Your Evening Star fights for you

CELEBRATIONS were under way at The Evening Star today after the title was declared Britain's Daily Newspaper of the Year at a glittering awards ceremony in London.

Nigel Pickover

CELEBRATIONS were under way at The Evening Star today after the title was declared Britain's Daily Newspaper of the Year at a glittering awards ceremony in London.

It is the second year running that the Star has been recognised by industry peers as the best paper in the country*, a stunning tribute to Ipswich and Suffolk's campaigning daily and its team.

And in a second major triumph, journalist Jonathan Elsey was declared Designer of the Year, judges describing his work - including graphics of the interior of serial killer Steve Wright's Ipswich home - as outstanding.

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The Press Gazette awards, the newspaper industry's "Oscars", took place at the Royal Lancaster Hotel, Lancaster Gate, London, and saw the cream of Britain's regional press descend from every part of the country.

Judges described the campaigning Star - currently fighting to keep open the head and neck cancer unit at Ipswich Hospital, as a “ballsy paper from front to back”.

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Evening Star editor Nigel Pickover said the award, presented by broadcaster Nick Ferrari, was a huge honour - and significant in that rarely is it awarded to a title "back to back".

“We are thrilled and delighted to have been recognised as best in class yet again.

“We fight for the people of the Ipswich region day and night, in bright and dynamic multi-media ways and challenge those in authority when things are mishandled and when no-one else shouts up.

“The judges noted that we have the courage to speak up on behalf of people who do not have a voice - and we are not afraid to tackle difficult issues, or difficult people."

“We have now scooped seven newspaper of the year awards on the national stage in the past 12 years - and 15 top newspaper of the year gongs in total. It's a huge tribute to the team, across our entire newspaper spectrum, who bring out the Star - but also an honour for the people of the Ipswich area who trust us to fight on their behalf.”

Judges were thrilled with the Star's Shining Lights initiative, when positive stories about young Suffolk people appeared on every page of the paper. They also warmed to the 13 news pages and 32-page backgrounder on serial killer Steve Wright, noting it was of the quality expected by a national newspaper.

They were also impressed by the paper's repeated revelations on the takeover of Ipswich Town by magnate Marcus Evans.

The paper's submission also featured the ongoing Somebody's Daughter crusade, aimed at providing a safe haven for drug-trapped sex workers in the Ipswich area.

Designer of the Year Jonathan Elsey is on holiday in France and his award was collected by chief reporter Grant Sherlock, who spearheaded the coverage of the Steve Wright case and the court case earlier this year.

* The Star's honour was in the 40,000 circulation and under category.

Can The Evening Star help you in any way? Do you want to tell us a story, or for us to launch an investigation on your behalf? Contact our newsdesk on 01473 324788, e-mail or write to The Evening Star, Press House, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, Suffolk, IP4 1AN.

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