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Lyra McKee honoured at Regional Press Awards 

Posted on: May 17, 2019 by Mariella Brown

Murdered journalist Lyra McKee was honoured posthumously at today’s Regional Press Awards where the industry came together to recognise excellence in journalism.

The Belfast Telegraph and Glasgow’s Sunday Herald were among publications named as papers of the year for their work during 2018.

In other categories, awards recognised the innovation and vitality shown in the regional and local news sector, in particular in the digital field where the Manchester Evening News was awarded Best Web Site of the Year.

Lyra McKee’s mother Joan McKee and sister Nichola Corner attended the awards lunch in the heart of London to accept the Journalists’ Charity Award on her behalf. The award, is in the gift of the charity, recognises a journalist or organisation who has made a significant contribution to the industry. Lyra was shot and killed while reporting on rioting in Derry/Londonderry a month ago aged just 29.

Society of Editors executive director Ian Murray said the award for Lyra recognised her achievements during her short career, but also highlighted the risks that journalists even at local level take in bringing news to their communities.

“The awards this year were never more needed to recognise the vital and on-going role of the regional and local press,” commented Murray.

“They coincide with the launch of the Journalism Matters Campaign, launched by the News Media Association, and underscore the message there that communities would be immeasurably poorer but for the work carried out by their local newspapers and associated websites.

“From covering local democracy to ensuring open justice the length and breadth of the United Kingdom, the local media is alive and playing a vital role, and these awards prove what good shape the industry is in.”

The Society of Editors, supported by Camelot since 2001, organises the awards on behalf of the industry. The awards are made possible by headline sponsors Facebook and United Utilities. Other sponsors include Cision, Google, Foot Anstey, HoldtheFrontPage, the News Media Association, Press Association, Asda, Penny Appeal and No1 Lounges.

A gallery of winners can be found on our website and updates from the event via our Twitter page @EditorsUK.

Anyone seeking further comment should call 01223 304080 or contact Executive Director Ian Murray at ian.murray@societyoeditors.org

The full list of the recipients appears below:

Journalists’ Charity Award Sponsored by Cision

Recipient:  Lyra McKee

YOUNG JOURNALIST OF THE YEAR – Sponsored by HoldtheFrontPage

Winner: 

Aamir Mohammed, WalesOnline 

“With coverage of some big contemporary issues, from life in the underbelly of Cardiff’s drug scene, to the dark web. Judges were particularly impressed by the extraordinary story of a Welsh girl abducted as a baby to war-torn Yemen. The winner of Young Journalist of the Year is Aamir Mohammed of WalesOnline.”

Highly Commended:

Estel Farell-Roig, WalesOnline

Katie Timms, Plymouth Live

“We have two highly commended entries this year. Both portfolios were informative, well thought out and shined a light on major issues facing today’s society. Well done to Estel Farell-Roig, WalesOnline and Katie Timms, Plymouth Live.”

BUSINESS AND FINANCE JOURNALIST OF THE YEAR – Sponsored by Foot Anstey

Winner:

Alistair Houghton, Liverpool Echo

“The judges said that the winner’s analysis of Merseyside business issues was told with unerring focus on the effects of key issues on the lives of readers. The Business and Finance Journalist for 2018 is Alistair Houghton of the Liverpool Echo.”

Highly Commended:

Graham Huband, The Courier

“The judges described the highly commended entry as a mixture of crisply-written news and authoritative analysis. Highly commended is Graham Huband, The Courier.”

SPECIALIST WRITER/ IMPACT JOURNALIST OF THE YEAR

Winner:

Marion Scott, Sunday Post

“The judges said that the winner produced immensely powerful journalism, the story of donated organs that gave transplant patients cancer instead of saving their lives, grabbed headlines at home and around the world. The winner of Specialist Writer – Impact Journalist of the Year goes to Marion Scott of the Sunday Post.”

 Highly Commended:

Jennifer Williams, Manchester Evening News

“The highly commended entrant produced fine writing in what was a competitive field. Well done to Jennifer Williams of the Manchester Evening News.”

SUPPLEMENT OF THE YEAR

Winner:

Chalktalk, Evening Telegraph

“The judges said that few newspapers who try to involve school children pull it off as well as this entry did, praising the combination of high production values of the daily title with the words of the young people themselves. The top Supplement of the Year in 2018 is the Evening Telegraph’s Chalktalk.”

Highly Commended:

Weekend, Western Mail

“Highly commended for “an eye-catching supplement package displaying meticulous attention to detail” is Weekend, Western Mail.”

