The NUJ proved yesterday that you don't need a big events team and fat cheques from corporate sponsors to run an awards' ceremony.
For a few thousand pounds they were able to save the 2010 Regional Press Awards after the Wilmington Group, which had hung on to them after disposing of Press Gazette, decided to drop the event this year on the grounds they would not "be viable" in the current economic climate.
NUJ general secretary Jeremy Dear (top), introducing the event, said: "We hope the industry itself will recognise local and regional journalists. If it doesn't we will consider running these awards again. We think it is vital to recognise the hard work you all do."
Apart from, hopefully, embarrassing those who were too quick to bin a great event, the NUJ also showed that the awards could be impartially judged. How else could the big winner at the event be The News, Portsmouth, owned by Johnston Press - the company that has just taken the NUJ to court to stop a group-wide strike?
- For all the winners see post below.