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Northern Scot wins award

SCOTLAND’S First Minister, Mr Jack McConnell, confirmed on Friday that we’ve got a great “Scot”, when he handed over the award for Newspaper of the Year in the Highlands and Islands to “Northern Scot” editor Pauline Taylor and deputy editor and group chief sub-editor Mike Collins.
It was the second time in three years that the paper had won the title, and it completes a hat-trick of awards over the past 12 months; the “Scot” already holds the BT Scotland Weekly Newspaper of the Year and BT UK Weekly Newspaper of the Year titles.
Awarded for “hard-edged news reporting, comment and a high standard of sports reporting and feature writing”, the prestigious Highlands and Islands title comes with £500 for charity. The money is to be donated to the Moray Flood Relief Fund.
Announcing this year’s media awards at the Press Ball in the Newton Hotel, Nairn – at which the First Minister was guest of honour – chairman of the judges, Mr Gordon Fyfe, public relations manager for Highland Council, said: “Our winners boast an excellent team of writers and sub-editors, who are getting used to picking up top prizes.
“The worst floods in years and the Nat Fraser murder trial were top stories on their doorstep, but they covered both in style.”
It was a night in which the “Scot” hit the headlines, scooping four of the top awards. In addition to best newspaper title, Mrs Taylor received the Barron Trophy for outstanding achievement in journalism; chief reporter Chris Saunderson was named Sports Journalist of the Year, and Eric Cormack Local Newspaper Photographer of the Year.
The Barron Trophy, donated in 1950 by the late Evelyn Barron, proprietor of ‘The Inverness Courier’, was revived seven years ago. Mrs Taylor is the first female winner since its revival.
Mr Fyfe said: “Pauline is enjoying a sensationally successful and rewarding period at the helm of the weekly newspaper, with which she has served for 24 years. She is a past winner of the Scottish Weekly Journalist of the Year title, and recently she played a major role in helping the newspaper win a hat-trick of awards.
“Pauline has also taken on a prominent campaigning role in the local community. This has included support for the Maternity Unit in Moray (MUM) campaign, which helped secure a specialist maternity unit at Dr Gray's Hospital, Elgin, and the recent Moray Hospice Campaign.
“More recently, Pauline instigated the Elgin bypass campaign, and recently addressed the Scottish Parliament’s Petitions Committee in support of an 8,000-signature bypass petition.”
Announcing Chris Saunderson’s award, Mr Fyfe said: “He has provided ‘Northern Scot’ readers with a quality sports service. He gave us an interview with the Hulk, an uncompromising Lossiemouth defender, who not so incredibly got himself sent off for breaking the leg of a young opponent from Rothes.”
And announcing Eric Cormack’s award, he said: “Our winner is a first-time entrant, who provided an excellent portfolio of six photographs. He is another from that successful stable at the Northern Scot in Elgin.”
The Highlands and Islands Media Awards are co-sponsored by Diageo, producers of the Classic Malts of Scotland, who put up prize money of £2,000.
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www.northern-scot.co.uk/

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