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Speculation mounts about future of Standard editor

LONDON - Speculation is continuing to mount over the future of Evening Standard editor Veronica Wadley, with several names being linked to her job.

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Wadley, the former deputy editor of sister title the Daily Mail, took over from Max Hastings in January and has since shaken up and revamped the paper, hiring and firing a considerable number of staff without any apparent circulation pay-off.

The latest name to be linked to the editor's chair at the Standard is The Observer editor Roger Alton. He is understood to have been approached about the job originally and news of new talks with Associated Newspapers are being reported.

In her year at the paper, Wadley has overseen an unprecedented number of departures at the paper. Among the most senior to go was managing director Sally de la Bedoyere, who departed after 15 years following rumours that the two fell out. She was replaced by morning freesheet Metro's Mike Anderson.

Wadley axed the Evening Standard's six-year-old weekly listings magazine Hot Tickets and replaced it with Metrolife in an effort to ape the success of Emap's Heat magazine, but the expensive move has so far done little to boost flagging circulation.

There have been almost a dozen high-profile editorial departures including: features editor Bernice Davison; Jeremy Langmead, the editor of the Standard's Life and Style supplement who went to Wallpaper; astrologer Sarah Bartlett; Nicola Jeal, assistant editor (features); deputy City editor Joanne Hart; and reporter Jo Revill.

Other departures have included interviewer and features writer Andrew Billen and media editor Vincent Graff, who left to join The Times, while sports editor Mick Dennis left and is now at the Daily Mirror.

Next on the list rumoured to be going is executive editor Anne McElvoy, who is believed to be going back to The Independent.

On the sales side, Mike Orlov was replaced as advertising sales director by Alan Brydon, the former managing director of Tempus-owned media planning and buying agency CIA.

Two days ago, Brand Republic revealed that Associated had poached former Marks & Spencer marketer Matthew Chambers from Premiership football club Charlton Athletic as its brand controller.

His appointment coincided with six departures from the sales department.

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