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KM Group announces new editorial director

A south-east newspaper publisher has announced the appointment of its new editorial director.

Ian Carter, left, is currently editor-in-chief of Northcliffe’s East Surrey and Sussex News and Media division and will join the Kent-based group in December.

He replaces Simon Irwin who left the company in March.

KM Group MD Graham Mead said: “We are absolutely delighted that we have been able to tempt someone with Ian’s knowledge and experience to join us.

“He has shown a huge vote of confidence in the way the group is developing and enhancing its business to ensure that we continue to be Kent’s leading media group.”

Ian is currently responsible for a range of titles including Kent and Sussex Courier, Sevenoaks Chronicle, Croydon Advertiser and Surrey Mirror.

He began his journalism career with the Colchester Evening Gazette and later joined the Brighton Evening Argus where he spent three years as head of news.

Ian then worked with Teletext on the launch of its website and also worked as a senior broadcast journalist for the BBC before joining the Croydon Advertiser series as its group editor in 2002.

He said: “We all know the media business is in the thick of the fight of its life but I am a firm believer that newspaper groups willing to embrace the opportunities offered by new media will continue to flourish.

“The KM Group is one of those. With its strong newspapers, attractive websites and lively radio stations the KM has consistently demonstrated a readiness to change and adapt for an exciting and successful future.”


Sleepless in Selsdon (07/09/2009 15:04:19)
Northcliffe’s loss is KM’s gain. Good news man who will stand up for editorial.

Debs (08/09/2009 11:06:03)
Best of British – hope you survive longer than your predecessor and don’t go the way of the scores of talented KM journos who were axed last year. You’ll do OK if you’re a yes man.

Beano Bob (08/09/2009 13:22:15)
Can’t understand the logic behind this move, unless Carter was gently pushed.
The KM made a load of redundancies last year but is still, if the rumours are to be believed, in a spot of trouble. Just look at the latest ABCs, especially for their Gravesend title which has lost almost a quarter of its sale.
As for banging on about new media, at local level people are just not interested in it.

Theo Gould (08/09/2009 15:26:45)
Spot on Debs. A safe, bland company obviously wants safe, bland company people and by all accounts Carter fits the bill.
As for your assertion Sleepless that he’ll ‘stand up for editorial'; He better hurry, the way things are going the KM won’t have any editorial left soon.

Debs (08/09/2009 16:31:09)
“Knowledge and experience”, eh? Let’s look at the ABCs…
Kent & Sussex Courier -8.2%
Sevenoaks Chronicle -6.1%
Croydon Advertiser -10.9% (are you impressed yet?)
Surrey Mirror -3.4%
Some track record. Must have looked good on the CV.
Let’s hope that Mr Carter can weave his particular brand of magic at the KM.

Jason P Eddy (09/09/2009 11:31:20)
Fair point Debs, but how about East Kent Gazette (up 4.4%), Dover Express (up 19%), Medway News (up 93.50%) or – brace yourself – Herne Bay Times/ Whit Times (up a staggering 158%)?
Meanwhile, at the KM: Kentish Gazette (down 12.8%), Gravesend Messenger (down 24.7% ouch!) and Herne Bay Gazette (13.6%).
Mr Cater, methinks might very have jumped out of the frying pan into the fire.
As for the KM’s radio stations? Have you ever listened to them? Radio for proles. Absolute rubbish!

Current hack (09/09/2009 11:46:54)
One thing I don’t you will get is bland.

Bob (09/09/2009 11:59:13)
Jason P Eddy – you neglect to mention they are part free, part paid-for titles

Jason P Eddy (09/09/2009 12:19:51)
As far as I’m aware, East Kent Gazette and Dover Express are straight paid-fors.
Thanks anyway Mr Baldwin

Harry Fowler’s backpack (09/09/2009 12:22:00)
Re Mr Carter joining the KM:
Can I be the first to say: IT’S A CASE OF THE BLAND LEADING THE BLAND.

JB (09/09/2009 13:33:28)
There was a time after it switched to tabloid that the Croydon Advertiser was all you could want in a local paper. Journalists were given the time and backing to pull in some genuine hard-hitting scoops and campaigns and some of them made careers for themselves on the nats as a result. Whether you can do the same on the KM’s depleted resources is a different matter!

