18 May, 2012

APN publications and key website nzherald.co.nz have taken out nearly all of the major awards at this year’s Canon Media Awards, held in Auckland tonight.

The flagship Weekend Herald was judged Newspaper of the Year while also being named Weekly Newspaper of the Year. Its daily counterpart The New Zealand Herald was a finalist in the Newspaper of the Year category. The Weekend Herald’s magazine Canvas was named Best Newspaper Inserted Magazine.

This is the fifth year in a row that either Weekend Herald, The New Zealand Herald or Herald on Sunday has been named Newspaper of the Year.

The company’s main website nzherald.co.nz took top digital honours being named Best Online News Site as well as Best Website overall. nzherald.co.nz has won the best news website award four times in the last six years and has been named best website overall for the second year in succession.

New Zealand Listener was named Best Newsstand Magazine, the third time in six years. In the regional newspaper section, Bay of Plenty Times was named Newspaper of the Year (up to 30,000 circulation) while The Star, Christchurch, took out the award for Community Newspaper of the Year. This is the first time APN’s regional newspapers have won both awards in the same year. APN regional dailies have won the regional daily award in three out of the last four years.

Weekend Herald editor David Hastings described his paper’s award as a great honour. “This is especially so because so much good journalism was produced across the country in one of the most challenging years for newspapers, with the Christchurch earthquake, Japanese tsunami as well as the big set pieces of the Rugby World Cup and the general election. The award is a tribute to the staff, reporters, photographers and those on the production side who worked so hard to stay on top of events.”

Hastings said the aim was always to make the Weekend Herald as compelling to readers as it could be, brightly packaged with a relaxed weekend feel at the same time as it tackled the serious issues of our times.

nzherald.co.nz editor Jeremy Rees said his team had focused considerable attention on the quality of its digital story-telling. “This has really paid off with readers spending more time during a site visit than on any other New Zealand website.”

New Zealand Listener editor Pamela Stirling said this year’s win is tremendous testimony to the magazine’s continuing excellence in a competitive media landscape.
“The Listener has a high calibre team of dedicated, passionate and extremely talented people who really are at the top of their game. Our aim is to produce a compelling magazine that is not afraid to rattle cages but which is a positive, energising force in the nation’s cultural and intellectual life.”

Bay of Plenty Times editor Scott Inglis said the win recognised the paper’s strong coverage of the Rena disaster.

“Our journalists and photographers put in a lot of hard work and did a terrific job of bringing readers high-quality coverage of this huge story. I’m proud of them.”
Star editor Barry Clarke said the award recognised the efforts and tenacity of Star and APN journalists in converting the bi-weekly broadsheet Star to a morning daily tabloid after the quake to meet the heightened public demand for information and news.

“All these people went more than the extra mile, in amazingly difficult circumstances, to produce a great paper. I’m grateful to them all.”

More than 40 APN journalists and photographers made the finals of individual categories with 15 taking out top honours.


Rick Neville
Ph 021 279 6447