Metro editor Tim Jotischky heads north in late September to take over the editorship of the Scottish Daily Mail while Ian McGregor comes back to the London HQ of Associated Newspapers with a "roving brief".
The pair are playing follow-my-leader in their careers. It is less than a year since Jotischky took over from McGregor at Metro. Their association began on the Daily Mail newsdesk where Jotischky was executive news editor and McGregor, news editor.
Both were seconded to Metro before its launch in March, 1999. McGregor stayed on as editor until he went to Glasgow to edit the Scottish Daily Mail in September last year.
Jotischky replaced him and McGregor poached his Metro deputy, Scotsman Kenny Campbell, to go with him. Campbell now returns to London to fill Jotischky’s post at Metro.
McGregor’s reappearance at Northcliffe House is already prompting speculation about his future. One of Associated editor-in-chief Paul Dacre’s favoured few; McGregor, 39, is considered to have a career path mapped out for him at the company.
He will be vying for an editorship with Martin Clarke, another former editor of the Scottish Daily Mail, but also of the Daily Record and The Scotsman, and another Associated favoured son who is back working for the company in a roving role, currently in Ireland.
The latest moves have been bubbling for some time, with Associated jumping the gun on the announcement on Monday to pre-empt leaks.
Jotischky said it would be a wrench for him to leave Metro – "a terrific paper, with a terrific staff".
During his time there, Associated has settled its fight in Manchester over a morning commuter paper with Guardian Media Group and launched Metro in Leeds and Sheffield with Regional Independent Media.
"It’s been very much a team effort. We have got the circulation up to 813,000 and we’ve really developed good relations with our franchise partners," said Jotischky. "There has been a sea change in the way those relations have developed from rivalry to working partnerships. That will be the key to future success."
He now looks forward to the opportunity of working in Scotland’s "very competitive market".
Of Campbell, Jotischky said: "He was part of the launch team and he is someone who knows Metro inside out and was very popular here. He is someone who understands the Metro culture, which will give a lot of continuity to the paper."
By Jean Morgan