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`Guardian' names its new editor

Alan Rusbridger was last night named editor of the Guardian by the Scott Trust, which controls the newspaper. Currently deputy editor, he succeeds Peter Preston, who becomes editor-in-chief of both the Guardian and the Observer after almost 20 yea rs in the job.

Mr Rusbridger, 40, was the overwhelming favourite. During a week of unprecedented and open debate, the entire staff of journalists was involved in his selection in a process unique in British newspapers.

On Monday, a journalists' chapel (union) meeting quizzed the candidates - who also included Victor Keegan, Alex Brummer and Martin Walker - about their published manifestos for the paper's future.

Yesterday, they voted overwhelmingly for Mr Rusbridger. This was followed by an "electoral college" of managers, trustees, and staff members, and a meeting of the Scott Trustees.