Evening Standard hailed as Londoner of the Year at Press Awards

·3-min read
Evening Standard hailed as Londoner of the Year at Press Awards

The Evening Standard scooped an award for its work during the pandemic at the London Press Club awards.

It won the Londoner of the Year accolade for its response to the challenges the newspaper industry has faced during the past 18 months.

As he announced the Standard had won the award, LBC presenter Nick Ferrari said: “Of all the challenges to the media industry, none were greater than that faced by the Evening Standard.

“One minute copies were being picked up by readers all across London. The next thing Boris had ordered the nation to stay at home and London streets, Tubes, trains and buses were empty.

“The editorial team as with all publications performed technical acrobatics working from kitchen tables.

“The even greater task was getting the paper to readers in a city which had become eerily silent.

“The Standard’s owner backed the plea from the editor and the editorial team to keep the Standard printing. An unprecedented move switched thousands of copies from street distribution to being pushed through letter boxes of homes. The Standard stepped up its focus on digital platforms and kept printing more than 500,000 copies.

“The Standard even launched a major campaign that raised £10 million for its partner the Felix project to supply an incredible 20 million meals of food that would otherwise be thrown away to the hungry in London.”

“The Standard has always been as much a part of London as red buses and taxis. When it could so easily have become a victim of Covid, the Standard retained its commitment to Londoners and kept printing.

“That’s why this year we have chosen the Evening Standard as Londoner of the Year.”

Accepting the award, Evening Standard chairman John Paton said it was in recognition of its “extremely talented and dedicated team”.

He said: “I want to thank the Press Club for this amazing award . I’m accepting it only on behalf of our extremely talented and dedicated team. The Standard is a lot like London in that it gets knocked down a lot but it gets back up and both and the city and the paper do that and continue to do that.

“So thank you to all to all of the journalists, everyone at the Evening Standard. And thank you to [proprietor] Lord Lebedev whose unfailing support for this newspaper kept us going and continues [to do so].”

Teenage tennis sensation Emma Raducanu also won a Londoner of the Year award after her incredible victory at the US Open.

Andrew Marr speaking at the Press Awards (Supplied)
Andrew Marr speaking at the Press Awards (Supplied)

Reporter Abbianca Makoni won Young journalist of the Year for her work with the Standard, when she completed her apprenticeship with work that included investigating the plight of hidden child victims of lockdown and reporting on communities who have supported the most vulnerable during the pandemic.

The Standard’s Home Affairs editor Martin Bentham was shortlisted in the specialist journalist of the year category, and was praised in particular for his successful exposure of a London couple who were in secret court proceedings over allegations that they brought nearly £14 million of dirty money into Britain.

That award was won by Dan McCrum and the Financial Times team that exposed the truth about a fraud at the heart of giant German payments group Wirecard.

Among other winners were David Williams of the Daily Mail who won journalist of the year, Lyse Doucet of the BBC who won broadcaster of the year and the Daily Mail which won newspaper of the year.

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