A new era for the Birmingham Post

This was originally published on my Birmingham Post blog on October 20, 2009
In three weeks' time, the last daily edition of the printed version of the Birmingham Post will roll off our presses in Erdington, marking the end of a publishing tradition that stretches back more than 150 years.
But it also marks a rebirth, as the Post starts a new chapter in its evolution as a multimedia brand and its new life as a must-read weekly title.

Never fewer than 100 pages in total - and often much bigger - all the paper's key strengths will be concentrated in one value-for-money read that you will want to keep in the office or around the house all week.
Alongside the relaunch of the print title, a brand new version of the Post will be delivered by email directly to your inbox every morning for you to scan at your screen, on your phone, your PDA - or even to print off and read in the old-fashioned way.
Together, the print and digital formats will deliver an unrivalled service. The stresses of the current economic downturn may well have hastened our move to become a genuinely multi-media title, but the result will be a paper that's better placed than almost any other to meet the challenges of the digital age by fusing innovation with its traditional values.
I'm sure existing readers will find much to like in the new Birmingham Post - and I'm also confident that the weekly title will have a much broader appeal across more of the whole West Midlands region than the current daily version.
Our already well-regarded online services will become an even more integral part of what we do, and by breaking news online every day of the week, there'll be no less Post coverage of the business and political stories that matter in the West Midlands.
The new paper, published every Thursday morning, will take broader and a deeper look at the major issues in the region.
That week-long perspective gives us an opportunity to really get under the skin of the decisions, trends and challenges that have the most impact. We can devote both more
time and more space to the reportage of Post staff - as well as to the comments and insights of the people involved, whether they are politicians, business people, academics or readers themselves.
In August, I shared with you the economic challenges faced by Trinity Mirror Midlands, the publisher of the Post and its stablemates the Birmingham Mail and the Sunday Mercury.
By going weekly, the Post can make its contribution to the changes the business has to make to secure its own long term future. Moreover, the change is a positive response to the challenges, and gives the Post a whole new business model that strengthens its profitability and future potential.
Unfortunately, all of this means that some of the Post's daily editorial team will lose their jobs, although we hope that as many as possible can be achieved through voluntary redundancy.
Over the past two months, everyone in the newsroom has been undergoing consultation about the future of the titles - and of course the future of their own roles.
As a member of the editorial team, I was also under consultation, and I thought it was very important that I should make a clear decision whether to stay and see the changes through - or to go and give the paper a fresh start under a new editor.
I believe that to stay I would have to commit to be editor for a considerable period into the future, but that after almost four years in the job already, the time is right for a new pair of hands to pick up the reins.
I am supremely pleased and proud of what has been achieved at the Post over
the past four years, and more than certain that its successes and reputation will continue to grow under a new editor.
I'm delighted that I can continue to work with an excellent team over the next few weeks as the changes to the Post and the business bed in, and I look forward to seeing his first weekly edition roll off the presses on November 12.

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