Nearly half qualify as seniors in NCE

Some 123 reporters qualified as senior journalists by passing their National Certificate Exams (NCE) in October.

The pass rate for the Autumn round of exams was 47 per cent, compared with 55 per cent for April 2004 and 35 per cent in October 2003.

This round of exams was the second in which the National Council for the Training of Journalists has included marks for a logbook of submitted articles in addition to the speech, newspaper practice and news interview exams.

The newspaper practice paper had increased emphasis on media law and journalists were allowed reference to a legal textbook during the examfor the first time.

In their report the NCTJ examiners said: “Permitting the use of legal text books, giving access to the ready reference available in newsrooms to make the test more realistic, may have added to candidates’ confidence. It certainly didn’t lead to a major improvement in marks or provide any evidence to indicate, as critics of the change forecast, a dumbing down of the examination.”

Lena Davis from the Slough Observer won the Society of Editors’ award for the best news interview.

John Brenan of the Worcester Evening News won the Esso award for producing the best speech story.

Paul Taylor from the Macclesfield Express won the Ted Bottomley award, sponsored by the Midland News Association, for the best newspaper practice paper.

The Newsquest award for the best logbook went to Jonathan Dodds, a reporter on the Buxton Advertiser .

The successful candidates were: BOURNEMOUTH Kieran Fox, Southern Daily Echo; Angela Gallen, Dorset Echo; Lynn Jackson, Daily Echo, Bournemouth; Sarah Jones, Southern Daily Echo; Simon Jones, The News, Portsmouth; Claire Port, The News, Portsmouth; Emily Pykett, Dorset Echo; Chris Semple, Southern Daily Echo; Paul Stamp, Basingstoke Gazette.

CORNWALL

Claire Green, The Somerset County Gazette; Aislinn Simpson, Western Morning News; Aimee Louise Thomas, Western Morning News.

DARLINGTON Kate Bowman, The Northern Echo; Andrea Johnson, Darlington &; Stockton Times; David Punton, Morpeth Herald; Lucy Richardson, Hexham Courant; Rachel Anne Ryan, Lancaster & Morecambe Citizen; Samantha Start, News Guardian , Tyne & Wear; Fiona Thompson, Scarborough Evening News; Paul Turner, North West Evening Mail; Bethany Usher, Sunderland Echo.

EAST SURREY

Simon Ashall, Surrey & Berkshire Newspaper Holdings; Joanna Bowring, Wandsworth Guardian; Patrick Clift, Kentish Times Newspapers; Robert Green, South Wales Evening Post; Linda Harrison, The Argus, Brighton; Franck Marceteau, Reading Evening Post; Kerry McQueeney, Croydon Guardian; Andy Tate, The Argus, Brighton.

GLOUCESTER

Madeline Biddulph, Oxford Mail; Darren Evans, South Wales Argus; Rhiannon Llewellin, Milford Mercury; Lee Macgregor, Carmarthen Journal; Ian Morris, Hereford Times; Abigail Parkes, Herald Express, Torquay; Matthew Smith, Banbury Guardian; David Thomas, The Citizen, Gloucester; David Wilcock, Banbury Guardian.

HARROW

Lena Davies, Slough Observer; Cameron Millar, Slough Observer; James Young, Bucks Free Press.

IN OFFICE

Richard Cooper, Milton Keynes Citizen; Rebecca Fisher, Worcester Evening News; Clare Fitzsimmons, Stratford Standard; Emma Mercer, Maldon & Burnham Standard; Andy Sykes, Blackpool Gazette.

HARLOW Francesca Rose Bardsley, Newmarket Journal; Sophie Barnett, Clacton Gazette; Johanna Bell, Evening Gazette , Colchester; Roger David Brown, This is Essex; James Burrows, Chelmsford Weekly News; Louise Dunderdale, Welwyn & Hatfield Times; Sarah Gowler, Cambridge Evening News; Alison Kershaw, Epping & Ongar Guardian; Angela Knight, St Albans Observer; Simon Lambert, Luton Herald & Post; Eleanor Mayne, Bedfordshire on Sunday; Thomas Parkes, Evening Gazette , Colchester; Neil Puffett, Hemel Hempstead Gazette; Lorna Ramsey, Brentwood Gazette; Jon Ryan, Hertfordshire Mercury; Wesley Smith, The Luton News.

LEEDS

Lee Stephen Clark, Driffield Times; Marie Daniels, Scarborough Evening Post; Helen Goodwin, Dewsbury Reporter; Emma Harris, Halifax Evening Courier; Deborah Hessell, Spenborough Guardian; Andrew McLean, Wakefield Express; Alice Mooney, Driffield Times; Charlotte Percival, York & County Press; Andrew Swales, Holderness Gazette.

LEICESTER

Katherine Barney, Nottingham Evening Post; Nathan Black, Boston Standard; Joanna Dickinson, Lynn News; Lewis Hannam, Norwich Evening News; Robert Hart, Grantham Journal; Rachael Limbrick, The Forester; Patrick Mears, Northants Evening Telegraph; Emma Pearson, Lincolnshire Echo; Maria Thompson, Harborough Mail.

LIVERPOOL

Edward Chadwick, Bolton Evening News; Catherine Jane Cronin, Chorley Citizen; Jenny Dixon, Sale & Altringham Messenger; Paul Keaveny, Warrington Guardian.

LONDON

Alice Eaton, Limited Edition; Kay Harrison, Hastings & St. Leonards Observer; Nicholas Hodgson, Derby Evening Telegraph; Nina Jacobs, South London Guardian; Janine Kelso, North London Newspapers; Kate Mead, Kentish Times Newspapers; Joanna Parkes, Redhill & Reigate Life; Cameron Ramos, Waltham Forest Guardian; David Rankin, Surrey Comet; Vince Soodin, Bucks Free Press; Jane Wharton, Bishops Stortford & Harlow Citizen.

SHEFFIELD

Daniel Bond, Worksop Guardian; Paul Costello, Barnsley Chronicle; Jonathan Dodds, Buxton Advertiser; William Kilner, Matlock Mercury; Carolyn Mitchell, Macclesfield Express Advertiser; James Alan Mitchinson, Worksop Guardian; Phillip Norton, Grimsby Evening Telegraph; Noel Oxford, Worksop Guardian; Joanne Parkinson, Mansfield Chad; Jonathan Peck, Staffordshire Newsletter; Paul Quibell, freelance; Jon Rhodes, Gainsborough Standard; Paul Speed, The Louth Leader; Paul Taylor, Macclesfield Express Advertiser.

STRATHCLYDE

Lucinda Cameron, Paisley & Renfrewshire Gazette; Jody Harrison, Greenock Telegraph; Deborah Punshon, Carluke Gazette; Jennifer Wood, East Fife Mail.

WOLVERHAMPTON

John Brenan, Worcester Evening News; Emily Bridgewater, Bromsgrove Messenger/Advertiser ; Mark Butt, Halesowen News; Claire Victoria Charles, Evesham Journal ; Oliver Paul Evans, Kidderminster Shuttle and Times ; Rebecca Hayes, Kidderminster Shuttle and Times ; Sally-Anne Jones, Worcester Evening News; Daniel Kendrick, Worcester Evening News; Joanna Lafferty, Malvern Gazette ; Mathew Martin, Evesham Journal.

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