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November NQJ: Departing daily journalist scores awards double

alistair-grantA departing regional daily journalist scooped two awards in the process of sitting his senior exams.

Edinburgh Evening News city council reporter Alistair Grant, left, triumphed in the Esso Award for best news report and the Society of Editors Award for best news interview following last month’s National Qualification in Journalism exams.

Alistair, who is leaving the Evening News in January to take up a new role with the Sunday Post, was praised by examiners for a “highly competent performance” in the news report exam and a “terrific flowing story” following the news interview.

For his double, Alistair receives a cheque for £500.

He said: “I’m really chuffed with my results. It’s hard to know how you’ve done after exams like these, so it was a pleasant surprise.

“The NQJ can be quite a tough process. Preparing for exams, and putting together a large logbook, isn’t easy when you’re also working full-time in a newsroom. But it was definitely worth it in the end, and I’d recommend it to anyone.”

rachel-howarthThe Ted Bottomley Award for best media law and practice paper was won by the Knutsford Guardian’s Rachel Howarth, left.

The National Council for the Training of Journalists’ chief examiner said Rachel had shown “excellent law and ethical knowledge” in an “exceptional paper”.

Rachel herself said: “When the results arrived I was almost too nervous to open them, but when I finally mustered the courage I couldn’t believe it.

“I am really proud of my law result, it was always my favourite subject throughout my prelims and the refresher course and I am so happy that the hard work has paid off.”

ashleigh-withallAshleigh Withall-Prince, of the Ripley & Heanor News, won the Newsquest Award for best logbook.

The senior examiner said: “A good deal of hard work went into this submission and the inclusion of a wide range of impressive stories showed the breadth of her talent.”

Ashleigh said: “I am extremely happy and honoured to have not only passed the NQJ but to have won the logbook award – it is the icing on the cake and was worth all the hard work.”