Jewson, who has held the post for the past 17 years, will be replaced by current non-executive director Richard Wyatt who will take up the post on 1 January 2014.

“I have been honoured to serve as both a director and chairman of Archant for the last 31 years,” said Jewson. “During that time I have seen Archant grow from a small newspaper company in East Anglia into a successful community media business operating across the UK.

“I have always intended to retire by the time I reach 70 and this is now a good time to hand over to my successor, Richard Wyatt, to whom I wish all success.”

Adrian Jeakings, chief executive of Archant, said: “Richard has played a major role in the development of Archant. He has been hugely helpful to me since I took on the role of chief executive and I wish him every happiness in his retirement.

“I am delighted that Richard Wyatt has accepted the position of Archant chairman and look forward to working with him in the future.”

Richard Wyatt
Richard Wyatt will become Archant chairman on 1 January 2014

Wyatt, 54, has been a non-executive director of Archant since 2005. He is chairman of Loudwater Investment Partners and media agency the Engine Group and is also a senior advisor of NM Rothschild and a trustee of Aldeburgh Music.

He was formerly a managing director of Schroder Securities and Lazard.

“I am delighted to have been appointed chairman of Archant,” he said. “I would wish to pay the strongest of tributes to Richard Jewson, who has contributed to the success and growth of Archant for more than 30 years.

“He is, and will remain, a source of wise counsel for me, and I wish him well in his retirement.”