By Sarah Lagan
Marc Reeves decided to step out of his senior managerial role at Trinity Mirror Southern to become an editor again "for the reason journalists get into the business in the first place".
The native Brummie told Press Gazette: "There’s nothing like editing a newspaper in terms of the job satisfaction."
Reeves has spent the past five years as editorial director at TMS, overseeing 83 titles, working on numerous relaunches and "product improvements", most recently the Reading Chronicle, the paper he formerly edited.
He said: "I have learned an incredible amount over the past few years since I last edited day-to-day. It’s time to try to reapply what I have learned in the intervening years."
Reeves is determined to raise the profile of his prestigious home city paper. "The Birmingham Post has got such a reputation and such a level of influence in the West Midlands,"
"The challenge is to make sure it is living up to that reputation. The Post has to play a part in the debate that is raging in the Midlands about whether the area is punching its weight, when you compare it to how people in the Northwest and Northeast champion their economy, social issues and everything else."
Sales of the Post have dwindled from 17,238 in 2002 to 13,366 last year. In the 1990s, when Chris Oakley was in charge, he said he wanted to push the title’s circulation to 30,000.
Reeves said: "The last ABCs showed a 3 per cent increase. There are always loads of factors, but I think a lot of that increase is due to people actually going into the shops and buying it.
"It shows you can move sales in the right direction. All these past Post readers haven’t just died, they are just getting their information from other sources and it’s a case of saying ‘where have they gone and what can we give them?’."
The paper is currently running an e:edition, available online at a discounted price, as in Newcastle.
Reeves said: "It will be interesting to see the uptake of that and we will look at how to develop websites, and in other areas. It’s something I will be keeping a very close eye on."
Joining Trinity in 1997, Reeves was chief sub on the Chronicle & Echo in Northampton before becoming deputy to editor Keith Sutton at the Carlisle News & Star and Cumberland News.
He then edited the Reading Chronicle and weekly titles before becoming editorial director at TMS, which has imposed a series of redundancies.
Reeves replaces Fiona Alexander, who has moved into health PR.