With Scotland on Sunday acting editor, Tom Little, beaten to the job on a permanent basis by Sunday Times Scotland editor, Les Snowdon, one question doing the rounds at SoS sister title, The Scotsman, is whether its acting editor is going to be also beaten at the final hurdle.
Since the departure of John McGurk as Scotsman editor in May, the paper’s deputy, Ian Stewart, has been ably minding the shop. However, in much the same way that Little lost out after months as acting editor, it may be that Stewart will face a similar fate.
Rumours abound that only two candidates remain in the running and they are former Scotsman deputy, John Mullin, and ex-Herald editor, Mark Douglas-Home.
Owners, Johnston Press, declined to comment, but the rumour has been described by a source within the group as “inaccurate”, while refusing to divulge more. Neither Mullin nor Douglas-Home could be contacted last night.
Mullin, considered an extremely hard-working newspaper man with vision, is currently executive editor (news) at The Independent. He and Indy editor, Simon Kelner, are said to have a very strong relationship.
Since parting company with The Herald, Douglas-Home has completed a ghosted autobiography of Lib-Dem leader, Sir Menzies Campbell, which is reportedly on ice, at the behest of Sir Menzies. He is a former deputy editor of Scotland on Sunday and news editor at The Scotsman.
In Steven Vass’s media section of the Sunday Herald, the names of Carlos Alba and John Penman were touted as possible successors to Snowdon. Alba – who has been ill these last few weeks – is the deputy at Sunday Times Scotland and will be well-known to bosses in London as quiet but having a good news sense. Penman, the paper’s business editor, will be less well-known, by virtue of his fairly recent appointment, but has an impressive CV, including editorship of the now-departed Business am.
Other possible names includes Little himself, who has yet to declare his plans for the future. It is said that staff at Scotland on Sunday were deeply despondent at his not being appointed; well-liked, he had just overseen the relaunching of two key sections of the paper, sport and Spectrum magazine.