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26.6.07

News just in from Yorkshire

A friend phoned me today to tell me that the Editor's job at the Craven Herald is up for grabs.
Not sure why except back in the day when I was a full-time journalist I had expressed an opinion that being editor of the Herald must be a fantastic way to see out your retirement in journalism - working on a small provincial, weekly newspaper dedicated to serving the community.
Here's the genuine advertisement from Newsquest:

Description: Heard the phrase "dyed in the wool"? Well the Craven Herald IS the wool: it's been an integral part of the life of the Yorkshire Dales - and the bustling market towns of Skipton and Settle - since 1853.
It is one of only two paid-for weekly newspapers in Britain that still runs classified advertising on its front page and it has an enviable record of growing sales.
It covers a vast area that's steeped in rural tradition but this is no cosy backwater. Craven Herald readers demand to know about everything that moves and they rely on their local paper to provide the information in an honest, straightforward, timely and, above all, accurate manner.
But, to coin a phrase, times they are a-changin'. The Craven Herald has its own busy and popular website, which is part of its armoury in recording and reporting the evolution of modern life in the Dales, and the newspaper needs to constantly develop to meet those challenges.
The new editor will inherit a tough task in marrying the traditions and history of this beautiful but sometimes harsh landscape with the demands of the modern Dales community.
The successful candidate will be a diplomat, capable of understanding and communicating with all members of the Herald's diverse readership on all levels and meeting the needs of farmers, businessmen, villagers and town dwellers alike.
You will be a skilled design sub-editor who will lead from the front heading up the production team at its Bradford base but also getting out and about in the Craven and Dales community.
You will need to demonstrate a proven track record in local newspaper journalism as well as experience of managing a team at at least deputy editor level.
This is a rare opportunity and we're seeking an individual with rare qualities to fill this important post.

You can bet that was written by a Yorkshireman. But would I want the job? Not sure now. I've been out of mainstream journalism now for more than five years plus I am running my own business(es) with many mouths to feed - staff as well as family.
In many ways running a communications agency is not that far removed from running a newspaper - "you do that, you do this, you go and get a picture of him, you write the story, you sub the copy, you write the headlines - ya da da da da."
But I am not sure I could go back - can you ever go back? Anyway I am only in my early 40s - maybe when I am a bit more avuncular I might consider it.
Great newspaper though and I have never received a Response Source from anyone at the Craven Herald.

2 comments:

Lisa said...

This is my local paper and a couple of years ago they ran an April Fool saying that they were going to take the classifieds off the front page - I believed it!

Richard said...

As is the case with Newsquest nowadays, everything is centralised so your plan of mooching around Skipton as you look forward would have been scuppered; you'd have the beancounters in Bradford watching your every move.

This centralisation is quite annoying from a PR point of view as reporters are now unable to walk across the office and have a quick word about a story etc. I regularly send stuff to the Keighley News and I get the feeling from the reporters that once they've sent it then it's anyone's guess as to what happens to it. I'm thinking this is the same with the Ilkley Gazette. They manage to fill the paper with some real crap. Can I say crap, or does that make your blog even more X-rated?