Liverpool Echo arts correspondent keeps job after McGovern comments

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The Liverpool Echo’s arts correspondent of 30 years Joe Riley has kept his job despite being publically criticised for his behaviour on BBC Radio Merseyside by film maker Jimmy McGovern.

McGovern made his comments after the premiere of King Cotton, his first stage production in 20 years, at Liverpool Empire Theatre in September. Press Gazette understands that the playwright and filmmaker was annoyed when Riley, sat a few seats away from him in the theatre, fell asleep during the performance.

Riley was suspended from work but on Tuesday returned to the office as normal. Staff had been organising a petition to hand into management to demand his reinstatement.

Michael Ricketts, NUJ father of chapel for the Post and Echo, said: ‘The issue has been resolved and both Joe and the management would like to draw a line under it.”

Editor Alastair Machray refused to comment as it was ‘an internal matter”.

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