The editor-in-chief of The Herald, and its sister titles, the Sunday Herald and Evening Times, is leaving to become the editor of the Sunday Post.
The shock news, which is understood to have been delivered even to senior managers only this morning, sees Martin – who is the current president of the UK Society of Editors – leaving after just over a year in post as Herald & Times editor-in-chief. He had previously been editor of the Evening Times.
In a memo appearing on The Herald staff intranet, Martin said he was joining the Sunday Post to 'follow in the footsteps' of his grandfather, Jack Campbell, a former Sunday newspaper editor. He succeeds David Pollington, who retired at the end of last year.
It quotes Martin, saying: “The Sunday Post is a great family newspaper with a proud history and I look forward to helping the newspaper, staff and group deliver an ambitious and exciting future.
“I would not be in the position to have been offered the role without the tremendous career development and confidence senior management had in me during my four years at the Herald & Times Group, firstly editing The Evening Times and latterly The Herald as editor-in-chief.
“I will always be grateful for the opportunities I have been given and will be sad to leave behind such a talented team.”
Says David Thomson, joint managing director of the Sunday Post publishers, DC Thomson: “We had a very high calibre of candidate for this post and we’re confident we have chosen the best person to carry The Sunday Post forward and face the many challenges the industry is throwing at us. Donald brings with him a wealth of experience as an editor.”
Martin's first editorship was at the free, weekly Edinburgh and Lothians Post, at the age of 24. He was editor of the Aberdeen Evening Express for eight years and before that editor of the North West Evening Mail in Cumbria for four years. He has also worked at the Cambridge Evening News as deputy editor.
As well as being the president of the UK Society of Editors, he is chair of the Scottish Newspaper Society and a director of the National Council for the Training of Journalists.
Martin's tenure as Herald editor-in-chief coincided with a major staff re-organisation across all three of the Herald & Times' titles, including an invitation that all staff apply for around 40 fewer posts. The upset that will have been caused by that is probably the reason why news of his departure is said to have been met with shouts of delight by some in the building.