Staff at the Newsquest-owned Lancashire Telegraph were told on Friday that long-standing editor Kevin Young, pictured left, had been placed on gardening leave, and would leave the business on 31 July.
The move is believed to have come about as part of an “organisational restructure” in Newsquest’s North West division and followed a meeting between Kevin and regional managing director Nick Fellows on Thursday.
It is understood the Blackburn-based Telegraph’s features editor John Anson is looking after the paper in Kevin’s absence with deputy editor Alan Simpson currently on holiday.
Kevin took up the Telegraph’s editorship in June 2000 following the departure of Peter Butterfield, who himself had been in charge there for the previous 15 years.
He is only the 11th person to hold the role since the newspaper was founded in 1886.
In November seven editorial staff were made redundant from the Telegraph, which led to the axing of its free sister weekly the Burnley Citizen.
A number of subbing jobs were also lost at the title earlier in 2014 as part of Newsquest’s transfer of much of its production operation to a hub in Newport.
Kevin began his career as a reporter at the Luton News and then joined the Coventry Evening Telegraph, where he became industry correspondent before being promoted to sub-editor.
After that he served as page one splash sub at the Express & Star, Wolverhampton, before taking on the deputy editorship of the Bradford Telegraph & Argus.
No-one from Newsquest North West has so far responded to requests for a comment.