A “heroic effort” has seen the Birmingham Post and Mail titles as well as the Sunday Mercury say farewell to their city centre offices and move in to a new combined newsroom at Fort Dunlop.
The move has been accompanied by the introduction of new technology and the axing of 65 out of 300 editorial jobs. Birmingham Mail editor Steve Dyson is shortly to also take over the editorship of award-winning sister title the Sunday Mercury.
It was bloody hard graft all round. Friday saw us producing the Mail, Post and Mercury from Printing House Street AND packing our ‘bags’ to move.
On Saturday and Sunday the removal firm sprang into action (well done BMG, IT and project manager Richard Newbould).
And by 12 noon yesterday when the journalists turned up for the Post shift (and Mail overnight pages), the whole editorial floor was ready for us to continue as if nothing had happened!
The result? The Post came out this morning, followed by the Mail later today, without a major hitch. Plenty of problems. but all tackled by heroic efforts all round. Not a missed page between us. (Production of the Mercury continued at Printing House Street until end of play Saturday, and will be continued in the Fort from tomorrow for next Sunday’s edition)
He also has a “picture exclusive” of the first news conference for the converged news team:
The picture is proof, Dyson says, that the Mail, Mercury and Post are working together.
The caption info says it all:
(Left to right) Steve Dyson (Birmingham Mail Editor), Stacey Barnfield (Executive Editor, Birmingham Mail), Andy Richards (Content Editor, Birmingham Mail), Gemma Tandy, standing, (newspaper sales), Sarah Probert, (Content Editor, Birmingham Post), James Cartledge, (Assistant Content Editor, Birmingham Mail), Fionnuala Bourke, (Assistant Content Editor, Sunday Mercury), Tony Larner, (Content Editor, Sunday Mercury), Marc Reeves, (Editor, Birmingham Post), Phil Vinter, (Assistant Content Editor, Video).
Dyson says that everyone works across all the “brands” but that desk heads also have spefic responsibilities for their titles.
Tuesday’s Mail splash about a plus £7,000 Christmas party planned by council chiefs was evidence of the new converged way of working – it was written by former Post reporter Paul Dale.