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May 16, 2019updated 30 Sep 2022 7:47am

Sheffield Star handed first new-look website in JPI Media digital revamp

By James Walker

The Sheffield Star has become the first of JPI Media’s news titles to be given a new-look website under the publisher’s digital revamping plans, with a quicker-loading website and fewer “intrusive ads”.

In an email to staff, JPI Media chief executive David King revealed other titles in the North Midlands and South Yorkshire were next in line.

Journalists at the publisher (formerly Johnston Press) were first told of plans to relaunch websites and apps in March, with bosses also said to be considering rolling out paywalls in the face of squeezed ad revenues.

The revamp comes after company chairman Parm Sandhu failed to load the Yorkshire Post website at a board meeting.

In his email, King said: “The site loads up to three seconds faster than our old site, it is lighter, simpler with less intrusive ads and puts content at the heart of the user experience.

“More new features are being added to the site over the coming weeks including the ability to swipe to next article and a new live blog template.

“Over the next couple of weeks the other North Midlands South Yorkshire titles will move to the new platform, followed by the north east.”

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The Star website design as of last month.

King added that all JPI Media news websites would be “re-platformed” by the end of this year.

Late last month JPI Media editor-in-chief Jeremy Clifford told staff that it was looking to restructure newsrooms to move journalists away from print production and instead focus on online content.

The planned restructure will be tested in the north east from June and is expected to last for three months.

JPI Media’s digital restructure has come months after Johnston Press titles were snapped up by bondholders in a pre-pack administration deal last year.

Picture: Sheffield Star

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