COLUMNIST OF THE YEAR DAILY PAPERS – Sponsored by Asda

Winner:

Carolyn Hitt, The Western Mail

“The judges said her columns gave Wales a voice. Often personal and amusing this columnist knows her readers well. Columnist of the Year Daily Papers is Carolyn Hitt of the Western Mail.”

Highly Commended:

Catriona Stewart, The Herald

“The judges said that the highly commended columnist provided new insight into her patch, with thought provoking stories that sparked debate and intrigue. Well done to Catriona Stewart of The Herald.”

COLUMNIST OF THE YEAR WEEKLY PAPERS – Sponsored by Asda

Winner:

Mike Lockley, Sunday Mercury

With an easy and entertaining style this columnist uses well-crafted comedy and anecdote to make telling points. Columnist of the Year Weekly Papers is Mike Lockley of the Sunday Mercury.

 Highly Commended:

Mandy Rhodes, Sunday Post

“With heart-felt, incisive and compelling copy, highly commended goes to Mandy Rhodes of the Sunday Post.”

SPORTS JOURNALIST OF THE YEAR DAILY PAPERS

Winner:

Paul Abbandonato, WalesOnline

“A clutch of classic articles, from in-depth analysis and brilliant interviews to genuine exclusives. The judges were impressed by the Ryan Giggs managerial appointment exclusive that even some Welsh FA officials were unaware of. Sports Journalist of the Year Daily Papers goes to Paul Abbandonato of the WalesOnline.”

 Highly Commended:

Neil Loughran, The Irish News

“For great storytelling across the board the judges highly commended Neil Loughran of The Irish News.”

SPORTS JOURNALIST OF THE YEAR WEEKLY PAPERS

Winner:

Jon Colman, The Cumberland News

“A consistently strong spread of stories, highlights included an exclusive on the Syrian billionaire trying to buy Carlisle football club. Sports Journalist of the Year Weekly Papers goes to Jon Colman of The Cumberland News.”

 Highly Commended:

Chris Harby, Melton Times

 Paul Ferguson, Sunday Life

“The judges decided to highly commend two entries. Well done to Paul Ferguson of Sunday Life and Chris Harby of the Melton Times.”

SOCIAL MEDIA JOURNALIST OF THE YEAR

Winner:

Mal McCann, The Irish News

“The judges said that 2018 saw the winner expertly use image and video to tell stories and engage with audiences. Social Media Journalist of the Year is Mal McCann of The Irish News.”

 Highly Commended:

Joshua Knapman, WalesOnline

“The judges said that the work of the highly commended entrant used a variety of platforms and data tools to champion community engagement. Highly commended is Joshua Knapman, WalesOnline.”

DATA JOURNALIST OF THE YEAR

Winner:

Martin Williams, The Herald

“The winner mixed strong journalism with reader interaction to create engaging reads on topics such as ScotRail’s timetable shambles and the decline of Scottish salmon. The winner of Data Journalist of the Year 2018 is Martin Williams, The Herald.”

Highly Commended:

Claire Miller, Reach Data Unit

“Highly commended for confident handling of different data sets is Claire Miller from Reach Data Unit.”

DIGITAL LIVE NEWS REPORTER OF THE YEAR

Winner:

Kristian Johnson, Leeds Live

“The winner’s portfolio showcased impressive short documentary skills along with interesting and untold stories. The winner of Digital Live News Reporter of the Year is Kristian Johnson, Leeds Live.” 

 Highly Commended:

Cathy Owen, Media Wales

“Highly commended for what judges called excellent use of social media, goes to Cathy Owen at WalesOnline.”

DIGITAL LIVE SPORTS REPORTER OF THE YEAR

Winner: 

Michael Bailey, The Pink Un

“The winner is a polished and professional presenter, following Norwich City with personality and humour, the winner of Digital Live Sports Reporter goes to Michael Bailey at The Pink Un.” 

 Highly Commended:

Gareth Hanna, Belfast Telegraph Digital

“Highly commended for a portfolio demonstrating skills across a range of sports is Gareth Hanna of the Belfast Telegraph Digital.”

REPORTING COMMUNITIES AWARD – Sponsored by Penny Appeal

Winner:

BirminghamLive, Birmingham Live

“The judges praised the well-crafted coverage that focused on major festivals in the Muslim calendar, informing the wider readership of events and their background. The winner of the Reporting Communities Award for 2018 goes to Birmingham Live”

Highly Commended:

Hull Live, Hull Daily Mail

 Will Hayward, WalesOnline

“The judges decided to highly commend two entries. Well done to Hull Live from the Hull Daily Mail and Will Hayward of WalesOnline.”

