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Editor switches to new role in fresh Johnston Press shake-up

Nicola AdamThe editor of two weeklies is leaving her role to take charge of five sister titles as part of the latest reorganisation by Johnston Press.

Nicola Adam, left,currently group editor of the Lancaster Guardian and Morecambe Visitor, is to relocate south of her current patches to assume the same role at a quintet of other JP-owned weeklies in Lancashire.

As part of her new role, she will become deputy editor of the Lancashire Evening Post under Gillian Parkinson, who is now also responsible for Blackpool daily The Gazette.

Chris Daggett, group editor at East Lancashire Newspapers, will take on the Guardian and Visitor in addition to his present duties.

Nicola’s new titles include the Chorley and Leyland Guardian, which she edited for a brief period in spring 2012, before taking up her current position.

Her portfolio will also include the Garstang Courier, Longridge News, Lytham St Annes Express and Fleetwood Weekly News, which had been under the responsibility of Jon Rhodes, editor of The Gazette until he left the company last month.

Nicola previously served as news editor of the LEP, and was chief reporter in the Preston-based daily’s Lancaster office prior to that.

She will leave her current role, which she has held for three years, at the end of this week.

In a piece announcing her departure, Nicola wrote: “It has been an honour and privilege to work in this absolutely beautiful area which has so much to offer – you are all very lucky to live and work in a place so blessed with natural and historical assets.

“There are some fantastic, dedicated and caring people in Morecambe and Lancaster. I have been staggered by the outpourings of support for those in need and the culture of common goals.

“As we have morphed into our constantly improving multi-media operation, you have supported us, got involved and increasingly had a say in the way we report the news.

“I have to say a big thank you to my small but perfectly formed editorial team who have produced some fantastic work over the last three years and adapted to working as multi-media journalists, producing fantastic content and continuing to be passionate about the area and its people.”

24 comments

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  • June 15, 2015 at 7:38 am
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    Wow, superb vocabulary here – “honour”, “morphed”, “staggered”, “outpourings”, etc – laced with a healthy complement of “fantastics”. Five titles too. Fantastic!

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  • June 15, 2015 at 9:56 am
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    I do wish young reporters would understand there is a difference in meaning between “fresh” and “new.” There is nothing fresh about this.

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  • June 15, 2015 at 10:14 am
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    Taking charge of five sister titles. Clever girl. Something we are getting used to reading on HTFP. Maybe she can ensure all the copy is checked properly including UGC , re-written where needed and the grammar is perfect. Thought not.

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  • June 15, 2015 at 11:09 am
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    have to agree with Dick Minim. Fantastic work, fantastic content fantastic people. Obviously just the sort of fantastic writer you need to teach fantastic young hacks. All the same, I wish her well especially working for such a fantastic company.

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  • June 15, 2015 at 11:22 am
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    If I was a journalist on any of these titles and aged under 40 I would seriously consider retraining as a joiner, plumber/heating engineer, electrician, or some similar trade. You are independent, can build up your own business, and you don’t have to swallow shedloads of kidology.
    You might even be able to emigrate to Australia or Canada…something most journalists are unable to do in the UK.

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  • June 15, 2015 at 11:40 am
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    Anyone can comment on some of the management decisions we see regularly on HTFP, but what happened to just wishing a fellow journalist well in their new job – and perhaps making the best of it for themselves, their colleagues and the readers?

    I don’t know you Nicola but I wish you good luck.

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  • June 15, 2015 at 12:09 pm
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    Clearly all this is ‘fantastic’ but not necessarily ‘exciting’.

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  • June 15, 2015 at 1:03 pm
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    Her ‘small but perfectly formed’ team certainly think it’s ‘fantastic’ she’s going.
    Only joking Nic, we all love you really.

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  • June 15, 2015 at 1:12 pm
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    Okinell57 makes a valid point on the precise meaning of technical journalistic terms here. “Exciting” is an imminent venture to the Job Centre, while “fantastic” is having between three and eight papers to edit, prior to being admitted to a clinic for stress. Anything beyond that is “stupendous”.

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  • June 15, 2015 at 1:17 pm
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    Dear confused…
    Of course we wish Nicola well, it goes without saying. But at the same time we need to face up to the serious contraction that is going on in regional newspapers. All these titles once had their own individual styles before the dead hand of corporate management turned them into clones.
    Roll on journalism start-ups, micro newspapers or whatever.
    Corporate production methods belong in a car factory using robots.
    Long live the workers!

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  • June 15, 2015 at 1:20 pm
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    Where do ‘awesome’ and ‘amazin’ ‘ come into it?

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  • June 15, 2015 at 3:15 pm
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    It’s sad to read many comments slagging off a person who is doing well in an industry that is struggling. Years of overspending, many newspapers having had overstaffed newsrooms with over inflated salaries, reliance on revenue streams that now no longer exist have all contributed to the place we are now stuck. The industry always paid journalists and production staff well, but paid sales staff meagre salaries. So the lack of investment in talented, and well motivated sales teams has come to bite us. A quote I heard was ‘get the ads in and the rest will be taken care of’. True but unfortunately sales departments were considered by many to be to be inferior to editorial and production , when they should have lauded for keeping the financial wheels. Present day managers get slaughtered on htfp, but they are trying to clear up the mess that other people created.

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  • June 15, 2015 at 4:31 pm
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    Dear Oh Not Again…where did all these well-paid newsrooms come from?
    Your premise that the decline of the newspaper industry is purely down to lack of investment in sales staff is a load of bunkum.
    Social media, 24-hour news, the internet, smart phones and culling edirtorial staff with resultant lack of news all combined to toll the bell of doom.
    And I don’t know where you worked but where I did the editorial and sales staff worked together with a common aim to sell the paper.

