles properly there: fancyhdr 2017/06/30 v3.9a Extensive control of page headers and footer is the version installed there.

Best Answer

[Disclaimer: I'm a support personnel at Overleaf.] The RSC templates at https://www.overleaf.com/gallery/tagged/rsc-official have now all been updated so that they are compatible with TeX Live 2018 and newer. We've informed the RSC about our changes, but it looks like the direct link to the .zip at https://www.rsc.org/journals-books-databases/journal-authors-reviewers/author-tools-services/ hasn't been updated yet.

If you don't have an Overleaf account so can't download the updated template from Overleaf, you can make the following changes in your current files, to fix this issue:

Look for lines that look like this in your .tex file:


and delete them.

Next, look for the \vspace{3cm} near the \twocolumn[...]. Add the following before this \vspace{3cm}:


And change the \vspace{3cm} to \vspace{1em}.