Grocer editor takes role as William Reed ambassador

Beddall: not ready to retire

The Grocer is to get a new editor and a new look following the decision by  editor-in-chief Clive Beddall to step down after 38 years with the title.

Deputy editor Julian Hunt will take his place as editor and oversee a redesign. The new look is due to be unveiled by the end of the summer.

Beddall, 60, is taking six weeks sabbatical leave to go travelling before returning in August to take a part-time role as group editor-at-large. He said it would be "more of an ambassadorial role", working across several titles at William Reed as well as The Grocer.

"I have been here 38 years and it is a long time but I’m not ready to retire yet," he told Press Gazette.

He said he had always had an interest in the food industry and the job had also allowed him to indulge his "single passion in life"- travel.

"I like to think we have developed the magazine as a food chain magazine, not just grocery," he added.   Beddall joined The Grocer in 1964 as northern news editor.

He later moved up to become markets editor before spending eight years as editor-in-chief.

Prior to The Grocer, he worked for the Lancashire Evening Post, having trained as a journalist on The Reporter, Ashton-under-Lyme.  Hunt, 34, will be the title’s youngest editor in its 140-year history and he is hoping to increase subscriptions and news-stand sales with the new look.

"The last major relaunch was in 1997 and it is long overdue a new look," he said.

The revamp is expected to feature new fonts and sections and changes to the structure. "Our challenge is to improve things like sign-posting and find more content that is relevant to our readers," Hunt said.  The changes follow research among the magazine’s readers, including telephone polls on what they think of The Grocer and its rivals.

Hunt joined The Grocer in 1997 from Off Licence News. He was previously news editor on Packaging Week.

Sian Harrington, 34, and a former deputy editor of Retail Week, will take Hunt’s place as deputy editor.

 

Ruth Addicott

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