Mary Murtagh of the Liverpool Echo was crowned news reporter of the year in the first regional O2 Media Awards for newspapers, broadcasters and online journalists across Cheshire and Merseyside, held last week.
Murtagh, who the judges described as a ‘terrier-like reporter when fronting up rogue tradesmen but sensitive enough to land great human interest stories”, was joined by two of her Echo colleagues on the winner’s podium.
The Echo’s Paddy Shennan scooped the award for feature writer of the year and Colin Lane, who also works on the Echo’s Trinity Mirror stablemate the Liverpool Daily Post, was crowned photographer of the year.
Young journalist of the year was a tie between the Post’s David Bartlett and Natasha Robson of the Southport Champion, and the Post was awarded scoop of the year for its coverage of Liverpool’s Matthew Street Festival fiasco.
Granada Reports’ editorial team was named team of the year and Granada’s Tessa Chapman was also named broadcast journalist of the year.
The Warrington Guardian was named newspaper of the year, and judge Paul Horrocks, editor of the Manchester Evening News said: ‘The Guardian had a great mixture of stories, with great layout and great pictures. The editorial team didn’t settle for just reporting the news they created the next instalment and put themselves at the heart of everything that happened in their community.”
Hosting the ceremony at 02’s headquarters in Preston Brook, Halton, were Glenn Manoff, head of communications, O2, UK and Dave Massey, head of communications strategy.
Manoff said the awards would recognise outstanding media coverage of issues affecting communities across Cheshire and Merseyside. “It is high time we celebrated the huge service local and regional journalists provide in our towns and cities.”
The full list of winners:
Digital journalist of the year
Tony Clixby, Chester Chronicle
Photographer of the year
Colin Lane , Liverpool Daily Post and Echo
Feature writer of the year
Paddy Shennan, Liverpool Echo
Sports journalist of the year
Steve Hothersall, Radio City
Young journalist of the year
Joint winners: David Bartlett, Liverpool Daily Post and Natasha Robson, Southport Champion
TV broadcast journalist of the year
Tessa Chapman, Granada Reports
Radio broadcaster of the year
News reporter of the year
Mary Murtagh, Liverpool Echo
Scoop of the year
Editorial team of the year
Newspaper of the Year