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East Anglian Daily Times editor Terry Hunt set to retire at end of September

PUBLISHED: 12:00 17 August 2017 | UPDATED: 12:04 17 August 2017

EADT editor Terry Hunt at the paper's Business Awards. Picture: ARCHANT

EADT editor Terry Hunt at the paper's Business Awards. Picture: ARCHANT

The long-serving editor of the East Anglian Daily Times has announced his decision to retire at the end of September.

Pictured at the Suffolk Show 2015, show president Terry Hunt with wife Jane. Picture: ARCHANTPictured at the Suffolk Show 2015, show president Terry Hunt with wife Jane. Picture: ARCHANT

Terry Hunt, who has held the position for the past 21 years, joined Eastern Counties Newspapers (now Archant) as a trainee reporter in 1979, and is the longest-serving regional daily newspaper editor in the country.

He has also edited the Ipswich Star for a total of six years in two spells.

Jeff Henry, Archant’s chief executive, said that under Terry’s editorship, the EADT had enhanced its reputation as a trusted, campaigning newspaper which fights for local communities. It has also fully embraced the digital age, with a website which attracts huge and fast-growing audiences.

In the last two decades, EADT readers have raised millions of pounds for good causes. This includes £3million made in less than a year to help build the new Treehouse children’s hospice in Ipswich, opened by the Duchess of Cambridge in 2011.

The Duchess of Cambridge opens The EACH Treehouse Hospice, Ipswich. Picture: ARCHANTThe Duchess of Cambridge opens The EACH Treehouse Hospice, Ipswich. Picture: ARCHANT

The EADT and its readers have also raised record-breaking amounts of money to help the most vulnerable members of society to keep safe and warm with the annual Surviving Winter campaign.

During Terry’s time as editor, the EADT has launched many campaigns aimed at improving life for the communities of Suffolk and north Essex. These have included fighting for much-needed road and rail improvements, battling for faster broadband in rural areas, and working with partners to improve educational standards in Suffolk.

The EADT’s Maths Challenge, which helped thousands of school pupils to improve their maths, won a world-wide award from the International News Media Association, presented in New York, in 2013.

In 2011, Terry was made an Honorary Fellow of the University of Suffolk and in 2015 was President of the Suffolk Agricultural Association, which organises the Suffolk Show.

Children from Moulton Primary School took part in the hugely successful EADT Maths Challenge. Picture: ARCHANTChildren from Moulton Primary School took part in the hugely successful EADT Maths Challenge. Picture: ARCHANT

Terry said: “It’s been a huge privilege to do this job. I’m a Suffolk boy, and to be the editor of the newspaper which serves my home county, and the places I care about most, has been a great honour. I’m only the eighth editor of the EADT in 143 years, so I count myself extremely fortunate to have had this opportunity.

“It’s the job of a good local newspaper to use its influence to bring about positive change in its patch. I hope under my editorship the EADT has fulfilled that role, and has also accurately reflected the way life is in Suffolk and Essex.

“It’s been exciting, unpredictable and often challenging. But not once in the last 21 years has a single day dragged!

“I now look forward to a new phase of my life. I’m pleased to say I will maintain a relationship with Archant, writing columns for the EADT and EADT Suffolk Magazine. I also plan to work with a number of local organisations which are important to me.

“Hopefully there will also be more opportunities for walking, cycling, watching Ipswich Town, and perfecting my own unique brand of comedy golf!’’

“My thanks to the many, many people – colleagues and those in the community – who have been so supportive and helped me through the years.’’

Matt Kelly, Archant’s chief content officer, said: “Terry is an editor of huge talent and a man who stands synonymous with the great newspaper that he has edited for so many years.

“He also happens to be a wonderful leader who has built an exceptional team.

“Suffolk and Archant will miss him greatly, although we are delighted he will continue to write for us about his beloved Ipswich Town Football Club.

“Whoever follows in the editor’s chair at the East Anglian Daily Times will inherit a great legacy.”

Jeff Henry, Archant chief executive, said: “Terry is a great campaigning editor and an inspirational mentor.

“Like the very best editors, he combines calm authority and impeccable decision-making with real passion for his patch, for his paper, and for his staff.

“An outstanding print journalist, he has adapted capably to changes in our industry and is currently presiding over record growth for the EADT’s digital brands.

“It’s a happy coincidence that Terry is stepping down just the football team he loves, Ipswich Town, are enjoying their best start to a season in years. We wish him many happy years of following them at Portman Road – and, of course, he will continue to write about the club for the EADT.”

“A huge thank from all at Archant for his incredible contribution over so many years”

Recruitment for only the ninth EADT editor in 143 years starts immediately. In the interim period, Brad Jones, Ipswich Star editor, will expand his role to take day to day responsibility for the EADT, as Acting EADT editor. He will be supported by Steve Anglesey, content director for East Anglia.

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