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Austin dethroned after seven-year winning streak

The seven-year reign of Jon Austin as EDF Energy East of England daily print journalist of the year came to an end today as a colleague pipped him to this year’s award.

Basildon Echo investigations editor Jon was nominated for the title for the eighth year in succession, but his winning streak came to an end as he lost out to fellow Echo reporter Gina Marden.

The awards, held in association with HoldtheFrontPage. were handed out today at the Radisson Blue Hotel at London’s Stansted Airport.

Now in their ninth year, the East of England Awards cover Norfolk, Suffolk, Essex, Cambridgeshire, Hertfordshire and part of Bedfordshire.

There were two prizes for Archant Norfolk’s Michael Bailey, who was named both digital journalist of the year and sports journalist of the year for his print and online coverage of Norwich City.

And the front page of the year prize went to the Newmarket Journal for its coverage of the death of racing trainer Sir Henry Cecil with what the judges said was a “beautifully emotive image.”

The Eastern Daily Press was named best daily paper while The Comet, Hitchin won best weekly free newspaper and the Lowestoft Journal best weekly paid-for.

Best website was after it underwent a redesign to bring its branding more into line with that of print title the Cambridge News.

Campaign of the year went to the Essex County Standard for its Cassie’s Law campaign, which was launched after a child was killed by a driver who had refused to surrender his driving licence following another accident three days earlier.

The full list of winners was as follows:

Newcomer of the Year: Emma Burrows, ITV Anglia

Digital Journalist of the Year: Michael Bailey, Archant Norfolk

Specialist Journalist of the Year: Jon Wright, BBC Radio Suffolk

News photographer of the Year: Ian Burt, Archant

Designer of the Year: Annette Hudson, Archant Norfolk

Sports Journalist of the Year: Michael Bailey, Archant Norfolk

Columnist of the Year: David Giles, Southend Echo and Colchester Gazette

Feature Writer of the Year:  Lydia Fallon, Cambridge Newspapers

Radio Journalist of the Year: Tom Horn, Heart Cambridgeshire

Television Journalist of the Year: Sally Chidzoy, BBC TV

Print Journalist of the Year (Weekly):  Ciaran Gold, Hertfordshire Mercury

Print Journalist of the Year (Daily):  Gina Marden, Basildon Echo

Front Page of the year: Newmarket Journal – ‘Farewell to a Legend’

Community Campaign of the year: Essex County Standard/Colchester Gazette – Cassie’s Law

Website of the Year: Cambridge News Online –

Radio News or Current Affairs Programme of the Year: BBC Radio Suffolk

Television News or Current Affairs Programme of the Year: ITV News Anglia

Weekly Free Newspaper of the Year: The Comet

Weekly Paid for Newspaper of the Year: Lowestoft/Southwold Journal

Daily Newspaper of the Year: Eastern Daily Press

All the winners from the EDF Energy East of England awards ceremony at Stansted