WEEKLY PHOTOGRAPHER OF THE YEAR – Sponsored by Facebook

Winner:

Keith Heppell, Cambridge Independent

“The winner had a portfolio of superbly timed photography, that expertly captured the magnitude of big local moments. The winner of Weekly Photographer for 2018 is Keith Heppell of the Cambridge Independent.”

Highly Commended:

Mark Williamson, Stratford-upon-Avon Herald

“Highly commended for a strong selection of beautifully crafted images is Mark Williamson of the Stratford-Upon-Avon Herald.”

DAILY/SUNDAY PHOTOGRAPHER OF THE YEAR – Sponsored by Facebook

Winner:

Simon Hulme, The Yorkshire Post

“The winner produced stunning images, capturing moments that others have overlooked, judges praised the canny use of lighting and lenses throughout the portfolio. Winner of Daily / Sunday Photographer of the Year goes to Simon Hulme, The Yorkshire Post.”

 Highly Commended:

Mal McCann, The Irish News

“Highly commended for his powerful images is Mal McCann of The Irish News.”

FEATURE WRITER /LONG FORM JOURNALIST OF THE YEAR

Winner:

Jennifer William, Manchester Evening News

“The winner showed that painstaking and solid research underpins quality journalism, judges were impressed by the thorough investigation into Manchester homelessness. The Feature Writer – Long Form Journalist of the Year for 2018 goes to Jennifer Williams of the Manchester Evening News.”

Highly Commended:

Laura Davis, Liverpool Echo

“Highly commended for showcasing the diverse cultural interests of Liverpool is Laura Davis of the Liverpool Echo.”

WEEKLY REPORTER OF THE YEAR

Winner:

Charles Thomson, Yellow Advertiser

“The winner impressed judges with the depth of investigative journalism displayed in the entries with stories that amply demonstrate the tremendous value of local reporting. Weekly Reporter of the Year for 2018 goes to Charles Thomson of the Yellow Advertiser.”

Highly Commended:

Jon Macpherson, Accrington Observer and Rossendale Free Press

“With deft handling of hard-hitting news, the highly commended entrant is Jon Macpherson of the Accrington Observer and Rossendale Free Press.”

DAILY/SUNDAY REPORTER OF THE YEAR

Winner:

Martyn McLaughlin, The Scotsman and Scotland on Sunday

“The winner’s painstaking research and dogged determination led to a marvellous investigation into Donald Trump’s golfing activities in Scotland, a story of local, national and international interest. The Daily/Sunday Reporter of the Year 2018 is Martyn McLaughlin of The Scotsman and Scotland on Sunday.”

Highly Commended:

Phil Coleman, News and Star

“Highly commended for work investigating a bogus psychiatrist is Phil Coleman of the News and Star.”

DESIGNER OF THE YEAR: NEWSPAPER

Winner:

Kelly Leung, The Journal

“The judges said that the winner’s portfolio showcased a superb use of graphics as well as excellent design techniques for easy on the eye visual work.  Designer of the Year: Newspapers is Kelly Leung of Reach Data Unit.”

 Highly Commended:

Gus Proctor, The Courier and Advertiser

 Ian Bond, Hull Daily Mail

“The judges highly commended two in this category. Congratulations to both Gus Proctor of The Courier and Advertiser and Ian Bond of the Hull Daily Mail.”

DESIGNER OF THE YEAR: MAGAZINE

Winner:

Gus Proctor, The Courier and Advertiser

“The winner submitted a portfolio demonstrating clean and expressive work which made features leap out of the page. Judges said the entries were brilliantly conceived as well as executed. The winner of Designer of the Year: Magazines goes to Gus Procter, The Courier and Advertiser.”

Highly Commended: 

Lindsay Molloy, Essex Living

“Highly commended with a portfolio showcasing excellent layout and illustrations is Lindsay Molloy of Essex Living.”

MAGAZINE OF THE YEAR – Sponsored by No 1 Lounges

Winner:

Cumbria Life magazine, Cumbria Life

“Judges described the winning magazine as confident, authoritative and full of engaging content. With great writers, strong production values and a clear passion for their patch the winner of Magazine of the Year 2018 is Cumbria Life magazine.”

 Highly Commended:

Altrincham Today, Altrincham Today

“Judges called this highly commended entry a complete local community magazine with a touch of class. Well done to Altrincham Today.”

FRONT PAGE OF THE YEAR DAILY PAPER

Winner:

Armistice 100, The Yorkshire Post

“The judges said that the winning front page perfectly captured the importance of the Armistice centenary with a dignified and elegant touch. The winner of Front page of the Year Daily Paper goes to The Yorkshire Post with Armistice 100.”

