Five journalism jobs including an editor role are set to be made redundant as part of cutbacks affecting three sister dailies.
Proposals include merging the editorships of Hampshire Living and Dorset Living magazines, which are based in Bournemouth, into a single group magazine writer role, while two print content manager posts also based at the Bournemouth Echo are set to be combined into a single position.
Two what’s on writer roles, based in Bournemouth and the Dorset Echo’s office in Weymouth, will be merged under the plans, while a Bournemouth-based head of images role has also been placed at risk of redundancy.
The proposals, which follow the loss of around 10 journalism roles in Southampton and Bournemouth earlier this year due to the creation of a new editorial hub covering both titles, were set out in an email to staff which has been seen by HTFP.
In it, the company said that the proposed scrapping of the head of images post was due to “increased use of contributed images and photographs taken by reporters”, while the merger of the print content manager posts was due to an “increasing use of the write to shape system by reporters”.
Under the proposals, Bill Browne, currently publisher and editor-in-chief of the Basingstoke Gazette, Salisbury Journal and Andover Advertiser, will take on the editorial management of the Romsey Advertiser and Hampshire Chronicle from Southern Daily Echo boss Gordon Sutter.
This will entail the loss of a sports reporter role across the daily titles, with responsibility for sport coverage on the Advertiser and Chronicle to be covered from within the five weekly titles’ existing resources.
A Newsquest spokesman said: “The environment for news publishers remains very challenging, given in particular the very substantial loss of revenue to other digital advertising platforms.
“At Newsquest we are focused on ensuring that news brands have a sustainable future.
“We continue to restructure how we operate to ensure we work as efficiently as possible across the business.
“Whilst these potential redundancies are regrettable, it means we can continue to invest in quality journalism for many years to come.”
Last week HTFP revealed compulsory redundancies have been threatened at Newsquest’s Glasgow-based titles The Herald and The Herald on Sunday unless “a number” of journalists volunteered to leave the business.
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