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Former editor moves to new political role after publisher’s cuts

Ralph Blackburn 2022A former editor has taken a new political brief following cutbacks at a regional publisher in which his old newsdesk role was made redundant.

Ralph Blackburn has been unveiled as the new politics editor of National World’s national news website NationalWorld after a restructure in which more than 50 journalists were put at risk of redundancy across the group.

Ralph, pictured, previously edited London World but moved to become head of news at NationalWorld last year.

Previous politics editor Tom Hourigan quit his post just weeks into the job last month, citing restructuring and a change in editorial direction” for his decision, while the site’s launch editor Nick Mitchell has moved to a new group-wide role as head of audience.

The publisher’s cities editor-in-chief Nancy Fielder subsequently added NationalWorld to her portfolio, although the National Union of Journalists has claimed group executive chairman David Montgomery has appointed himself as the “de facto editor” of the site.

Ralph posted on Twitter: “Following a restructure at NationalWorld, I’m excited to be taking on the role of politics editor based in Westminster. Looking forward to getting stuck in as the country gears up for yet another general election.”

Ralph previously worked for Archant, where he was chief reporter at the Ilford Recorder, from 2015 to 2017.

He then moved to work on PA’s robot reporting project RADAR, where he was among a team of reporters who used open government and local authority databases, and story templates, to generate automatic stories about health, crime, employment and other subjects.

From 2019 until his appointment at London World, Ralph served as chief reporter at London-based agency Triangle News Group.

HTFP has approached National World for a comment.