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Journalists’ Charity
Wales Media Awards 2022




Magazine of the Year

Western Mail Weekend magazine


An excellent package covering all aspects of Welsh life, was how one judge described the Western Mail’s Weekend magazine. It was considered to offer everything a reader would want with always an interesting and absorbing front page and main story. The September issue on the toll of Covid was outstanding, said the judges, with heart-breaking human interest interviews. A superb magazine.                                                        

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Camera Operator of the Year

Tom Brown, BBC Sport Wales                                                                


There is an integrity in Tom Brown's self-shooting technique which fulfils his aim to get closer to his subjects and it is an effective style, said the judges The Olympic views carry the feel of quiet anticipation and he has turned the conditions to his advantage. Nice action shots of Jade Jones. The piece on sprinter James Ledger successfully illustrates the effect of visual impairment in sport and in daily life.


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Independent Community Journalism

Cwmbran Life                                                                                             


A really good community journalism entry that offers its followers a good grip on what is happening in their area. In particular, the tribute piece to a foster mother was able to go into greater detail and at longer length than the main media could provide. A good example of why community journalism matters, the judges all agreed. Community is important and something which should be valued and celebrated.


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Feature Writer of the Year

Will Hayward, Wales OnLine & Western Mail


Powerful, important and terrifying in equal measure. This is journalism that matters, exposing inequalities, telling the stories of those most affected by the pandemic and fronting up those in power to demand the answers we all need to hear. Outstanding work by the writer which deserves the widest possible reading decided the judges. An exceptional entry.                         


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Columnist of the Year

Sara Robinson, Western Mail                                                                 


This entry contained three excellent, well written columns, said the judges. Sara has a lot of talent. She shows true columnist skill in the way she artfully takes us along a path of winning us over with her argument but without ever resorting to hyperbole or shock tactics. Her columns are gentle, light yet meaningful. She writes with structure and technical ability and her endings are particularly strong. 


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Photographer of the Year

Joann Randles, Cover Images                                                                 


Effective photography and a strong image with effective lighting resulted in well thought out photographs, agreed the judges  They thought the hive inspection photo felt other worldly. The protective suits, the hemmed in feeling and the vapour all added to the atmosphere. The lengths Joann went to for the swimmers’ image were exceptional and brave. It all paid off with an incredible shot which tells a strong story.


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Vlog/Blog of the Year

Chris Knight, ohwhataknight.co.uk                                        


Very well-constructed pieces of travel journalism, was the view of the judges. Excellent technical quality with good use of high vantage points to outline the whole walk with key points of interest. First class camera work with a range of shots and good use, but not overuse, of a drone to provide a wider perspective. Chris has done all the shooting and editing himself to provide thoroughly enjoyable pieces packaged to just the right duration of between five and ten minutes.



Newspaper Journalist of the Year

Will Hayward, Wales OnLine & Western Mail                                    


Will is an experienced reporter who certainly knows his stuff, agreed the judging panel Three covid-inspired entries were extremely well-written and comprehensively researched with plenty of stats and graphics, and sought to find answers to some searching questions in true investigative journalism style.  A stand-out entry from a skilled journalist.



Audio News Journalist of the Year

Mark Hutchings, BBC Radio 4 and BBC Radio 5 Live                                                    


Impressive work which showed the strengths of Mark as an interviewer and radio journalist, the judges said. The first two items about the postmaster who was wrongly convicted of fraud against the Post Office put a very human side to a national scandal. Mark also clearly worked hard to get access to the Llanelli field hospital, something the authorities were not keen to do at a time when close family couldn't visit patients. In all some terrific radio, and good journalistic spadework. Excellent.


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TV Journalist of the Year

Rob Osborne, ITV Cymru Wales                                              


Every Newsroom should have a Rob Osborne, said one judge. I could watch Rob forever – he is always thoughtful, a great communicator, said another.  Rob’s reports are often quirky, with a touch of eccentricity which viewers love and which is therefore so much more effective in getting the message across. Rob has an unique talent of immediately engaging the viewer. So refreshing to see a reporter who thinks outside the box, they all agreed.


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News Website of the Year

BBC Cymru Fyw                                                                                                         


One of the most informative news sites in Wales. Yes, it does have the full resource of the BBC behind it, but this site is more than that. Stories are frequently updated as they happen as in the case of sports events and the pandemic memorial service and an easy to navigate breakdown of the Senedd after the elections. There are also original well written articles such as then man going into a care home where his family can't visit and the lack of good Mental Health Care in the Welsh language. 


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Daily/Sunday Newspaper of the Year

South Wales Echo                                                                                                     


This is a newspaper that I would happily buy and read every day if I lived in Cardiff, said one judge. It has an excellent range of content, mixing hard and lighter news items very effectively. What makes this paper stand out is its breadth of well-written stories while not being afraid to focus on key issues in special editions. The special at the start of the pandemic covers a lot of ground, and manages to reassure as well as looking at other countries’ experience and what that might mean for Wales.


