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More sponsors come on board for regional awards

Organisers of this year’s Regional Press Awards have signed up two more major sponsors to help celebrate the best in local journalism.

Retail giant Asda and energy company UK Power Networks are both supporting next month’s event which will recognise the achievements of the regional press in 2010.

As well as sponsoring the awards, Asda will be providing the wine for the reception and lunch due to take place in London on 11 May.

And UK Power Networks, which was formed last year when EDF Energy sold its networks in London, the South East and East Anglia, is to sponsor the Weekly Reporter of the Year prize.

This year’s awards are being organised on a not-for-profit basis by the Society of Editors in association with the Newspaper Society, HoldTheFrontPage, the Press Association and the Journalists’ Charity which will benefit from any surplus generated.

Last month it was announced that lottery operator Camelot had signed up as the main sponsor of the event.

Awards organiser Bob Satchwell, executive director of the Society of Editors said: “We are delighted to have support from such important organisations.

“Thanks to the support of our partners and sponsors we aim to ensure that regional journalism is properly recognised for its quality, vitality and rich diversity that is unmatched anywhere in the world.”

An Asda spokesperson said the company was delighted to be helping to make the awards a success.

Founded in the 1960s, the Leeds-based superstore is one of Britain’s leading retailers, with 385 stores across the UK.

UK Power Networks’ senior media manager Claire Byrd added:  “UK Power Networks is happy to support these awards, which recognise the strength and importance of local and regional newspapers.

“The quality and originality of entries received is a testimony to the high quality journalism that is alive and well in local media.”