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Northcliffe MD steps down after 16 years with company

A managing director at Northcliffe Media is set to leave his job on Friday after 16 years with the company.

Andrew Blair, the managing director for the South West Media Group, has decided to leave the regional publisher and will be replaced in the role by Blanche Sainsbury, left, who is currently MD of South West Wales Media Group.

Andrew began his career at Northcliffe in 1996 in Aberdeen, moving to Gloucestershire in 2005 as managing director before joining the South West Media Group in 2010.

In that role, he was responsible for converting Exeter’s Express and Echo and the Torquay Herald Express from daily to weekly titles.

Andrew said: “I wish Northcliffe the very best and would like to pay special tribute to the great team I leave behind in Devon. The SWMG business is one of the industry’s flagship businesses and I am proud to have played a part in its development.”

Executive director Rich Mead said: “I’d like to thank Andrew for his hard work and commitment during his 16 years with the business. He leaves with our support and best wishes. I look forward to working with Blanche to further develop the South West Media business.”

Blanche will take on Andrew’s current role alongside her own until 3 September when she will move permanently to Devon and the search is now on for her successor in South West Wales.

She has worked for Northcliffe for 26 years, starting out in Devon where she spent the first 13 years, rising through the ranks to become advertisement director there in 1999.

Blanche has held a number of senior roles in the company, including deputy managing director in Bristol, holding her current role of MD for the last four years.


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  • July 25, 2012 at 4:23 pm

    Yes good luck Andrew – at good bloke – I knew him from the early days after NM took over Aberdeen.
    Blanche back to her old stomping grounds!
    It’s good to hear that the ex DMGT crowd actually know who Andrew is – nice one!
    One of the last good uns – can’t be many left who actually understand regional press.

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