The demise of Colin Myler has seen the rise of Piers Morgan.
The Mirror editor has a new, lucrative five-year deal with Trinity Mirror and is to be "effectively editor-in-chief" of his own paper and the Sunday Mirror.
His new role will be akin to that filled by Paul Dacre at Associated Newspapers, in a strategy that will see Morgan and new Sunday Mirror editor Tina Weaver bring the papers into a close working partnership.
MGN managing director Mark Haysom said: "No one should doubt the achievement of Piers and his team in rejuvenating The Mirror. I now want to extend Piers’ influence over the Mirror’s sister title. He has worked closely with Tina in the past and will continue to do so in their new roles."
Morgan said he was looking forward, with Weaver, to bringing the papers together as "formidable editorial and commercial partners".
The two hoped to bring new ideas to the papers to stimulate sales. In a dig at The Sun’s recent coverage, he added chirpily: "This is a great day for cocky little chancers."
Weaver said: "The Sunday Mirror is a paper of great potential and I look forward to helping realise it. I want to bring some fresh energy to the title."
There was a talented team of journalists in place which she intended to add to in the next months, she stated.
Though Morgan does not yet get the title of editor-in-chief, it may well follow automatically if he is cleared by the DTI inquiry into Mirror share-tipping and dealing.
Internal changes on both titles were announced this week as Weaver returned from holiday. Her role will span both papers. She will continue to be editor-in-chief of The Mirror’s M magazine and oversee the M and Health sections in the main paper.
Her deputy at the Sunday Mirror will be Mark Thomas, currently assistant editor (features) on The Mirror. Myler’s deputy, Fiona Wyton, is in talks on a new role in the company.
Morgan has appointed assistant editor (sport) Des Kelly to take Weaver’s place as his deputy. Kelly has also been made head of sport of both the daily and Sunday and will continue to write his weekly column. Kelly’s deputy, Dean Morse, is to be The Mirror’s new sports editor.
The daily’s night editor, Mike Small, will become associate editor (production) at the Sunday Mirror. A plan for production teams working across both titles is being considered. Lloyd Embley gets Small’s job at The Mirror.
Simon Cosyns, Mirror associate editor, becomes group associate editor across the two papers, and Peter Willis, assistant editor of The Mirror, is made associate editor.
One of the reasons for the catastrophic publication of the Sunday Mirror article which stopped the £8m trial of the Leeds footballers and led to Myler’s resignation is perceived to have been the paper’s desire for an
exclusive on the case before The Mirror.
Competition like that will no longer be on the cards. The two Mirrors will work closely on buy-ups.
But there will be no seven-day operation, it is stressed, while the Sunday People will be treated much more as a separate entity, with less cross-promotion between it and the Mirror titles.
Weaver and Morgan are to spend the next six months working out a firm plan of action for the Mirrors.
Myler, whose tenure as editor was marked by consummate professionalism, has received hundreds of letters of support since and has been heartened by the coverage of the story in other papers, such as the Daily Mail, Guardian and Sunday Business, which have argued against the decision of Mr Justice Poole to stop the trial.
By Jean Morgan