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Restructure prompts editor’s departure after 23 years

Hayley SmithAn editor has left a regional publisher after almost a quarter of a century of service following a restructure.

Hayley Smith has departed Newsquest, where she served as its group editor for Cheshire and Merseyside.

Hayley, pictured, began her career with the publisher on the Northwich Guardian in 1999 and had edited the Warrington Guardian since 2014.

Richard Duggan, who has been Newsquest’s regional editor for Lancashire & Greater Manchester since joining the company from Reach plc in 2021, has now been given an expanded role overseeing Merseyside and Cheshire.

Posting on Twitter, Richard said: “Delighted to announce I’ve taken on an expanded role at Newsquest, Regional Editor North West, which means I’ll now oversee the brilliant titles in Merseyside and Cheshire in addition to the ones in Lancashire and Greater Manchester.

“2023, let’s be having you.”

Meanwhile Hayley had updated her own Twitter feed to describe herself as the “former editor of Warrington Guardian & group editor for Newsquest Cheshire/Merseyside.”

She has declined to comment further at this stage.

After starting out as a trainee reporter in Northwich 23 years ago, Hayley worked in a variety of roles, including chief reporter, sub-editor and features editor, as well as deputy editor for both the Mid Cheshire and Warrington Guardians.

She has also been Warrington’s multimedia editor as well as editor of the Runcorn & Widnes World and Leigh Journal.

The move is the second senior editorial change to take place at Newsquest in the North-West of England so far this year.

In Cumbria, Vanessa Sims announced her departure as regional editor on New Year’s Day and has since been replaced in that role by Joy Yates.

HTFP has approached Newsquest for a comment on Hayley’s departure,