Highly Commended:

The Anniversary of the Manchester Bomb, Manchester Evening News

“Highly commended goes to a front cover that marked the anniversary of the Manchester Bomb with dignity and grace. Highly commended is The Anniversary of the Manchester Bomb by the Manchester Evening News.”

FRONT PAGE OF THE YEAR WEEKLY PAPER

Winner:

Here’s one chimney Santa didn’t climb down, Cambridge Independent

“The judges said that the winning front page held a fantastic image capturing a truly impressive demolition of a historic brickwork chimney, supplied with a nice touch of seasonal humour.  Front Page of the Year Weekly Papers 2018 goes to the Cambridge Independent with Here’s One Chimney Santa Didn’t Climb Down.”

Highly Commended:

River of Tears, Carmarthen Journal

“Highly commended for a front cover that accurately reflected the mood of a community after the devastating flooding in Carmarthenshire. River of Tears by the Carmarthen Journal.” 

SCOOP OF THE YEAR

Winner:

Bogus doctor’s life of lies, News & Star

“The winner was a story of significant public interest with major ramifications. The judges called this a classic: a local reporter has a hunch, follows it up and scoops the world. The winner of Scoop of the Year 2018 goes to the News & Star for Bogus doctor’s life of lies.”

Highly Commended:

Hidden Homeless, Manchester Evening News

“For a three-part series of exclusive investigations that revealed the scale of the homelessness in Manchester, highly commended goes to Manchester Evening News with Hidden Homeless.”

WEBSITE OF THE YEAR

Winner:

Manchester Evening News

“The winner combined elegant headlines and compelling storytelling with smart use of audience engagement to stand out in the digital crowd.  Website of the Year for 2018 goes to the Manchester Evening News.”

Highly Commended:

The Yorkshire Post

“The highly commended entry’s website works excellently in tandem with the paper and its commitment to covering news which matters to its regional audience won high praise from the judges. Highly commended is The Yorkshire Post.”

CAMPAIGN OF THE YEAR DAILY PAPER

Winner:

One North, The Yorkshire Post

“The winner was chosen by judges for leading more than 20 regional titles in uniting against the poor northern train services. This entry demonstrated the collective power of Britain’s regional press. The winner of Campaign of the Year Daily Paper is One North by The Yorkshire Post.

 Highly Commended:

BrumFeeds, Birmingham Live

The judges highly commended a superbly-executed campaign that brought to life the stories of real people forced to rely on food banks, many due to Universal Credit. Congratulations Birmingham Live for Brum Feeds.”

CAMPAIGN OF THE YEAR WEEKLY PAPER

Winner:

Newry Clean-Up, Newry Reporter

“The winner goes to an environmental campaign that showed the power of hands-on collaboration between the public and environmental groups to engage in a transformative and lasting clear-up. The winner of Campaign of the Year Weekly Paper is Newry Clean-Up by the Newry Reporter.”

Highly Commended:

We Need It Now, Devon Live

“For a campaign that resulted in the allocation of 93 million pounds for local road improvements, highly commended goes to Devon Live for We Need It Now.”

MAKE A DIFFERENCE ~ People’s Choice Award – #JournalismMatters

Winner: Yellow Advertiser, Shoebury Sex Ring Exposed

“The winner of the Making a Difference People’s Choice Award goes to an investigatory campaign into child sex abuse that required tenacity, intelligence and courage. Hours of work has led to the police investigation being reopened and the victims’ stories being told at last. The winner of the Making a Difference People’s Choice Award is the Yellow Advertiser with Shoebury Sex Ring Exposed.

SOCIAL MEDIA TEAM OF THE YEAR

Winner:

WalesOnline

“The winner demonstrated powerful storytelling using innovative and original ideas to publish breaking news. Judges liked the overall tone of the content and experimental nature of much of the work. Social Media Team of the Year for 2018 goes to Wales Online.”

 Highly Commended:

Chronicle Live

“Highly commended for carefully crafted content that provides a vital source of news is Chronicle Live’s social media team”

DIGITAL INITIATIVE OF THE YEAR – Sponsored by Google

Winner:

Geraint the Robot Reporter, WalesOnline

“The winner is an innovative piece of technology that dramatically saves reporters’ time. Using Amazon’s text-to-speech service to make software that transforms a written report into an mp3 file for audio news reports, the Winner of Digital Initiative of the Year 2018 is Geraint the Robot Reporter from Wales Online.” 

