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Journalists’ pay cut set to continue at North West daily

A journalists’ pay cut introduced for a temporary four-month period last November is set to continue for a further six months.

Editorial staff at the Oldham Evening Chronicle had their pay effectively reduced by 7pc over the period 1 December 2012 to 31 March in return for an extra week’s holiday.

Now bosses at the paper have confirmed they are in discussions with staff to extend the arrangement until the end of September.

It is understood that staff were informed of the move by letter on Monday afternoon.

The paper’s owners Hirst Kidd and Rennie Ltd said in a statement: “Like many newspapers, we’re finding that there is no glimmer of light at the end of the recession tunnel and that advertising revenue is likely to fall again this year.

“For that reason we are now in the process of consulting staff in order to extend the reduction in pay introduced last year.”

It is not clear whether staff are being offered any further additional holidays in return for the pay cut.

According to the most recent ABC figures, the Chronicle’s circulation fell 11.9pc in the period July to December 2012 compared to the previous year.

The newspaper, which has been in the Hirst family since the 1850s, now sells an average 12,019 copies a night.


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  • March 27, 2013 at 8:55 am

    It’s on to a loser sadly the Chron. A town in total decline – no industry, not many decent shops, population moving to the outskirts that are already served by weeklies, the MEN, Trinity Mirror, a poor football team. There’s mo money to advertise with in Oldham, and few business of any real note. Manchester is now a tram ride away, as is Bury, which is 10 times nicer. You may ask why it doesn’t go weekly, but the town is already served by a weekly and there is separation between the two. The staffing levels have plummeted, the building the Chron uses is meant for many times more staff and is in need of renovation. The staff work hard to produce what they do, and in no way I am knocking them. But Oldham really should not be supporting a daily, and on this evidence it isn’t. I see a very, very bleak future, bleaker than most.

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  • March 27, 2013 at 9:42 am

    Very, very bleak future, bleaker… does The Rough Guide to Oldham say much else?

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  • March 27, 2013 at 10:02 am

    I’m only being honest! Most of these Pennine towns are pretty grim now and times are hard there. Metrolink only takes people out of town, there’s no reason to go to Oldham or Rochdale. Bury thrives, but at the expense of these other medium-sized Pennine towns. It’s as easy for me to get to Rochdale or Oldham as to Bury (or Manchester). There’s no contest.

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