His role will include working with editorial teams across the country to position the group’s titles for a multi-platform future.
The appointment will initially be a 12-month secondment and an announcement on who will replace Toby in Dorset in the interm will be made shortly.
The US-owned company is the latest regional publishing group to embark on a newsroom transformation programme.
Trinity Mirror introduced its digital-first ‘Newsroom 3.1′ blueprint across its regional centres last year, Johnston Press is trialling a new-look newsroom at its North Midlands titles, while Local World has a “transformation room” to which centres give a daily progress report.
Henry Faure Walker, chief executive of Newsquest said: “This exciting new appointment is an important part of our editorial plans as we seek to continually improve and innovate the way we publish the best local content both in print and online.
“Toby has a strong track record and the right experience to be a great fit for this role which will see him work closely with our dedicated editorial teams across the country.”
Toby, pictured above, added: “I am delighted to have been given this fantastic opportunity. These are challenging but exciting times for regional media.
“Clearly the future is multi-platform and we need to transform our newsrooms so we can provide the highest quality content first, fast and best.”
Toby began his career in journalism 25 years ago on the Sunday People. At the age of 26, he became editor of The Wharf, which was named Free Weekly Newspaper of the Year at the UK Regional Press Awards during his tenure.
Following roles as assistant editor and then deputy editor of the Oxford Mail, he became editor of the Dorset Echo in 2009, increasing its sales in his first year by 2.1pc.
Toby was appointed group editor of both the Dorset Echo and Bournemouth Daily Echo on the departure of Neal Butterworth in 2011, shortly before being named Newsquest’s editor of the Year.
During his editorship the Daily Echo has been awarded EDF Energy’s Daily Newspaper of the Year in 2013 and the number of monthly combined visitors on Newsquest Dorset’s websites has trebled to 1.2m.
In his new role, Toby will report to Gavin Steacy, Newsquest’s regional managing director for Wales, Gloucestershire and Midlands South.
Newsquest Dorset managing director, Vincent Boni, said: “Plans to replace Toby for the duration of the secondment are in progress and an announcement will be made shortly.”