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News staff celebrate as prizes are handed out

Newspaper staff around the country have been celebrating after scooping awards at Johnston Press’s annual awards.

The winners were announced during the group’s annual editorial and newspaper sales conference held in London where the awards were presented by chairman Roger Parry and chief executive Tim Bowdler.

Two titles were declared joint winners of the Weekly Newspaper of the Year section, chosen from a shortlist of 12, the standard of which judges said was so high they were unable to decide on an outright winner.

Instead, they chose two – the Bucks Herald and the Harrogate Advertiser.

Peter Sands, director of the Editorial Training Centre in Hastings, who led the judging panel, said: “This was the hardest of all the categories to judge.

“The standard of some of the weekly papers is very, very good and we found ourselves reading and re-reading and continually changing our minds.”

The judges said the Bucks Herald had “fantastic depth and a community feel” and the Harrogate Advertiser displayed “good quality writing, excellent balance and real authority.”

The winner of the Daily Newspaper of the Year section was the Yorkshire Evening Post, one of the titles recently acquired by Johnston Press from RIM.

The judges described the paper as “an attractive dynamic package with a full range of interesting stories, readable features and strong community coverage”.

The other editorial winners were:

  • Free Newspaper of the Year – Milton Keynes Citizen
  • Best Editorial Content on a Website – Halifax Courier
  • Best Daily Newspaper Front Page – Lancashire Evening Post
  • Best Weekly Newspaper Front Page – Burnley Express
  • Best Editorial Idea – Lynn News
  • Trainee Journalist of the Year – Laura Edwards, Luton Herald & Post

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