Picture editor Stuart Nicol, set to leave the Daily Record in January for The Mail on Sunday, is to stay with the paper where he has worked for the nearly six years. His decision to remain in Glasgow has cost him a five-figure salary rise.
Record editor Peter Cox concentrated on persuading Nicol to stay after Lynn Cullen, picture editor of The Independent, pulled out of replacing Nicol this month.
"If he hadn’t resigned, I wouldn’t have wanted anyone else. He is a very, very good picture editor," said Cox.
Nicol’s decision has meant promotions both at the Record and the MoS.
Deputy picture editor Liz Cocks, acting picture editor of the MoS since August, has now been confirmed in the post.
At the Record, where freelance Patrick Blandford will not now get his new job – he was to have been part of the package agreed with Cullen – Alastair Baird, a former Scotsman picture editor and now No.3 on the Record back bench, becomes deputy picture editor.
Nicol’s photographers and other colleagues at the paper helped him make his hard choice. He told Press Gazette: "I was given a unique opportunity that you don’t often get. It was such a difficult decision [to decide to stay]. I didn’t sleep for three or four days. Anybody south of Watford will think, ‘What is he doing? He must be mad’."
Nicol, who said he was partly motivated by a decision to put his family first, added: "The MoS was fantastic. I would never rule out going to London but a combination of circumstances at this point in time made it impossible."
Cocks joined the MoS in 1999 after five years at the News of the World where she had been assistant then deputy picture editor and part of an all-woman picture desk, with Cullen as picture editor. Previously she worked at Today.
"I’m so thrilled I’m squealing like a child," laughed Cocks, who will have responsibility for seven people on the desk as well as the MoS’s photographers.
by Jean Morgan