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Regional daily business editor bows out after 52-year career

Martyn Torr

A regional daily business editor has penned a series of columns about his life and career to mark his retirement after more than half a century in the industry.

Martyn Torr, left, has left his role at the Oldham Evening Chronicle after 24 years with the paper.

He started his career at the Oldham Press Agency after leaving school and went on to work for the Stalybridge Reporter for 22 years before joining the Chronicle in 1991.

While at the daily paper, Martyn also ran his own PR business, New Image (Public Relations) Ltd, and was heavily involved with Stalybridge Celtic football club, where he remains as club secretary.

He has now retired from the Chronicle after a four-part series about his life, which he wrote as part of his final Martyn Meets pages.

In the fourth of his pieces, he wrote: “I’ve had the best of times in newspapers, no question. The days when the presses rolled and the buildings shook and everyone, and I mean everyone, read a paper.

“Now with all this technology and social media, people can get their news in a myriad of ways.

“Personally I’ll never stop reading newspapers. They have been my life. And it has been a quite fantastic life.”

Martyn wrote how he began as a cub reporter at Oldham Press Agency in the mid 1960s, where he carried out a variety of tasks as an apprentice until losing his job there.

He then secured a role with the Ashton Reporter Group of newspapers, as the High Peak reporter, based in Whaley Bridge.

Martyn spent a year there before he was transferred to the Stalybridge Reporter office, where his love affair with Stalybridge Celtic began.

He covered the club for the Reporter for 22 years, and when he left the paper in 1987, he was asked to continue writing match reports, which he did for another 23 years, until last season.

During his time at the paper, he also worked shifts for some national newspapers in Manchester, including the Daily Mirror and the Express.

In 1987, Martyn became the writer on a new magazine launched by Oldham Council for its business community produced by Good Advertising but the business folded four years later.

Martyn was given a job at the Chronicle in 1991, his third chance of working there after he was unsuccessful with a job in 1964 and later turned down the offer of an interview.

He helped out at first on the Chronicle’s sports desk while setting up his own PR business before the opportunity arose for him to become business editor.

Martyn was initially given the role as a six-week trial because he was doing it part-time in conjunction with running his business – but has remained there ever since.

He added: “I have enjoyed every minute of my time at the Chronicle. I have been allowed by each of the editors – Philip (Hirst), Jim Williams and now Dave (Whaley) – to be my own man, bring my own reporting ideas to the paper and be the paper’s face of the business community.”


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  • May 8, 2015 at 12:44 pm

    How do you square being a business editor with running a PR agency on the side? Perish the thought there may have been a conflict of interest.

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  • May 8, 2015 at 4:25 pm

    Well done Martyn, i still remember you as the Reporter’s voice of sport and Mossley & Saddleworth edition editor. Still driving the team bus for Staly Celtic?

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