Community media company Archant, whose titles include the Eastern Daily Press and the Norwich Evening News, has today announced changes to its Suffolk and Norfolk business units.

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After a review of the way the company produces its newspapers in Norfolk and Suffolk, it is proposing to create one combined editorial production unit in Norwich to serve all its four daily titles and 19 local weekly titles.

The company says it believes this will enable it to be more flexible and efficient in managing its day-to-day editorial resources.

In a statement to staff, Archant said if the proposal goes ahead it will see the majority of Suffolk’s editorial production work moving to Norwich, resulting in 14 production roles in Suffolk being at risk of redundancy.

A small editorial production team will remain based in Ipswich, along with reporters, writers and photographers, meaning there will still be about 50 front-line journalists based in Suffolk.

At the same time, Archant Anglia is changing the way it publishes its daily newspapers by sharing more content between the Ipswich Star and East Anglian Daily Times and the Norwich Evening News and Eastern Daily Press.

This proposal puts a further four editorial roles at risk in Suffolk and six in Norwich. Consultation with those staff at risk of redundancy from these proposals has begun today.

Archant Anglia managing director, Johnny Hustler, said: “Archant Anglia, like many media businesses, continues to face extremely challenging trading situations. It is important we do all we can to reduce the cost of producing our newspapers, while retaining as many front-line reporting staff as possible.

“The future of our business depends on creating compelling local content and delivering that to our audiences through our traditional print and emerging digital products, but at a cost we can afford,” he added. “It is hoped that we can continue to operate professionally and sympathetically during the consultation period.”

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