MEN Media to move to Oldham 'by September'

Plans to relocate the Manchester Evening News and its 21 sister papers out of the centre of Manchest

Trinity Mirror has confirmed plans to relocate operations of MEN Media, publisher of the Manchester Evening News, to Oldham by late September.

Proposals to move the Evening News and its 21 sister weekly papers from their current location in the centre of Manchester were outlined as part of Trinity's £44.8 million deal to acquire the titles earlier this year.

Despite shifting the bulk of staff to Oldham, MEN will retain an office in the centre of Manchester which will be the permanent base for its city distribution management.

The new city centre office, which will be opened to coincide with the move to Oldham, will also have a front counter and "hot desks" for journalists and advertising staff.

The remaining commercial and editorial operations will move to Trinity Mirror's premises in the Chadderton area of Oldham, where it already prints all MEN newspapers.

The Oldham site is roughly ten miles from MEN Media's current headquarters in the centre of Manchester (click here to view the plans: Plans of MEN Media's new Oldham headquarters).

A spokesman for Trinity Mirror told Press Gazette the company considered a number of other sites but said Oldham "was the one which best suited our needs".

According to a planning application submitted to Oldham Council, MEN Media will move into three floors of a disused building on the site following renovations.

The application details how renovations firm Harrow Green Interiors is currently engaged in refitting the interior of the building, repairs are also being made to its roof.

The renovations will also see the addition of 60 car parking spaces, taking the total number to 80, ten new motorcycle bays and 30 spaces for bicycles.

The proposal details how the new building will be equipped for 450 employees including 20 part-time staff.

Press Gazette understands staff at the Manchester Evening News and its sister weeklies have been given assurances that all employees will transfer into the new headquarters.

The move comes little over a year after MEN Media's former owner, Guardian Media Group, closed the district offices of all its weekly papers and relocated staff to its current Scott Place city centre home.

Trinity Mirror bought GMG Regional Media, which includes MEN Media, from GMG earlier this year for £7.4m cash and the release of a print contract valued at £37.4 million.

At the time of the deal, Trinity Mirror said it only had a six-month license for the occupation of Scott Place and was looking at relocating to a new site.

Oliver Luft is a writer for Press Gazette.