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Axe falls again at SGR

PUBLISHED: 20:00 15 May 2002 | UPDATED: 11:55 03 March 2010

THE knives have been out again at SGR as another supremo fell victim to changes at the beleaguered station's Ipswich HQ.

Managing director Mike Stewart has joined the exodus from the company, joining the ranks of popular departed DJ Gareth Evans, who left in February, and programme controller Mark Pryke, made redundant a month later.

By GEORGINA WROE

georgina.wroe@eveningstar.co.uk

THE knives have been out again at SGR as another supremo fell victim to changes at the beleaguered station's Ipswich HQ.

Managing director Mike Stewart has joined the exodus from the company, joining the ranks of popular departed DJ, Gareth Evans, who left in February, and programme controller Mark Pryke, was made redundant a month later.

Mr Stewart, 56, who has worked in local radio since 1976 and at SGR since 1996, said he wouldn't be applying for any other positions within the company as restructuring meant no MD positions were on offer.

He said of his redundancy: "The offer on the table was too good for me to turn down.

"Consolidation is the way the industry is going. I am looking at this as an opportunity. I will miss the people at SGR, it was a great team."

He added: "I'm looking forward to taking some gardening leave and putting my feet up and watching every game of the World Cup. But I have a wealth of experience and am looking forward to the future."

Mr Stewart's radio career has included working for Beacon, Broadland and East Anglia radio where he was made programme director in 1990.

As well as Mike Stewart's redundancy, rumours abound that the newsroom staff is being cut from four to three and that a quarter of the station's offices on the Alpha Business Park in Whitehouse Road, is being re-let.

The news comes despite assurances in February from GWR, which owns the station, that a managerial shake-up would not affect staff at their Ipswich office.

GWR spokeswoman, Jessica Alder, called Mr Stewart's departure "amicable". She said: "We have invited Mr Stewart to apply for other positions within the group."

She also confirmed the Ipswich office would lose one of its four units at the end of the year.

GWR, which owns 32 radio stations across the country is bringing national and regional advertising under one roof in a bid to increase efficiency.

SGR had its roots with Radio Orwell, which went on the air in the Ipswich area in October, 1975.

It started as a genuine community station and retained a firm local identity during the late 1970s and 1980s.

A sister station, Saxon Radio – based in Bury St. Edmunds – started broadcasting in 1982. In 1992 the stations changed their name to SGR.


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