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  • June 15, 2015 at 5:41 pm
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    Comments about writing ability are irrelevant. Get used to it. Nobody cares about that. Just ability to shovel loads of pages towards the printers at minimal cost and make sure plenty of drivel (sorry fantastic breaking news) on website. I am sure this young lady is perfectly qualified for that job, and good luck to her in her career.

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  • June 15, 2015 at 8:27 pm
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    Whenever I read this type of gushing nonsense, I think of the two yes men – “great” and “Super” in Reggie Perrin. You can just imagine Ashley Highfield declaring “I didn’t get where I am today without cutting another big swathe of editorial jobs!”

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  • June 15, 2015 at 10:53 pm
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    Dick Minim, you should be admitted to a clinic for stress, you’re never off this site with your doom and gloom comments. Surely, you’ve more important things in your life than a full time monitor of HTFP.

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  • June 15, 2015 at 11:00 pm
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    Nicola, by the standards of today, is obviously nothing but a lazy so-and-so.
    My editor edits at least ten papers, double the 5 she is in charge of.
    Of course, the fact that my editor is in a town an hour’s drive away from here, he knows little about the town I write about and the events and issues of the town and its people, is beside the point.
    We know that the way forward, the Newsroom of the Future, is for papers to lose their local links, the connection with the people, our gap in the market, out raison d’etre.
    I see it in my paper where Newsroom of the Future means the sports pages are dealt with many miles away by sports journalists who know nothing about the town my paper once served so well, they care less about it too since they are so unlikely to meet the sportspeople that they have written so badly about or forgotten to include.
    With entertainment its even worse, a mere county or two away and don’t get me started on the division between community news and news.
    To think some guy over 120 miles away can decide what press release is news or community is bizarre to say the least. Does he understand what is news in my small town compared to the large town he is based in?
    No wonder we increasingly get flack from people wondering why their story is not in.
    The irony of it is, as JP tries to rely ever more on UGC, it is the complicated structures of NOTF that means such sourced copy is going astray.
    There is no longer the local person who has his finger on the pulse, who knows everything happening in his patch, etc, etc, and can tell someone over the phone when their piece will go in.
    Of course, as a news reporter, expect the flack from some community minded person or sports club leader when you nip into Tesco or attend a council meeting because of some failing on how the communities team or editor operated, as happened to me the other night.
    Oh, how it was so much simpler and easier in pre-NOTF days.
    Of course, some of us, myself included, may hark back to the days when editors edited a publication one at a time, as I did in my editing days.
    We knew what was going on, we understood our communities, our readers and we had those local links. My local knowledge was amplified by often writing much of the copy myself, being hands on with my reporting team.
    What folly it would have been to create some editorial division between news and communities.
    And sometimes a hard faces news reporter enjoyed the variety of some community-minded bit of fluff.
    The reader appreciated it too, when you could add a bit of variety on a page with some happy smiling kids pictured next to some council or planning story.
    You don’t get that now with news pages and community pages, which makes it that bit harder filling the paper when you lose flexibility.
    But Johnson Press and its almighty leaders know best don’t they?
    Ashley is a winner and we will see this in the next round of circulation figures, which JP are ever so keen to have audited and published.
    What, you mean they left ABC as they started rolling out NOTF.
    What an interesting coincidence.
    How can we tell what works?
    Well, on my paper, it was local links, hyperlocal, good , quality old-fashioned journalism which was lapped up by our elderly readers who dominate our county which maintained our readership.
    Sadly, the stresses and complications of NOTF are pushing out the surviving staff, keen to depart with their integrity and health still in tact, and calamity and disaster will follow.
    But back to the young lassie in question.
    Good luck, love.
    You will certainly need it.
    As will many of us all as we seek greener pastures elsewhere.

    .

    .

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  • June 16, 2015 at 2:10 am
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    We all know that the advent of the internet has made a huge difference and subsequent damage to our industry.However, it didn’t have to be. Because from the start of the digital revolution many, including journalists and management,chose to ignore the question of how to money out of this. Journalists were happy to find a huge new audience for their stories and management didn’t want to be seen to be Neanderthals and went along with this ‘new thing’ . The only sector to question this new development was the commercial side of the business. They were conscious of the need to monetise this new development but their voice was silenced by the editors of the day who held greater sway than most senior sales executives. The ‘suits’ were right. You can’t give away our core product for free and then expect people to buy it. So we are where we are today, because of a serious lack of vision from many in our industry, including journalists. Plenty of more readers,but a huge downturn in advertising revenue, and advertising revenue is what pays salaries and keeps people in jobs.We reap what we sow.

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  • June 16, 2015 at 7:43 am
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    I don’t think one or two of the above comments are called for. It’s one thing to attack industry decisions, and I agree that moving from individual title editors to larger group editors is a terrible mistake, but let’s not turn that into personal attacks on a fellow journalist…

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  • June 16, 2015 at 9:06 am
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    Colin Campbell, Preston: I have been admitted to a clinic for stress and monitoring HTFP has been recommended by the specialists as part of my recovery plan, so it is all I have left to do in life. NB: “full-time” should be hyphenated in the way you use it as it’s adjectival, of course. Anyway, hyphens aside, what are your views on the issues being debated here, Colin?

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  • June 16, 2015 at 10:17 am
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    Newspapers thrive on doom and gloom. Why shouldn’t Dick Minim be allowed his share?

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