BBC Radio Northampton editor appointed

Jess Rudkin Jess Rudkin will start in Northampton in May

Editor of BBC Somerset Jess Rudkin will become BBC Radio Northampton's editor at the end of May.

She replaces Laura Moss who moved from Northampton to become editor of BBC Three Counties.

Rudkin became the editor of BBC Somerset in 2009 at 29-years-old, making her one of the youngest BBC local radio editors.

Apart from a brief stint as a freelance journalist, Rudkin has spent her whole career at BBC Somerset. In 2003 she started as a reporter before becoming the breakfast producer and then news editor.

While in charge at BBC Somerset Rudkin changed all but one presenter, keeping the former Children's BBC presenter Simon Parkin.

"Somerset needed turning out and starting again" she explains.

In three years, Rudkin doubled the listeners of the station. Since being appointed in December 2008 BBC Somerset's weekly reach has doubled from 8 per cent to 16 per cent.

She puts this down to getting closer to the audience.

"We have taken our role out in the community very seriously. We've done 58 outside broadcasts last year, which I think is probably a local radio record."

But she doesn't expect to bring about such an overhaul in BBC Radio Northampton which she says already gets "fantastic share and fantastic reach".

"They are successful in lots of the areas we haven't been able to explore in Somerset. Somerset doesn't have a full schedule, it's the smallest team in local radio, we haven't been able to do big events and partnerships and we don't have the non-news programmes."

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