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Tindle talks aim to resolve dispute over staff numbers

Talks will take place this week in a bid to resolve an ongoing dispute over the non-replacement of staff at Tindle Newspapers which has already seen six days of strike action.

Members of the National Union of Journalists working for the North London and Herts Newspapers in Enfield walked out last month over the publisher’s refusal to replace staff who left the nine papers.

Following the walkout, the NUJ chapel claimed there had been a lack of response from management at the titles, which the company denied, and HTFP reported yesterday they would hold a further ballot for strike action within the next few weeks.

But the NUJ now says its senior negotiators will meet with Tindle Newspapers later this week to try to resolve the dispute.

NUJ head of publishing Barry Fitzpatrick said: “The union is approaching our talks with management this week in a positive way, determined to achieve a solution on behalf of journalists who are concerned to see their newspapers operate in a stable atmosphere which safeguards the quality and content of the service they provide for the local community. 

“We believe that the talented team of journalists producing Tindle’s north London papers deserve the full backing of their management.

“It is management’s job to turn that committed journalism and community support into the cash needed to ensure proper staffing of the newspapers in the public interest.”

The NUJ chapel claimed more than a third of editorial staff at the titles, which includes the Enfield Advertiser, Enfield Gazette, the Winchmore Hill Advertiser & Herald and the Haringey Advertiser, had left without being replaced which was affecting the quality of the papers.

A statement from the Tindle board when the strike started warned it could have to make its first editorial redundancies since the recession started at the Enfield centre because of losses at the titles.

When the further strike ballot was announced, Peter Edwards, managing director of the publisher’s London Weekly Newspapers, said he hoped to work with the NUJ to get the papers back into profit.