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West of England winners revealed

The Plymouth-based Western Morning News has won the coveted 1999 BT West of England Daily Newspaper of the Year category for the first time after being a runner-up three times in the previous four years.

Barrie Williams, editor of the Western Morning News, is pictured above with two members of his winning team – Julie Wheldon, who was runner-up as Newcomer of the Year, and Richard Cowdrey, who was runner-up as Sports Journalist of the Year.

Last year’s winning newspaper, the Evening Post, Bristol, shared the runners-up spot with its sister paper the Western Daily Press, itself a three times previous winner of this category.

Daily News Journalist of the Year went to Tom Richmond of the Express & Echo, Exeter, (pictured below with his certificate) who was a runner-up last year.

This year, Stephen Grant of the Evening Herald, Plymouth, and Tom Henry of the Western Daily Press were runners-up.

More pictures from the event can be seen by clicking here.

The full list of winners appears below. Click on the blue link over each category to read the judges’ comments and see more pictures.


Daily Newspaper of the Year:
Winner: Western Morning News
Highly Commended: Evening Post, Bristol and Western Daily Press

Weekly Newspaper of the Year:
Winner: Somerset County Gazette
Highly Commended: Somerset Guardian; Weston & Somerset Mercury and Wiltshire Times

News/Current Affairs Programme of the Year:
Winner: West Eye View, HTV West
Highly Commended: Eclipse Live, Carlton Westcountry Television and Classic Gold 666 & 954 (Devon)

Website Publication of the Year:
Winner: by Western Media Publishing Ltd
Highly Commended: by North Devon Journal and by Western Media Publishing Ltd

Daily News Journalist of the Year:
Winner: Tom Richmond, Express & Echo, Exeter
Highly Commended: Stephen Grant, Evening Herald, Plymouth and Tom Henry, Western Daily Press

Weekly News Journalist of the Year:
Winner: Ian Shepherd, Cornish Guardian
Highly Commended: Tristan Cork, Malmesbury Standard and Ceri Doyle, Weston & Somerset Mercury

Radio News Broadcaster of the Year:
Winner: Tim Hubbard, BBC Radio Cornwall
Highly Commended: Chris Blount, BBC Radio Cornwall and Mark Cummings, BBC Radio Gloucestershire

Television News Broadcaster of the Year:
Winner: Matthew Hill, BBC News West
Highly Commended: Steve Brodie, BBC News West; Alison Delaney, HTV West and James Garrett, HTV West

Feature Writer of the Year:
Winner: Will Simpson, The Big Issue South West
Highly Commended: Jane Gillard, Western Morning News and Matthew Reeder, Evening Advertiser, Swindon

News Photographer of the Year:
Winner: Sam Moore, Freelance, Cornwall
Highly Commended: Glenn Phillips, Wiltshire Times and Steve Pope, Herald Express, Torquay

Sports Journalist of the Year:
Winner: Geoff Twentyman, BBC Radio Bristol
Highly Commended: Roland Arblaster, HTV West; Richard Cowdery, Western Morning News and David Pedler, North Devon Journal

Business Journalist of the Year:
Winner: Chris Starkie, Evening Post, Bristol
Highly Commended: Carys Edwards & Neil Gallacher, BBC South West and Rob Sims, Express & Echo, Exeter

Society of Editors Newcomer of the Year:
Winner: Jonathan Gibson, Carlton Westcountry TV
Highly Commended: Megan Lloyd Davies, Express & Echo, Exeter and Julie Wheldon, Western Morning News

All individual winners received a cheque for £250, an engraved glass trophy and a commemorative certificate. Runners-up were presented with a cheque for £50 and a commemorative certificate.

The winners of the four group categories – the website publication of year, programme of the year and the daily and weekly newspapers of the year – received an engraved glass trophy, a commemorative certificate and a cheque for £500 to be donated to a charity or worthy cause of their choice.

The awards were presented by Peter Kinsella, the head of BT’s group newsroom, at a lunchtime ceremony at Bristol’s Hotel Inn Crowne Plaza attended by more than 70 guests. The competition attracted 231 entries.

The judges were Carol Davies, editor, Canterbury Times and Folkestone Herald & Express Series; Martin Dunn, editor in chief, Associated New Media (Daily Mail); Derval Fitzsimons, editor, Independent Radio News; David Johnson, editor, Doors Culture Section, Sunday Times; Ken Lennox, picture editor, News of the World; Peter Lindsey, editor, Eastbourne Gazette & Herald Series; Henry Macrory, assistant editor, Daily Star; Vin Ray, executive editor newsgathering, BBC Television; John Ryan, sports editor, Sunday Telegraph; Bob Satchwell, ombudsman, Society of Editors; Nigel Thomas, production editor, Mail on Sunday; Andrew Thompson, editor, BBC Breakfast News.

The remaining two regional finals in the BT awards are:

  • Southern region on May 26. To see who’s been nominated, click here
  • Scotland on June 1. To see who’s been nominated, click here

Winners from all the regional finals will compete in the national finals in London on June 29.

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