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Deputy editor quits title after 16 years to join rival publisher

A journalist who started at her local paper as a 14-year-old work experience student before rising to become deputy editor is leaving to join a rival publisher.

Katie Clark has announced her departure as deputy editor of the Bournemouth Daily Echo, having been officially employed by the Newsquest title since 2007.

She is joining National World as an SEO content editor, teaming up with her former colleague Katie Brooks, who is group live editor at the publisher.

Katie announced the move in a Twitter thread, saying it had been a “very hard decision.”

The Bournemouth Echo's office

The Bournemouth Echo’s office

Wrote Katie: “Having first started at the Echo on work experience aged 14, and then doing Saturdays in a district office, before officially being employed in 2007, it’s been a huge part of my life.

“I met my husband here, best friends, the most incredible newsroom colleagues, and have been lucky to work with some amazingly talented people.

“It’s been a very hard decision to leave. Especially when you care deeply about the people you work with daily. The staff in the Echo newsroom are brilliant. They are talented and hard working, and I thank them for their dedication.

“I’ve said it before, but we’re not a big newsroom. From when I started to now, the difference in local news is unrecognisable. Some good changes, some not so good. What this tiny team produces daily is miraculous. And we’re punching above our weight here. And always have.

“I care deeply about the job of a local journalist and what we do. The mix of holding to account, open justice, helping communities, and covering events and breaking news has meant I’ve never been bored once.

“Without strong local journalism, councils don’t get scrutinised, criminals don’t get named, and authorities are not held to account. That’s what I care about. Not meaningless clicks. Shining a light where people don’t want it.”

“I will desperately miss doing this. But for a variety of reasons, it is time for a new challenge and to regain some sense of a normal life again.

“I am very excited to join @NationalWorld in February as an SEO content editor in my fabulous former colleague’s team @katielbrooks_. Will be so nice to be fully digital once more and contribute to the great work you are doing.”

Katie Brooks previously worked for Newsquest as SEO and affiliates lead before joining National World last year.

She now runs a team focused on live trends and search engine optimisation content across the group’s regional titles.