Johnston Press titles on the south coast of England set to be subbed in Peterborough

Johnston Press titles as far afield as the Hastings Observer in East Sussex and The News in Portsmouth are to be subbed at a new centralised hub in Peterborough, it is proposed.

The move comes two years after the creation of a centralised hub in Horsham, West Sussex, to sub around 40 weekly and daily titles across the south coast. Many staff left the company at that time rather than face mammoth two or three-hour each way commutes.

According to the Holdthefrontpage seven jobs have been placed at risk or redundancy by the move. Peterborough is some 130 miles from Horsham.

There has been a widespread trend across the regional press in recent years to transplant subbing away from local titles to regional centres. Editors have bemoaned the loss of local knowledge built up over many years and the fact that reporters no longer have the same access to experienced journalists at their local centres.

Critics of the moves have also questioned why, when information technology means journalists can work anywhere, companies like Johnston Press are obsessed with centralising production at physical offices with the huge disruption for long-serving employees this has caused.

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