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March 13, 2013

24 editorial jobs to go as Archant looks to share content across East Anglia

By Andrew Pugh

Twenty-four editorial jobs are at risk of redundancy at regional publisher Archant under plans to centralise production across its East Anglia titles.

The publisher has also announced plans to share more content across the Ipswich Star, East Anglian Daily Times, Norwich Evening News and Eastern Daily Press.

Under those plans four editorial roles are at risk in Suffolk and six in Norwich.

In a statement the company said: “After a review of the way the company produces its newspapers in Norfolk and Suffolk, it is proposing to create one combined editorial production unit in Norwich to serve all its Norfolk and Suffolk newspaper titles, including four daily titles and 19 weekly titles.”

Archant said this will “enable it to be more flexible and efficient in managing its day-to-day editorial resources”.

If the proposal goes ahead it will see the majority of Suffolk’s editorial production work moving to Norwich, resulting in a further 14 production roles in Suffolk being put at risk of redundancy.

The company added: “A small editorial production team will remain based in Ipswich, along with reporters, writers and photographers, meaning there will still be about 50 front-line journalists based in Suffolk.

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The news comes a day after Archant reported £2.2m losses for the 2012 financial year and revealed it was facing a possible £13m bill from the taxman.

Archant Anglia managing director Johnny Hustler said:  “Archant Anglia, like many media businesses, continues to face extremely challenging trading situations. It is important we do all we can to reduce the cost of producing our newspapers, while retaining as many front-line reporting staff as possible.

“The future of our business depends on creating compelling local content and delivering that to our audiences through our traditional print and emerging digital products, but at a cost we can afford,” he added. “It is hoped that we can continue to operate professionally and sympathetically during the consultation period.”

Consultation with those staff at risk of redundancy from these proposals has begun today.




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