Hull Daily Mail triumphs at O2 Media Awards

The Hull Daily Mail was named Yorkshire and the Humber’s top daily newspaper at last night’s regional O2 Media Awards.

The paper also won the award for Editorial Team of the Year for its work producing a special edition, remembering those killed in World War Two bombing raids on Hull. The edition contained stories censored for publication during the war years and carried the names of the 1,241 people who died in the attacks.

Award judges described the Mail as “exciting… a newspaper that took risks and believed wholeheartedly in speaking out for the communities it served.”

Reporter Nicky Harley rounded off a hat trick for the paper picking up the News Reporter of the Year crown.

More than 150 journalists working across newspapers, television, radio and specialist publications attended this year’s awards ceremony at the Northern Ballet Theatre in Leeds.

Sixteen awards were presented celebrating the work of the regional press in their communities.

The Rotherham Advertiser retained its title as the region’s top weekly with judges praising the editorial team’s consistent approach to news, sport and features and for delivering a comprehensive, value for money newspaper.

BBC Look North staffer Nicola Rees was named TV Journalist of the Year and was presented with her award by Falklands War veteran Neil Wilkinson, whose story featured among her winning portfolio.

Other VIPs included Emmerdale stars Fiona Wade and Bhasker Patel; former Home Secretary Jack Straw; world champion boxer Ryan Rhodes; pop fashion designer Kelly Ewing and Yorkshire representatives of the Normandy Veterans Association.

Cerebral Palsy victim Evan Whitton, the eight-year-old boy inspired to walk for the first time in his life by Great Britain’s Olympic team, presented the award for Sports Reporter of the Year to BBC Radio Sheffield’s Paul Walker.

Radio Journalist of the Year was awarded jointly to Radio Aire’s Claire Warren and BBC Radio Leeds’ Johnathan l’Anson. There was also a double award in the Feature Writer of the Year category which was shared by Stephen Lewis of the Press, York and Rod McPhee of the Yorkshire Evening Post.

Scoop of the Year went to Mark Whitty’s team at ITV Calendar for a series of reports which re-opened the investigation into the disappearance of Sheffield toddler Ben Needham, who went missing on the Greek island of Kos 20 years ago. Ben’s mother Kerry presented the team with their trophy.

Yorkshire Post reporter Greg Wright was named Business Journalist of the Year while his Post newsroom colleague Emily Heward took the title of Young Journalist of the Year.

Three new categories were introduced to this year’s awards. O2 Specialist Publication was won by the Leeds Student newspaper, who beat off challenges from the Yorkshire Post and Bradford Telegraph and Argus; Multi Media Journalist of the Year was won by the Sheffield Star’s Graham Walker while O2’s Emerging Talent Award – aimed at media students in colleges and universities across the Yorkshire and the Humber regions – was won by NCTJ press photography student Alex Whitehead.

The award for Outstanding Contribution to the Media Industry this year went to Cyril Skinner of the Bridlington Free Press who at 80 years old is believed to be Britain’s oldest sports reporter.

Journalists were also shown a film, created by young people as part of O2’s Think Big initiative, on teenagers’ perceptions of the media.

Nicola Green, head of Communications and Reputation for O2 UK, said: “Since the awards first launched in Yorkshire and the Humber four years ago we’ve seen the media industry go through huge changes but one thing has remained constant … the tremendous role that regional journalists perform in their communities.

“Whether they work in print, digital or broadcast mediums or increasingly these days across all of these spectrums, regional journalists continue to inform, entertain and protect the villages, towns and regions they serve,” she added.

Notes to Editors:

The full results for the O2 Yorkshire and the Humber 2012 Media Awards were as follows:

Multi Media Journalist of the Year

Graham Walker – Sheffield Star

Runner Up:
Vicky Carr – Harrogate Advertiser

Feature Writer of the Year

Joint Winners:
Stephen Lewis – The Press, York
Rod McPhee – Yorkshire Evening Post

Runner Up:
Joe Shute – Yorkshire Post

Photographer of the Year

Stephen Garnett – Craven Herald

Runners Up:
Rob Stebbing – Hull Daily Mail
Simon Hulme – The Yorkshire Post

Sports Journalist of the Year

Paul Walker – BBC Radio Sheffield

Runners Up:
Paul Goodwin – Doncaster Free Press
Richard Sutcliffe – Yorkshire Post

Specialist Publication of the Year

Leeds Student Newspaper

Runners Up:
Bradford Telegraph and Argus (Diamond Decade)
Yorkshire Post (100 day to Olympics)

Radio Broadcast Journalist of the Year

Joint Winners:
Claire Warren – Radio Aire
Johnathan l’Anson – BBC Radio Leeds

Television Broadcast Journalist of the Year

Nicola Rees – BBC Yorkshire Look North

Runner Up:
Alan Whitehouse – BBC Yorkshire Look North

Young Journalist of the Year

Emily Heward – Halifax Courier/Yorkshire Post

Runners Up:
Samantha Gildea – Batley and Birstall News
Katy Forrester – Hull Daily Mail
Juliette Bains – Yorkshire Evening Post

News Reporter of the Year

Nicky Harley – Hull Daily Mail

Runners Up:
John Roberts – Yorkshire Post
Joe Shute – Yorkshire Post
Nicola Rees – BBC Yorkshire Look North

Business Journalist of the Year

Greg Wright – Yorkshire Post

Runners Up:
David Hirst – ITV Yorkshire Calendar
Catherine Lea – Hull Daily Mail

Scoop of the Year

ITV Yorkshire Calendar – In search of Ben Needham

Runners Up:
BBC Radio York – Hospital patient set on fire
Wetherby News – Free Billy Burton
Hull Daily Mail – Aye Aye Captain

Editorial Team of the Year

Hull Daily Mail

Runners Up:
BBC Radio York
Yorkshire Post (Saturday Magazine)

Newspaper of the Year – Weekly

Rotherham Advertiser

Runners Up:
Bridlington Free Press
Dewsbury Reporter
Wakefield Express

Newspaper of the Year – Daily

Hull Daily Mail

Runners Up:
Yorkshire Post
The Press, York

Outstanding Contribution Award

Cyril Skinner – Bridlington Free Press

For more information contact:

Ann McCracken
t:07850 708009
m:07850 708009

About O2 in the UK
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