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The founder of The Lichfield Blog has been shortlisted for a prestigious media award. Ross Hawkes – who started the site in January 2009 – has been nominated in the Online Journalist of the Year category in the Midlands Media Awards. He will now face journalists from across the region at a glittering ceremony at the ICC in Birmingham on May 13. Ross said:
“It’s really surprising to have reached this stage of the competition. I’m up against some fantastic journalists and people I’ve worked with during my career so I know the calibre of people I am up against. But just being in the final is fantastic and makes the hard work of The Lichfield Blog worthwhile.”
The Lichfield Blog has grown rapidly as a site and now provides regular news and information from people living in Lichfield, Burntwood and the surrounding areas. But, as Ross points out, the website is still put together by a mixture of goodwill and good people. He explained:
“I never imagined The Lichfield Blog would achieve anything like it has in such a short period of time. People like Philip John, Nick Brickett and Paul Groves helped transform The Lichfield Blog into what is today. “We’re now eternally thankful to the many contributors who put time and effort into writing articles and helping to keep the site ticking over. The Lichfield Blog is still a voluntary operation run by people in their spare time who have to fit it around full time jobs and what money we do make through advertising is invested into running costs and safeguarding the site’s future.”

13 replies on “The Lichfield Blog journalist shortlisted for media award”

  1. Best of luck to Ross – you’ve worked incredibly hard on this wonderful site over the last year and it would be nothing without you hammering away at the keyboard and badgering the police and council for scoops every day of the year! 

  2. Congratulations Ross. The copy and pasting of press releases is a soul-destroying task and your unwavering commitment to the old CTRL+V is to be commended.


  3. Thanks Joe – shame you weren’t on the judging panel. You’d have witnessed the items that were submitted and could have made an informed judgement.

    It’s never been said that The Lichfield Blog is a bastion of journalism where every word is award-winning (primarily because the site is purely volunteer driven, but don’t let that get in the way of bashing us), but then neither are any of the media outlets out there. Yes, we throw press release stuff on (and if the media even did that regularly round here there wouldn’t been a place for this site anyway, but that’s another debate) but as a journalist by trade there’s some stuff on here that has been produced through hard work and good old-fashioned reporting, pieces that I’m proud of. I do apologise if I cannot commit a 9-5 working week to The Lichfield Blog, but if you find someone who can, point them in our direction.

    You never mentioned which category were you in by the way Joe?

  4. Thanks for the support, Barry. As I say, the shortlist was decided by a panel including respected journalists who have held senior positions. They clearly enjoyed our stuff. But to be honest (and this will sound corny), awards aren’t why people muck in on The Lichfield Blog; they do it because they enjoy it.

    And that is why Joe R is entitled to his opinion. But while there’s a Barry Scott who does seem to enjoy what we do then that will do for me.

  5. Joe: You took that out of context. If you read it clearly you’ll see I mentioned that Ross tries to actually find the scoops every day of the year, rather than sitting on his ass like most ‘media’ folk around here. Not that there are scoops to be got, every day of the year.
    Still, we must be doing something right to have our own little trolls – if we were that shit, you wouldn’t find the effort to come here and pick at the seams.

  6. A great achievement Ross …and the team! The Lichfield Blog is a brilliant platform for local news and a great outlet to voice our views on issues that concern us…Long may it continue! :) Best of luck at the awards and well done! 

  7. Just wanted to say how proud I am of my husband, you work very hard on this site and do it in your spare time. Really impressed that you have been nominated, you deserve it !!
    All my love
    ‘the wife’ xx

  8. Thoroughly deserved nomination for all sorts of reasons…I’ve decided not to go off on a rant about the Midlands media scene, instead I’ll focus on the fact that the Lichfield Blog has become a quality and invaluable local source of information at a time when the city is being poorly served by others in this respect.

    That is down to the hard work of Ross, Philip and Nick, who all have demanding “day jobs” to hold down and devote hours of their free time to keeping the blog active – “free” being the crucial word.

    The Lichfield Blog doesn’t have the resources of the vast majoerity of organisations nominated in each of the categories at the MMA, yet it consistently punches above its weight.

    Good luck Ross. The nomination is a triumph, a win would be deserved recognition for your professionalism and commitment.

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