Journalists from Trinity Mirror’s Liverpool Daily Post and Liverpool Echo were celebrating last night (Thursday, July 2, 2009) after scooping eight awards at the second O2 Media Awards in Cheshire and Merseyside.
Newspapers, television and radio broadcasters and on-line publishers took part in the competition to find the cream of the crop in regional journalism.
In the print categories, the Warrington Guardian defended its title as Newspaper of the Year, beating both daily and weekly newspapers across the region. Shortlisted newspapers included the Liverpool Echo, the Southport Visiter, the Wirral Globe and the Runcorn and Widnes Weekly News.
The judging panel said the Warrington Guardian delivered news and sport stories that consistently set the agenda for national print and broadcast media.
They said: ‘Its news reporters weren’t afraid to stick their noses in where it hurts.’
Eight journalists from the Liverpool Echo and Liverpool Daily Post stables landed individual awards, including Luke Traynor who was crowned Reporter of the Year and Paddy Shennan who was named O2 Feature Writer for the second year running.
Judges described Paddy as a ‘class act’ who nailed every idea that was thrown at him.
The Daily Post’s Laura Davis picked up two awards, Digital Journalist of the Year and Entertainment Writer of the Year, a new category introduced this year to reflect 02’s work in the area of arts and entertainment and sponsorship of the O2 Arena and 02 Academy venues across the UK.
Laura shares the Entertainment Writer of the Year crown with Echo colleague Jade Wright. Judges described both as superb and talented writers.
BBC North West Tonight’s Jayne Barrett was named Broadcaster of the Year for her brilliant and comprehensive reporting on Liverpool’s year as Capital of Culture.
Judges said: ‘Over 12 months she got completely under the skin of the big events, generating interest with her own genuine enthusiasm.’
The news team from ITV’s Granada Reports won the overall Team of the Year crown in a fiercely contested battle with North West Tonight and newspaper teams from the Mid Cheshire Guardian and BBC Radio Merseyside.
Judges picked Granada Reports for its ‘all round ability to deliver news, features, sport and entertainment in ways that both informed and brought a smile or a tear.’
Granada Reports also picked up the award for sports journalism and reporter Caroline Hacking rounded off a successful night when she was presented with a Special Achievement Award in recognition of her talent and all-round ability.
Judges described her as ‘One of the brightest sparks in the region and a star in the making.’
The event, which was held at O2’s Customer Service Centre at Preston Brook in Cheshire, attracted more than 100 journalists.
Weekly newspaper writers were also honoured in a number of categories. The weekly Young Journalist of the Year award went to Miranda Newey from the Warrington Guardian.
The Southport Visiter won Scoop of the Year for their unusual story about a teenager, arrested on the little known charge of ‘stealing by finding’, after handing in a mobile phone he’d found in the street to his local police station.
In the radio categories, BBC Radio Merseyside won the award for Radio Broadcaster of the Year, beating individual shortlisted finalists Michelle Ponting from Key 103 and Laura Harmes from City Talk.
Judges included Paul Newman, Director of Communications at Media City; Paul Byrne of the Daily Mirror, Peter Charlton, editor of the Yorkshire Post; Jan Lever, Newsquest regional Managing Director and Richard Catlow, Chairman of the Society of Editors and former Editorial Director for Greater Manchester Weekly Newspapers.
O2 employ more than 1,700 people at its Centre in Preston Brook.
The Cheshire and Merseyside O2 Media Awards are part of a series of regional media contests launched by the communications company across the north of England.
Glenn Manoff, O2’s Director of Communications and Reputation, said the awards recognised outstanding media coverage of issues affecting communities across Cheshire and Merseyside.
‘The quality of entries from the region’s press was outstanding. We’re delighted to be able to celebrate the huge service local and regional journalists provide in our towns and cities,’ he said.
The winners and finalists were:
Scoop of the Year
Steve Hothersall – Radio City and City Talk
Sports Journalist of the year
Granada Reports Sports Team
David Bettley – Runcorn and Widnes Weekly News
Chris Hall ‘ Granada Reports
Young Journalist of the year Dailies
Ben Schofield – Liverpool Daily Post
Liza Williams ‘ Liverpool Daily Post
Samantha Ann Parker ‘ Liverpool Daily Post and Echo
Young Journalist of the Year Weeklies
Miranda Newey ‘ Warrington Guardian
John Siddle ‘ Southport Visiter
Matthew Davis ‘ Stockport Express
Feature Writer of the Year
Paddy Shennan ‘ Liverpool Echo
Justin Dunn ‘ Wirral Globe
Nicola Davies ‘ Warrington Guardian
Emma Pinch- Liverpool Daily Post
Business Reporter of the Year
David Bartlett – Liverpool Daily Post
Alistair Houghton ‘ Liverpool Daily Post
Alex Turner ‘ Liverpool Daily Post
Photographer of the Year
Gareth Jones ‘ Liverpool Daily Post and Echo
Jason Roberts ‘ Liverpool Daily Post and Echo
Mike Boden ‘ Warrington Guardian
Entertainment Writer of the Year
Laura Davis – Liverpool Daily Post, Jade Wright – Liverpool Echo
Peter Grant – Liverpool Echo
Reporter of the Year
Luke Traynor – Liverpool Echo
Jennifer Williams – Stockport Express
Gemma Jaleel – Trinity Mrirror- Mediamix
Editorial Team of the Year
BBC ‘ North West Tonight
BBC Radio Merseyside
Mid Cheshire Guardian Series
Newspaper of the Year
Runcorn and Widnes Weekly News
TV Broadcast Journalist of the Year
Jayne Barrett – BBC North West Tonight
Andy Bonner – Granada Reports
Radio Broadcaster of the Year
BBC Radio Merseyside ‘ News Team
Laura Harmes ‘ Radio City and City Talk
Michelle Ponting – Key 103
Digital Journalist of the Year
Laura Davis – Daily Post
Richard Down ‘ Daily Post
David Bartlet’ Daily Post
Special Achievement Award
Caroline Hacking ‘ Granada Reports