Dr. Martin Hamer
School of Arts and Media
Senior Lecturer in Journalism
I have been a journalist since 1983, beginning my career as a trainee reporter in Salford just around the corner from MediaCityUK, where I am now based.
My first newspaper was the Stretford and Urmston Journal, but that closed within three months of me arriving – don’t think there was a connection – and I was moved to the Swinton Journal under the same series.
Since then, I have worked for national, regional and local newspapers, including the Daily Express and the now-defunct Today newspaper (again, hopefully nothing to do with me).
It was during a five-year stint in London in the 1980s that I enjoyed one of my journalism career highlights… working with England’s World Cup-winning captain Bobby Moore – a real gentleman as well as a great footballer.
In 1989, I joined the Press Association, which was still based in those days on Fleet Street - once home to the UK national newspaper industry.
In total, I was with PA for 12 years, working for the UK’s national news agency in London, Leeds and Howden (that’s near Hull for those of you who haven’t heard of it).
I was PA’s first northern sports correspondent, covering football and boxing among other sports, and also its first full-time rugby league reporter.
While at PA, I studied part-time and passed a Masters degree in Journalism at Liverpool John Moores University.
It was after leaving PA - in 2001 - that I first moved into academia full-time, setting up and leading an MA in Digital Journalism at the University of Sheffield.
I passed a second Masters, in E-Learning, while at Sheffield where I co-authored Key Concepts in Journalism Studies (Franklin et al, Sage, 2005).
Later, I wrote a chapter called Trading on Trust in Local Journalism and Local Media: Making the Local News (ed by Franklin, Routledge, 2006).
I missed working as a journalist (and found the travelling from Rochdale to Sheffield too demanding, and occasionally very dangerous – try driving over the Snake Pass in the middle of winter), so I returned to the industry and had my first spell with the BBC as an online news reporter.
I then landed what I consider to be the best job I have ever had (before the University of Salford of course)… as digital editor of the Lancashire Evening Post in Preston.
It was there I helped to lead Johnston Press’s group-wide Newsroom of the Future, which became a blueprint for every other JP newspaper. I was appointed a JP digital champion and helped to roll out new websites across the group.
The opportunity to return to the BBC, this time working in sport and at MediaCityUK, resulted in me joining the Interactive operation when it moved up from London in 2011.
I worked as a senior broadcast journalist for the BBC Sport website, where my roles included chief sub, front page editor, trainer and style guide guru until leaving there in September 2014 to return to academia - and join Salford.
I organise industry placements at Salford and am also the NCTJ co-ordinator. I specialise in sports journalism but teach news journalism as well.
Areas of research
Journalism, Newsrooms, Convergence, Newspapers, Social Media
- News Journalism
- Sports Journalism
- Print Journalism
- Web journalism
- Passed all NCTJ qualifications first time to become a fully qualified journalist (1982-1985)
- MA in Journalism, Liverpool John Moores University (1998-2000)
- MEd in E-Learning, University of Sheffield (2003-2005)
- PhD, University of Salford (2015-2019)