A campaigning weekly editor has parted company with regional publisher Newsquest after 18 years in charge of two local titles.
He left Newsquest on Friday in the week that the paper’s cover price was increased from 60p to 90p following a redesign, and now plans to return to his freelance career.
It is not clear whether there are any plans to replace Steve, who first joined the BFP as news editor in 1989 before being promoted to editor five years later.
Steve’s successful campaigns included the long-running Hands Off Our Hospital fight to save NHS services in High Wycombe, launched in 2004.
It was backed by thousands of readers who were alarmed to see sections of their hospital being relocated to Stoke Mandeville in Aylesbury.
Last year, he won a notable victory when he secured 24-7 minor injury care at Wycombe Hospital – overturning plans to close the unit at night following the transfer of A&E to Aylesbury.
He also oversaw the BFP’s transformation from broadsheet to compact, as well as the implementation of two full-page make-up systems.
Said Steve: “I shall miss the BFP and Star’s fantastic readers and staff, but I’m 50 next month and am relishing the chance of some new challenges.
“I have no regrets and I had plenty of opportunity over the years to enjoy the wonderful privilege of being a local newspaper editor.
“When I joined as news editor in 1989, I actually didn’t like it at first but persuaded myself to stick it out for a year. So it’s fair to say I exceeded my own expectations after hanging on for almost a quarter of a century.
“I leave behind a fantastic staff and set of newspapers and wish them well for the future. I thank Newsquest for its support over many years and wish all the company’s papers the very best success. I now very much look forward to what happens next in my career.”