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Editorial staff to learn how many jobs face axe

Editorial staff at Archant’s Norfolk newspapers will find out tomorrow how many jobs could be lost there.

The company is planning to merge its production and subbing departments and sports desks across its daily and weekly titles, and “worst-case scenario” figures are to be announced during a meeting at its Prospect House headquarters at 4.30pm.

Staff at the Norwich Evening News and Eastern Daily Press are affected, along with those working on the division’s 14 weekly papers which includes the Great Yarmouth Mercury, Lowestoft Journal, Diss Mercury and the free Advertiser series.

The Evening News and EDP currently have their own individual subbing and production units and there is also a separate unit which looks after the production of all the weeklies, but the plan is to combine the three departments to create one big unit.

The same is planned for the sports desks.

The changes follow a review of the way the newsroom works by independent consultants, and a second company is currently looking at data processes and workflows.

Once this review is complete and staff have been consulted a final redundancy figure will be set.

Archant Norfolk managing director Barry Dennis told HoldtheFrontPage: “From the work done so far we have an idea of how many job cuts there are likely to be.

“Over the next couple of weeks there will be more observations and until these are complete it is hard to confirm numbers. What staff will be told on Tuesday is a worst-case scenario.”

He said redundancies would “ideally” be achieved through volunteers, and if this was not possible then a selection process would be worked out based on individual skill sets.

A union spokesman said members were waiting to hear specific figures before deciding on the way forward.