Highly Commended:

Instagram Initiative, Manchester Evening News

“The highly commended entry is a community focused initiative that reflects the pride people have living and working in Manchester. Highly commended goes to the Manchester Evening News, Instagram Initiative.”

THE OVERALL DIGITAL AWARD

Winner:

Liverpool Echo

“The winner is an excellent example of quality journalism thriving online. A comprehensive digital offering with impressive co-ordination across various online tools to engage audiences. Winner of The Overall Digital Award 2018 is the Liverpool Echo.”

Highly Commended:

Reach Data Unit

“With a range of data-led investigations, exclusive stories and interactives, highly commended goes to Reach Data Unit.”

INNOVATION AND INITIATIVE AWARD

Winner:

Norfolk Day, Eastern Daily Press

“The winner was a well-executed initiative that produced some excellent content culminating in the creation of a day celebrating the community spirit in the county of Norfolk. Innovation and Initiative Award 2018 goes to the Eastern Daily Press for Norfolk Day.”

Highly Commended:

Oxford United 125 Years, Oxford Mail

“Highly commended for a commemorative magazine that clearly showed the close relationship between a football club, its fans and the city. Well done the Oxford Mail for Oxford United 125 Years.”

THE CATHRYN NICOLL INTERVIEWER OF THE YEAR AWARD

Winner: Molly Williams, Sheffield Star

“The winner showed a classic example of public interest journalism, an extensive interview that gave readers a unique glimpse into the world of Sheffield City Council’s leader. Winner of The Cathryn Nicoll Interviewer of the Year Award is Molly Williams of the Sheffield Star.”

FREE WEEKLY NEWSPAPER OF THE YEAR

Winner: Slough & Windsor Express

“The judges said that the winner’s coverage of two royal weddings and a visit by President Trump put them in the international spotlight. Owned by a charitable trust that puts 80 percent of its profits back into the community it serves, the winner of Free Weekly Newspaper of the Year is the Slough and Windsor Express.”

 Highly Commended:

Islington Tribune

 The Jewish news

“The judges decided to highly commend two entries. Well done to both the Islington Tribune and The Jewish News.”

PAID FOR WEEKLY NEWSPAPER (BELOW 10,000) – Sponsored by Facebook

Winner:

Henley Standard

“The winner is a paper that has maintained its tradition of solid, in depth reporting with a variety of news, features, diary items, investigations and campaigns. Its small team covers it all. The winner of Paid for Weekly Newspaper Below 10,000 circulation is the Henley Standard.”

Highly Commended:

Hexham Courant

 Impartial Reporter

“The judges decided to highly commend two entries, both are newspapers that continually stand out from the crowd and serve their communities to the highest standards. Congratulations to both the Hexham Courant and Impartial Reporter.”

PAID FOR WEEKLY NEWSPAPER (ABOVE 10,000) – Sponsored by Facebook

Winner:

Newbury Weekly News

“The winning paper features a comprehensive package of strong stories, in-depth community news pages, a vibrant entertainment section and lively letters pages. This year’s winner of Paid for Weekly Newspaper Above 10,000 circulation is the Newbury Weekly News.”

 Highly Commended:

Bucks Free Press

“Highly commended for an impressive series of campaigns and investigations is the Bucks Free Press.”

DAILY/SUNDAY NEWSPAPER (BELOW 15,000) – Sponsored by United Utilities

Winner:

Herald on Sunday

“The winner was a paper that emerged in the summer of 2018, creating a new, fresh, and modern approach that packed a punch but didn’t follow the crowd. Offering excellent journalism with fresh and powerful designs, the winner of Daily/Sunday Newspaper below 15,000 circulation is the Herald on Sunday.”

Highly Commended:

Jersey Evening Post

 Birmingham Mail

“The judges decided to highly commend two entries in this category, both serving busy and diverse communities. Congratulations to both the Birmingham Mail and the Jersey Evening Post.”

DAILY/SUNDAY NEWSPAPER (ABOVE 15,000) – Sponsored by United Utilities

Winner:Belfast Telegraph

“The winner, however, had a truly exceptional year. The paper prides itself as Northern Ireland’s leading daily in print and online, with an outstanding 148-year reputation for impartial, in depth coverage. Selling across the sectarian and political divides to unionists and nationalists, Catholics and Protestants, this paper demands to be read. Winner of Daily/Sunday Newspaper of the Year above 15,000 circulation is the Belfast Telegraph.”

Highly Commended:

Eastern Daily Press

“The highly commended entry continues to cover the issues that matter most to its readers. Hard news, investigations and important campaigns remain vital whilst continually reminding those of the great county it represents. Well done to the Eastern Daily Press.” 

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