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Newsquest editorial chief quits after 30 years running newspapers

Donald Martin 2One of the longest-serving editorial chiefs in the UK regional press is quitting his role after more than 30 years editing various titles.

Donald Martin, left, has announced he is stepping down as editor-in-chief of Newsquest’s Scottish titles, which include flagship Glasgow daily The Herald.

The move comes weeks after the appointment of a new MD, David Ward, in succession to long-serving predecessor Graeme Morrison, who announced his retirement in April.

It brings to an end one of the most notable regional press careers of recent times which saw Donald edit The Herald, the Sunday Post, the Glasgow Evening Times, the Aberdeen Evening Express and the North West Evening Mail.

Donald announced his decision in a statement issued to staff yesterday afternoon in which he also hinted at a new career move involving helping individuals and businesses manage change.

He wrote: “After more than 30 fantastic years as an editor, including two stints at The Herald, managing two Sunday national newspapers, three regional dailies and numerous weeklies and magazines, the time is right for fresh challenges and opportunities.

“I have achieved more than I could ever have imagined and been fortunate to have worked with so many talented people, including the dynamic management team under Graeme Morrison at Newsquest Scotland.

“The new phase of my adventure really excites me as I bring my skills and experience to work with executives and organisations on making a positive difference as the world goes through a generational transition.

“The difficult challenges we have successfully embraced in media and the leadership skills gained along that journey will allow me to help individuals and businesses thrive under pressure and make the structural and strategic changes required.”

“It has been a privilege and honour to lead a flagship brand such as The Herald and their brilliant journalits and columnists and I wish them every success in the future.”

Donald’s first editorship was at the free weekly the Edinburgh and Lothians Post at the age of 24.

He edited the North West Evening Mail, then owned by the CN Group, for four years before the then Northcliffe Group poached him to become editor of the Evening Express.

After an eight-year stint in Aberdeen, he moved to Newsquest as editor of the Evening Times before being appointed editor-in-chief of The Herald and its then stablemate the Sunday Herald in December 2008.

He left Newsquest in 2010 to join DC Thomson as editor of Dundee’s Sunday Post, but returned to the group in 2016 as editor-in-chief of all its 26 Scottish newspapers and their associated websites.

Donald was president of the Society of Editors in 2009, hosting its annual conference in Glasgow that year.

He is also a past chairman of the Scottish Daily Newspaper Society’s editors committee and a director of the National Council for the Training of Journalists.