Hutton heads for observer

The Observer editor Andrew Jaspan has left the paper after only 13 months and has been replaced by Will Hutton, the assistant editor of sister paper the Guardian.

Hutton brings with him the Guardian’s home news editor Paul Webster as

deputy editor. Meanwhile, Guardian and Observer editor-in-chief Peter

Preston, who pushed for Jaspan’s appointment, moves into the hands-off

position of non-executive board director.

Alan Rusbridger, who replaced Preston as Guardian editor in 1995 when

Preston became editor-in-chief, becomes executive editor over both

titles and remains editor of the Guardian.

Hutton is the third person to edit the Observer since it was bought by

the Guardian Media Group in May 1993. Jaspan, a former editor of the

Scotsman and Scotland on Sunday, replaced Jonathan Fenby, who was

previously deputy editor on the Guardian.

The changes come amid a downward spiral in sales and the imminent

arrival of Sunday broadsheet competitor -Tom Rubython’s Sunday Business

- this month.

A spokeswoman for the paper said it was too early to comment on what

changes would be made to the Observer but it is understood that the

Scott Trust, owner of the Guardian Media Group, is anxious for stronger


Hutton joined the Guardian in 1990 as economics editor following ten

years at the BBC as a producer and correspondent for programmes

including Newsnight, the Money Programme and Financial World Tonight. He

was named ‘political journalist of the year’ by Granada’s ‘What the

Papers Say Awards’ in 1993 and his book The State We’re In has stayed

high on best seller lists since it was published last year.

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