‘Borough News’ Scoops gold award

Some people like it so much they keep back numbers

Some people like it so much they keep back numbers

Eastleigh Borough Council scooped a ‘Gold Winner award’ for the ‘Best External Publication’ at the glittering Wessex & Channel Islands Chartered Institute of Public Relations (CIPR) Pride awards evening held at St Mary’s Stadium.

The Council won its award for ‘Borough News,’ its flagship publication designed to keep residents informed about a wide range of Council activities, services, events and projects happening across the borough. Recognised by the judges for its eye catching and engaging design, informative content as well as providing great value for money; Borough News is distributed to nearly 53,000 homes across the Borough four times a year.

Corporate Communications Manager, Gaetana Wiseman, said

“It’s fantastic for the Borough News to be recognised as an award winning publication and for all our hard work. We know our residents really enjoy reading the Borough News and we are always looking at ways to improve it and make it an interesting and eye-catching read!”

EBC's Award winning team

EBC’s Award winning team

CIPR President Sue Wolstenholme FCIPR, commented:

“The Wessex & Channel Islands CIPR PRide Awards celebrate the very best public relations campaigns, teams and individuals from across the region. The exceptional quality of entries received this year is a real testament to the thriving industry which exists here in the Wessex & Channel Islands region. The CIPR PRide Awards represent the best, most creative and most effective public relations work across the UK regions and nations and to win an award is a great achievement.”

This year saw a large number of the region’s leading public relations practitioners attend the annual awards ceremony, hosted by Steve Power from Wave 105FM. The full list of the regions PRide Awards winners can be accessed via the CIPR website.

The CIPR PRide Awards, sponsored nationally by Precise, PRWeek and RedBrand/Specialist Speakers, receive entries from freelancers, consultancies and in-house teams across 12 UK regions and nations. The judging process for the PRide Awards is rigorous with a national panel of industry experts assessing the shortlisted entries and choosing the winners. The 2013 Chairs of Judges, Gill Dandy FCIPR, Senior Consultant at The Centre for Strategy and Communication, and Chris Genasi FCIPR, Senior Consultant at APCO Worldwide, assisted in ensuring a fair and consistent judging process.

  7 comments for “‘Borough News’ Scoops gold award

  1. Barry
    November 25, 2013 at 12:07 pm

    Wish they spent tax-payers money on the real things that matter and not propaganda for the FIB DEM oligarchy

  2. mm
    Eastleigh Xpress
    November 25, 2013 at 1:30 pm

    First of all congratulations to EBC’s communications team.

    There ‘s no doubt that Borough News is a striking and well laid out publication and the result of a lot of hard team work.

    Council’s have a statutory obligation to keep taxpayers informed and most choose to do this via a regular news sheet delivered to every home within it’s jurisdiction – which is why we also get a freebie from Hampshire County Council.

    As a public relations exercise ‘Borough News’ is now officially peerless but it is of course it is a PR award it has landed – not a press award.

    There are criticisms of council run free papers – and there is no bigger critic than Communities Secretary Eric Pickles who dubbed them ‘Town Hall Pravdas’ and restricted their publication frequency after concerns that municipal literature was passing itself off as independent journalism.

    “Our free press should not face state competition from propaganda on the rates dressed up as local reporting”.

    Council freebies take an unashamedly ‘pro’ view of council policy and performance and do not report opposition group views or include any right of reply for the public which is frustrating for groups in the community who find themselves at odds with the council on issues like development, parking, allotments, bin collections.

    There is a ‘credibility gap’. Publishing an unremitting stream of ‘good’ news stretches the audience’s credulity and may be counter productive.

    Effective communication depends on trust.

    Elsewhere council publications compete with a threatened local press for a diminishing pool of advertisers.

    This isn’t the case at Eastleigh where the council are simply trying to make Borough News self funding but the council did drop the Daily Echo as publishers of the Borough News and no longer places legal notices with them.

    Since then Echo circulation in the borough has dropped, there has been a cover price rise and the Echo Eastleigh office has closed.

    Borough News claims an impressive 52,000 copy circulation to every household in the Borough, which stacks up well against regional publisher Newsquest’s local titles.

    By contrast, In Eastleigh and Hedge End the Eastleigh edition of weekly freebie News Extra and Advertiser gets delivered to 27,000 homes; The Echo sells average 3,789 copies daily and Hampshire Chronicle shifts only 513 copies a week (figures Jicreg October 2013).

    Thing is no one chooses to have Borough News delivered so I wonder what proportion of people actually read it. When a public consultation into proposed changes to the council’s executive arrangements was published in the Borough News and delivered to 52,000 homes there were only 13 respondents..and I was one of them.

  3. Rosie
    November 25, 2013 at 2:49 pm

    Some useful information in there occasionally (eg re bin collections) but still has the usual Lib-Dem “propaganda” bias. eg Boasting of having, and promoting, “countryside” – which usually means local “country” parks like Lakeside. Whilst the true countryside is to be destroyed at break-neck speed in huge swathes (not nearer 2029) because Lib Dems think that is preferable to getting too close to neighbouring Council’s borders by building on sites far more suitable than our most natural green spaces! I’d like to see some boasting about how much brownfield land is being built on and is planned to be built on, or dilapidated properties being renovated by the Council – or even existing homes in “affordable” areas being bought by the Council in order to provide truly affordable housing, instead of spending on pet projects like the Ageas Bowl hotel ….. Great point made above re the publication being a PR award, not a good press award!

  4. November 25, 2013 at 3:59 pm

    Hampshire County Council freebie contains advertising which must help with the cost – might even pay for it all.

    • mm
      Eastleigh Xpress
      November 25, 2013 at 9:11 pm

      Yes, Borough News has some as well with the same intention – there are some council papers that were packed with ads and used to publish weekly!

  5. December 6, 2013 at 3:39 am

    It’s also interesting to note that the awards from this PR company were for its membership, nominated by its membership and voted for by its membership. Membership that the council pays for with local tax payers money.. Smell funny to you.? Bloody stinks to me.!

    A small and uninteresting fact that was not worthy of a mention in this report or in the Borough News, non Newspaper.

    So this really is an award for the best printed PR document by a member of the PR Membership. Hardly worth any copy in my book.!! Still someone has to run the council press releases now that the Echo will not do it anymore.

    Great work Borough News. A story worthy as contender for next years Press Award for Independant Local Journalism I am sure.

    In My Opioion Of Course.!!

    • mm
      Eastleigh Xpress
      December 6, 2013 at 9:55 am

      I think you’ll find Echo still take council press releases.

Comments are closed.