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Former Sunday Express editor Martin Townsend moves into PR after newspaper exit

Former Sunday Express editor Martin Townsend is moving into PR, joining communications firm Pagefield as a partner in the new year.

Townsend left the Sunday Express in August after 17 years at the helm, having moved from celebrity magazine OK!.

He was the last of the former Express and Star editors to remain in his role after the tiles were taken over by Daily Mirror publisher Reach in February.

Townsend joins Pagefield on 2 January 2019 and will work with “clients across all sectors”, according to an announcement by the firm.

Among its clients are broadcaster ITN, defence manufacturer BAE Systems and power company EDF Energy.

In a statement on his appointment, Townsend described Pagefield as “the most effective and forward-thinking agency in the business”.

He added: “I bring with me a wealth of experience, contacts and enthusiasm gleaned from the unique perspective of national newspaper and magazine editorships. I can’t wait to get started.”

Pagefield praised Townsend’s record at the Sunday Express and OK! for “breaking world exclusives such as Prince Harry’s romance with Meghan Markle” and starting the paper’s mental health campaign.

Pagefield also announced that it was hiring Dr David Bull of the Jeremy Vine Show to work on its “health and wellness” portfolio.

ABC figures for the first six months of this year found that the Sunday Express saw its circulation fall by a little over 10 per cent year-on-year.

Picture: Pagefield

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