THE QUALITY of the Shetland media was again recognised at this year’s Highlands and Islands Media Awards, held in Inverness on Friday, when local press organisations won in three categories and were runner-up in a fourth.
Making the headlines were online news service Shetland News picking up two honours.
Our website won for the second time in four years the Best Use of Digital Media category for our coverage of the solar eclipse in March, our general election coverage and the extensive work that has gone into reporting every aspect of the Alistair Carmichael saga, including reporting ‘live’ from the election court in Edinburgh.
And our chief reporter Neil Riddell was separately honoured for his Top Story of the Year work on revealing the true extent of the troubles at Loganair, a story that continues to have massive implication throughout the Highlands and Islands area.
Meanwhile, Shetland Times reporter Ryan Taylor was named Reporter of the Year, for the second time in three years, while the paper had been shortlisted in the Newspaper of the Year category.
Picking up two awards for Shetland News, Riddell said: “I’m very pleased to win this award. It’s always nice to be recognised by your fellow professionals.
“I’d like to thank all at Shetland News, in particular Pete and Hans for giving me the freedom to spend time working on stories which are of paramount importance to all of us islanders.
“I also think a lot of credit must go to the guys behind the voluntary campaign to tackle the multitude of problems facing Loganair, Scott Preston and James Stewart.”
Last year, visitors to the Shetland News website at www.shetnews.co.uk made almost seven million page views.
Winners of the other award categories were:
Best Use of Gaelic – Calum MacLean, BBC Alba;
Young Journalist of the Year and the Alex Main Trophy – Ellie House, Inverness Courier;
Sports Reporter of the Year – Will Clark, North of Scotland Newspapers;
Photographer of the Year – Gair Fraser, Scottish Provincial Press;
Top Shot of the Year – Trevor Martin, freelance, Inverness;
Feature Writer of the Year – Moira Kerr, freelance, Oban;
Community Newspaper of the Year – Chatterbox, Black Isle;
Newspaper of the Year – Strathspey and Badenoch Herald;
Diageo Journalist of the Year – Moira Kerr, freelance, Oban;
Barron Trophy for Lifetime Achievement in Journalism – Paul Breen, Inverness.