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Long-serving editor of seven weeklies quits 'with immediate effect'

Paul WalkerA group editor responsible for seven weeklies, including one he has run for nearly 16 years, has quit his role “with immediate effect”.

Staff serving under Paul Walker, pictured left, at the Newsquest titles were told on Thursday afternoon of his departure.

Paul had been responsible for overseeing the Stourbridge News, Halesowen News, Dudley News, Kidderminster Shuttle, Bromsgrove Advertiser and Droitwich Advertiser.

He also departs from the Redditch and Alcester Advertiser, which he had edited since January 1999.

An announcement sent out to staff by Newsquest Worcester and Stourbridge managing director Trevor Sallis reads: “Paul Walker, group editor for Stourbridge Division has resigned his position and left the company with immediate effect.

Peter John currently group editor of Worcester Division will take over Stourbridge Division in addition to his current responsibilities.

“I would like to thank Paul for his contribution to the company and wish Peter every success in his new position.”

Originally from Zimbabwe, Paul began his journalism career on the country’s national newspaper, The Herald.

He moved to the UK in 1983, joining the St Albans Review, and also worked for a series of weekly newspapers in North London, which included the Hendon Times, before moving to the Birmingham Evening Mail.

Before joining the Redditch Advertiser he had been deputy editor and chief sub-editor the Kidderminster Shuttle, which he had joined in 1989.

He had held the position of group editor at the Stourbridge Division since April, when he took on the editorship of the Shuttle following Clive Joyce’s retirement.

21 comments

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  • December 8, 2014 at 9:03 am
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    Is there a warehouse somewhere in the country where they keep all the editors who have ‘departed’ over the last two or three years?
    There are dozens of them missing, never to be seen or heard of again.
    Where are they? Who’s got them and what are they being used for?

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  • December 8, 2014 at 9:29 am
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    HTFP contributors working for the group should spill the beans on what has been going on here to help other journalists facing similar situations.
    To be forewarned is to be forearmed, as they say.

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  • December 8, 2014 at 9:51 am
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    I agree with the first post – where are all these senior editorial people going? – and endorse the recommendation of the second – someone in the know should let us know. People 16 years in a job simply don’t go overnight unless gross professional misconduct has occurred or they have been “terminated”.

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  • December 8, 2014 at 9:54 am
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    Perhaps, come the new year, HTFP will give us the total of 2014’s departed editors, together with an indication of how many remain?

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  • December 8, 2014 at 10:48 am
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    Perhaps he became very, very tired editing no fewer than seven newspapers?

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  • December 8, 2014 at 10:53 am
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    He have me a job in journalism when most editors would not have touched me with a barge pole, due to my Birmingham Mail Youtube exit. And he’s probably crashed me a 1000 fags over the last five years. Good luck boss!

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  • December 8, 2014 at 11:11 am
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    Don’t know him, but maybe he was a dedicated print journo? These are now surplus to requirements. Need to be an IT whizz with little or no passion for journalism or indeed proper written English. You will go far but I suspect not for long.

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  • December 8, 2014 at 12:38 pm
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    Want to know what’s happened to one redundoed editor?
    Here’s precis of last two years following the back stabbing and redundo after many years as Editor and even more with company.
    Looked after sick relatives, got good subbing job for a year with national newspaper, which has now been reduced to no days a week as that company tightened up on freelances. Applied for 145 other jobs, in newspapers and PR and charity. Got 15 interviews, got to last two in most or second interview, then job went to someone who was already working for company. Done a bit of cabbying and parcel delivery and journalism freelancing that has not paid many bills. Sold many possessions and have done and continue to do much charity work, which is very rewarding, but pays nil. If there is a warehouse of editors, tell me where and I’ll go if they need a night watchman!

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  • December 8, 2014 at 1:17 pm
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    This sort of thing is a personal disaster for people not near retirement, as minimal pay off soon drips away. But who cares in the boardrooms and HR departments despite the weasal words?

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  • December 8, 2014 at 1:54 pm
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    Sorry to hear that redundoed editor. I too have been given a similar ‘new opportunity’ very recently. Happily, I can get by for the moment but the job situation is, at best, disheartening. I’m convinced that too many jobs – in general – are written to put people off applying!

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  • December 8, 2014 at 2:10 pm
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    There have been other Newsquest editors – and in other groups – who have quickly left in a marked manner in the last two or three years. Some just never even clear their desks or say farewell to staff.
    Shrinking circulations, accountants who report on poor revenues and senior management who want more economies “until the pips squeak.”
    Yes, it would be interesting to see a count of the number of eds cast out and an even larger number of reporters and photogs.
    There are now a lot of lowly paid “content editors” who were quickly promoted from senior reporter level, after eds were fired, and are simply glad to cling on to a job having been flattered by the job offer. Also a lot more “group editors” overseeing several organs.

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  • December 8, 2014 at 2:36 pm
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    I’d like to think they’ve all been squirreled away as part of a secret plan to create a super-paper and have been spending the last couple of years working on how to make digital work successfully.
    Soon, their plan will be hatched and they’ll take over the industry (buying up the numpties who are currently making a dreadful hash of things) and then employ all us decent journos who are left in a Utopia of news.
    Maybe.

    PS: Redundoed editor – you should speak to someone at HTFP. It sounds like you’ve got an industry story that needs to be told.

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  • December 8, 2014 at 3:01 pm
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    I worked with Paul in Kidderminster in the early 90s and I’m sorry to see he’s gone in such a way. A good pro and a loss to the trade, what’s left of it.

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  • December 8, 2014 at 4:55 pm
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    I gave up editing because of the total bollox both myself and my staff were having to put up with from knee jerk employers. I initially retired but was offered freelance opportunities in regional and national print press. Maybe I am the lucky one, I now go to work when I want and because I want to – and I really enjoy it…and actually feel appreciated.

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  • December 8, 2014 at 5:42 pm
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    How come it’s never waste of space directors they get rid of? We have directors of marketing,digital content and even video.

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  • December 8, 2014 at 8:53 pm
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    They wanted him to edit 17 weeklies… he said no!

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  • December 8, 2014 at 8:59 pm
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    From what I have seen of content editors they don’t do much editing. Mistakes abound. Can’t beat a proper editor. As for group editors there is another big saving to be made.

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  • December 10, 2014 at 8:05 pm
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    Top man Paul, one of the finest I’ve worked for and an extremely talented page designer who taught me so much.
    Good luck gaffer, I hope I can work for you again soon at some point in the future.
    Keep fighting the fight.

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  • December 11, 2014 at 12:22 pm
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    Paul gave me my first journalism job and even after I quit gave me my job back again. Wishing him a well deserved break. Good luck PW.

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  • December 15, 2014 at 9:25 pm
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    This has been classed as a resignation but it is hard to believe that it is not what the company wanted bearing in mind recent cuts of editors at similar titles…..

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