Ex-staffer (09/09/2009 13:40:19)
In answer to Beanobob it’s probably not such a strange move when you consider what Northcliffe has done to its titles since taking over from Trinity Mirror Southern. I, along with my colleagues, had the choice of being made redundant or relocating from Surrey to a subbing factory 60 miles (and one Thames crossing) away in Essex. I took the cash rather than see papers we had all worked hard on and were proud of have the life sucked out of them. Anybody would be well advised to give them a wide berth.

Beano Bob (09/09/2009 14:31:45)
Valid point ex-staffer, and one made with the kind of passion we’ce come to expect from sub editors over the years.
Local newspaper managers don’t understand local newspapers, on that I think we can all agree. At the end of the day all they’re looking at is minus and plus sign on the end of year profit sheet.
As Max Hastings was very fond of saying: WHY HAVE A DOG AND BARK YOURSELF?

localhack (09/09/2009 14:47:42)
A bit baffled by the bland descriptions – certainly not the IC I know, who was the most risk-taking editor I’ve worked for.
As for why he’s left, I reckon Ex-staffer has hit the nail on the head . . .

Sleepless in Selsdon (09/09/2009 15:11:42)
I don’t think any editors worth their salt would fancy hanging around while their titles are subbed in an anonymous call centre-style hangar, particularly ones who liked to roll their sleeves up and get stuck in, which I think is the case here. The atmosphere here isn’t what it was. A shame.

Anon (09/09/2009 16:50:29)
I can only add my confusion to the ‘bland’ comments. The Surrey Mirror transformed itself from a stuffy council-led broadsheet into a campaigning, brave tabloid under Ian’s editorship and rightly picked up the HTFP newspaper of the year in 2008. Staff have already been through some major upheaval this year and are now concerned aboout who may take over.

SM (11/09/2009 09:17:32)
To be honest I think this is a great appointment for the KM. You won’t find many journalists who have worked with IC who have a bad word to say about him, and he always puts papers first. Whenever he has had to make difficult or unpopular decisions he explains it to you face to face. Good luck in the new job.

Saintlurker (11/09/2009 10:25:11)
Any journalist worth his or her salt will flourish under Ian Carter’s editorship – a genuine newspaperman and a top bloke. Just don’t get him on to indie music circa 86-92 though.

Dirk (15/09/2009 11:35:59)
I’d like to say I worked with Ian at Extreme Artexing magazine back in the late 70s, but that would be an out and out lie.
I do, however, have some experience of working for the KM. My fondest memory of that period was eating lunch (alone) in my car. A Ginsters never gave such sweet relief.

Mary, ex-sub (15/09/2009 13:04:15)
I have it on good authority that the KM have come up with a ‘fighting fund’ with which to try and stop the rot, especially in East Kent where they have been taken by surprise by Northcliffe’s hybrid papers. This fund paid for Carter.
Rumour is that in this week’s papers the KM are giving a free truss to every reader (posted and package must be paid).

Marshall Cavendish (15/09/2009 13:06:18)
I ente
red Goose Green with Max Hastings. He turned to me and smiled. he said: “WHY HAVE A DOG AND BARK YOURSELF?”
And that, in a nutshell, is the story of my life

Gregory Proops (16/09/2009 12:29:20)
I would like to say that I worked with Ian Carter on Caravan Conversion Weekly back in the early 1930s, but that would obviously be pure fiction.
However, I too was in Goose Green for the second leg of the Dukla Prague-Honved Cup Winners’ Cup quarter-final back in 1985, and remember clearly what Max Hastings said to me.
He said: “Why have a dog, Greg, and bark yourself?”

Derek Smalls (11/11/2009 16:09:20)
As Robert maxwell once said to me:

Sam Johnson (28/01/2010 09:13:28)
First left at Mortimer Street, continue across the mini-roundabout and then take the first right. Harris Road is either the second or third turning on your right.

Little Ern, Ponderosa (26/05/2010 16:05:33)
Once you come off the main road follow the one way system. If you drive past the big Tesco’s you’ve gone too far. Turn around at the dry cleaners, back past the Tesco’s and then left at Yeading Street. The office is second on the left, in Cleveland Gardens