DfT revamps comms team after exits

The Department for Transport has rejigged its comms team.

Head of speechwriting Helen Mason has become acting head of news – a role that has assumed the remit of the transport secretary’s personal press aide.

Meanwhile, chief press officer George O’Neill has been installed as deputy head of news.

The DfT is seeking O’Neill’s replacement.

The revamp follows a number of departures from the DfT comms team. Chief press officer for road and local transport Scot Marchbank recently joined the Home Office as assistant director of news.

His rep­lacement is being recruited for, and will report to Mason.

Last year, then director of comms Julia Simpson left for Downing Street (PRWeek, 13 October 2006).

Former DfT head of news Marcus DeVille joined Serco as director of comms for nuclear decommissioning at the end of last year.

Martin Sheehan, former personal press secretary to the transport secretary, joined the Department for Trade and Industry last June (PRWeek, 15 June 2006).

Douglas Alexander is the Transport Secretary.

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