GMG to discuss 'range of options' for Channel M's future

Guardian Media Group is to consult with staff at Channel M over the likely future of the regional television station after the company agreed today to sell off its regional newspaper business.

Rival publisher Trinity Mirror confirmed that it would pay £44.8m to take control of 32 newspapers published by two GMG subsidiary companies, MEN Media and S&B Media.

The move hung an immediate question mark over Channel M, the Manchester-based TV station launched by MEN Media in February 2000, as it and two of GMG's Woking newspapers were not included in the deal.

Last April, following a review of the station's activities MEN Media decided to scale back Channel M's schedule and to cut around 40 of the station's 74 full-time to reduce costs.

A spokesman for GMG told Press Gazette the company would now talk to staff at Channel M about a "range of options" for its future.

The company will also now seek a buyer for the Woking Review and Woking News & Mail, the spokesman said.

Trinity Mirror said earlier it had declined to take control of the two weekly newspaper titles because it already owned newspapers in that area.

The regional publishing giant did not outline why it was not taking on Channel M.

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