Trinity Mirror has appointed Brian Aitken as the new editor of The Journal in Newcastle.
The editor’s chair at the morning paper fell vacant following the abrupt departure of Ged Henderson in October.
Aitken, 43, is currently editorial development manager based at Trinity Mirror Regionals’ head office in Liverpool.
He started his career at the Evening Express, Aberdeen, in 1978 and spent five months at the Thomson Regional Training Centre in Newcastle.
Before going to work at Trinity Mirror head office, he was assistant sports editor on the Daily Record in Glasgow. He has also been editor of the Lincolnshire Echo.
He said he planned to carry on work which had been started on identifying The Journal’s readership and tailoring the paper towards them.
He said: “The North East is a great place to live in and The Journal is a great newspaper to work for. I feel proud to be taking charge of such a highly respected title.
“It’s a fantastic ‘news’ newspaper and I look forward to working with a great team of people and taking The Journal forward.
“There’s a fairly clear agenda as to how to take The Journal forward: the biggest part of my job is to ensure the work in that agenda is carried out.”
Steve Brown, managing director of Newcastle Chronicle & Journal Ltd, said: “I am delighted that Brian will be joining us. He has lots of good, relevant experience and he is the ideal person to lead the ambitious development plan we have for The Journal.”
Taking over Aitken’s role at Trinity Mirror Regionals is Darren Thwaites, formerly deputy editor of the Aberdeen Evening Express, who joined the company in the spring.
The Journal has an ABC of 45,316, which compares with 96,831 for sister title the Evening Chronicle.
By Dominic Ponsford