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Weekly Newspaper of the Year

Powys County Times                                                                                 


The Powys County Times is a well-crafted, attractive newspaper which prides itself on giving its readers newsy, informative reading. In particular, it has worked through the pandemic to provide updates and to highlight the disease’s impact locally, and has been one of the few weekly newspapers to join the Welsh Government’s press conferences. Page layout is both clear and effective, story count is high, the range coverage is wide, ensuring that court and council are accompanied by some excellent human interest tales. The County Times has built on its success as last year’s category winner to be the standout entry once again.



Specialist Journalist of the Year

Hannah Thomas, ITV Cymru Wales                                                       


Hannah has an ability to engage with viewers in a clear, entertaining and informative manner. The judges all agreed that she is a consummate TV reporter, lucid, concise and engaging. Her reports reinforce our understanding of the importance of the agriculture industry and the impact the sector has on all our lives. She clearly has a strong understanding of her brief and has won the confidence of the farming community across Wales. 


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Political Journalist of the Year

Will Hayward, Wales OnLine & Western Mail                                    


This is entry was an extraordinary collection of articles outlining political mistakes and human tragedy through the first 18 months of the pandemic. The outline of ’29 things the Covid inquiry must look at’ has enough detail and research to power a whole inquiry by itself. The writing is passionate and angry in a way which makes this submission stand out. It’s truly campaigning in its desire to tell the whole story of the Covid tragedy in Wales. Will is to be congratulated for his tenacious campaigning journalism.



Audio News & Current Affairs Programme of the Year

BBC Radio Cymru – Dros Frecwast                                                                       


A good morning news programme, agreed the judges. Gary Owen had an emotional interview with a nurse in Morriston where she described the strain on staff dealing with patients who are very ill and dying in lockdown. The task of a morning news radio programme like Dros Frecwast is to set the day's agenda for the listener, and do it in a way which keeps them listening, and coming back for more. Those who listen to Dros Frecwast will have a very good idea of what is happening in Wales.


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Sports Journalist of the Year

David Owens, Nation Cymru                                                                   


This entry shows how well-researched insight into the subject matter combined with enthusiasm and an ability to write engaging copy is a winning formula. David Owens’ high profile transfer to Nation Cymru has given the Welsh sports media landscape the spark and edge it needed. He writes from a fan's point of view, but with authority and plenty of humour: "air miles that would tip Greta Thunberg over the edge" is just one example of his original tone. and style, he has a much wider frame of reference than your average sports scribe which is so refreshing.


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Ed Townsend Student Journalist of the Year

Nest Jenkins, Cardiff University CJS News                                             


All the entries in this student category deserve strong praise, said the judges. These were extremely competent and polished pieces for student work. The piece to camera in the studio about the latest lockdown rules was well delivered - confident and easy to understand. It would not have looked out if place on a local news programme. Nest clearly has a bright future. 


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TV News & Current Affairs Programme of the Year

ITV Cymru Wales – Coronavirus: A Care Home’s Story


“I challenge anyone to watch this programme without shedding a tear”, said one judge.  It evokes sorrow because of the separation of loved ones, but also inspiration thanks to the dedication of the staff.  The snow scene is priceless. It deserves the highest marks in this category because of the powerful effect on the viewer. The material was also brilliantly put together in what must be the most memorable factual documentary during this pandemic.


Young Journalist of the Year

Joe Robinson, Flintshire & Wrexham Leader                               


Joe’s submission contained great human-interest stories, covered with sensitivity and a deftness of touch. The headlines and lead sentences all draw you in immediately and the pace of each story is excellent. All three examples showed competence, flair and a knack for digging out compelling human interest stories via social media and turning them into real journalism. Joe writes in a lucid and accessible fashion, Excellent work agreed all the judges.


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Journalist of the Year

Will Hayward, Wales OnLine & Western Mail


“This was brilliant journalism at a time of national crisis and catastrophe. It spoke up for ordinary people, explored the detail to expose inequalities and demanded answers from those in power. In a year when all journalists across Wales rose to the challenge of a lifetime, this reporter showed why a free press is important to society”, said the chairman of the Wales Media Awards judging panel, emeritus editor of the Press Association Jonathan Grun.


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Outstanding contribution

Clare Hudson


The event paid tribute to the work of reporters in war-torn Ukraine this pre-recorded video address from one of the county’s top journalists, Vadym Karpiak, who hosts the political talk show 'Freedom of Speech'.


To view or download the video, click here.



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Photo courtesy of Natasha Hirst Photography. For more of her images, click here.

Photo courtesy of Natasha Hirst Photography. For more of her images, click here.