Trinity Mirror redundancies on former Local World titles in Herts and Essex see one editor take charge of three titles

Herts & Essex Observer farwell SNIP

Three newspapers will now be overseen by one editor following redundancies at Trinity Mirror titles in Hertfordshire and Essex.

Harlow Star editor Ken Morley and Herts and Essex Observer editor Paul Winspear have both been made redundant after a restructure cut five jobs in the region.

Hertfordshire Mercury editor Julie Palmer is now in charge of all three titles following their departure. She takes on the title of senior editor at Herts and Essex Newspapers.

Winspear began his career as a trainee reporter at the Observer in 1983 and took over as editor in 2006 after editing the Harlow Star and the Herts Mercury

In a farewell article, the 53-year-old said: “It has been a tremendous honour and a joy to have edited the paper and to have played a role in championing the communities it serves.”

Observer news editor Sinead Holland, 49, has also been made redundant.

Holland, who also started at the Observer aged 19, added: “It has been a huge privilege to meet and write about many inspirational people during my time at the Observer.”

Trinity Mirror bought regional publisher Local World, former owner of the affected titles, in a £220m deal in November last year.

The publisher has created one new role of a trainee digital sports reporter in Hertfordshire and Essex and has previously said there are no immediate plans to close any titles.

It was announced in June that seven jobs were also at risk at titles covering Cambridge were consultations are understood to be ongoing.

In the same month a “handful of roles” were said to be at risk at the Newcastle Chronicle and Journal, including two photographers, and three websites in Cornwall were to be merged to create a single hyperlocal news site for the region.

Trinity Mirror has said the changes are part of a group-wide push to improve the quality of its digital and print content.

A spokesperson referred Press Gazette to a previous statement that said: “In line with the strategy and approach across Trinity Mirror, the proposed changes focus on ensuring we have the right editorial structure to best deliver quality digital and print content to local audiences on the topics they are interested in, when they want it, how they want it.”

Staff in the South East, including titles in Essex, Kent and Surrey, have already been hit by 13 job losses, including a number of weekly editor roles, after the merger of 12 existing websites into three serving each county.

The NUJ has described the publisher’s ongoing restructures as a “merry-go-round of misery”.

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