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Up to 40 jobs to go in regional publisher’s shared content push

Up to 40 production jobs are set to be lost and 15 new roles created as part of a regional publisher’s plan to use more shared content in its newspapers.

Trinity Mirror has announced the planned redundancies across its regional portfolio, with centres around the country thought to be affected.

However, the company says up to 15 new roles will also be created as part of the changes which will see the use of its shared content and central data units extended.

It has also announced the launch of a new page-ready service from its data unit for daily and weekly publications.

TM revealed yesterday that six roles could be lost, and one created, at Cheltenham as part of changes which will see Gloucester daily The Citizen go weekly along with the Gloucestershire Echo.

However the 25 net job losses announced today do not include the Cheltenham-based roles.

Trinity Mirror’s Cheltenham centre, where some of the jobs are set to be lost

As well as the Cheltenham centre where the two dailies are currently produced, other centres known to be affected include Truro, where six roles could go with most of the subbing operation moving to Plymouth.

The National Union of Journalists has claimed the plans will also see the end of print production at Chester and, eventually, Colwyn Bay with all the group’s North West titles produced in Liverpool.

The union also says there will be a new regional production centre in the East Midlands, resulting in redundancies in Leicester, together with further cuts in Huddersfield, Newcastle, Coventry and Birmingham.

Trinity Mirror has declined to give a breakdown of where the jobs are at risk other than to say the changes are taking place across the group.

A company spokesman said: “As part of the continued evolution of our newsrooms we are announcing a further extension of the role of our successful shared content unit and data unit in providing top quality content for our print titles.

“There will be a more synchronised approach to the use of shared pages by our daily titles, plus the launch of a new page-ready service from our Data Unit for daily and weekly publications. We will also continue to develop our regionalised production approach to ensure we work in an efficient and consistent way.

“We are also announcing an extension to our relationship with the Press Association, which will provide us with a page-ready national/international news service to supplement our SCU and Data Unit output, creating a common spine of high quality print content for editors to use.

“We have begun consulting with staff on up to 40 redundancies across Trinity Mirror Regionals. Up to 15 new roles are being created. The majority of roles lost will be related to print production.”

Martin Shipton, chair of Trinity Mirror Group Chapel for the NUJ, said: “We are very concerned at the implications of these further cuts. Having more content produced centrally risks damaging the individual identity of the papers.

“The main selling point of regional and local papers remains their regional and local content. Watering that down is a self-defeating strategy.”

Laura Davison, NUJ national organiser, added: “Jargon about a ‘more synchronised approach’ and ‘aligning design structures’ can’t hide the fact that these are bad old fashioned job cuts affecting several Trinity Mirror centres around the country.

“More generic content across the titles and an increase in user generated content if it is at the expense of other coverage such as courts and councils, means short-changing local readers.”

5 comments

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  • September 13, 2017 at 11:52 am
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    “Top quality content for our print titles” in fact refers to the increasingly-used bland generic national features with no regional or local connection whatsoever and a selection of gaudy shopping pages full of pictures of handbags or socks.

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  • September 13, 2017 at 12:24 pm
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    Y’know, I dread logging into this site each day to see what catastrophe has befallen our much-maligned but-beloved industry.
    I’m curious to see what happens when the shiny suits and skirts at the top have no one left to offer consultation with.

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  • September 13, 2017 at 12:39 pm
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    There will be fewer genuine local stories and lots of irrelevant features and fillers.

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  • September 13, 2017 at 1:32 pm
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    Our local paper relaunched its property section this year with plenty of features from this shared content unit. The majority of our readers come from traditional council estates, so the feature on 1970s American sitcom star Suzanne Somers selling her Hollywood home for $13 million must have come in really handy.

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  • September 14, 2017 at 9:51 am
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    Cut, cut and cut again until there’s nothing left. Then the suits in charge of regional newspapers can move on to something else to decimate in similar fashion while all the time collecting their fat salaries and pension pots.

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