The Sunday Mercury broke the story of the gay dads who adopted three children that was followed up by the nationals.
The Birmingham-based Trinity Mirror paper said it landed the exclusive interview after spending time winning the trust of the gay couple and kept a pledge not to reveal their identities to protect the children.
Its splash was followed by a threepage special report written by the Mercury’s Jeanette Oldham.
The impact of the 3 October story was immediate. It was followed up by the Daily Express, Daily Mail, The Sun and Daily Star, as well as broadcasters.
It was the second week running that a Mercury story was picked up by the nationals.
Reporter Fionnuala Bourke’s splash about a 20-year-old single mum with six children led to a series of followups in the press and on television.
Sunday Mercury editor David Brookes said: “As a Sunday newspaper, we compete with the nationals week in and week out and we are consistently first with the big Midland stories that go on to make national headlines.”
By Jon Slattery