New Times editor Harding reshuffles editorial pack

New Times editor James Harding has reshufffled his editorial pack just over a month after taking over Robert Thomson.

James Harding has promoted executive editor Keith Blackmore to the job of deputy editor moving Ben Preston to the job of editor International Editions of The Times.

Diplomatic editor Richard Beeston has been promoted to the job of foreign editor and existing foreign editor Roland Watson has been given a new role in charge of all news coverage through the week in the newspaper and online.

Harding said: “Keith Blackmore is one of Britain’s most exceptional journalists and I am delighted he is taking up the role of deputy editor. He has more than 20 years’ experience at The Times, having started on the sports desk, run Times Online in its infancy and brought star writers into the paper’s fold. He has strong news judgment, creative flair and a love of fine writing.”

On Watson he said: “Roland Watson has commanded the respect of his colleagues, both as a sharp-witted reporter and as a thoughtful editor. With Roland in charge of the news operations, The Times will drive forward its great tradition of breaking great stories, providing insightful analysis and setting the terms of the national debate.”

Preston’s new job will see him head up partnership deals to supply content in 22 countries and special editions of the paper which are published in Japan, Poland, Dubai and The Gulf.

Commenting on Preston’s job change he said: ‘Over the past decade Ben Preston has helped to lead the paper through a transformational period as it embraced the internet and moved to its compact format. He has been an outstanding deputy to two previous editors, and with great skill and vigour as acting editor ran the paper for one year. This position will enable The Times to fulfill the potential of its reputation and history around the world.’

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