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RTS announces winners of Television Journalism Awards

The Royal Television Society (RTS), the forum for television and related media, has announced the winners of the RTS Television Journalism Awards 2013-2014.

The Royal Television Society (RTS), the forum for television and related media, has announced the winners of the RTS Television Journalism Awards 2013-2014.

The awards, for news and current affairs, recognise creative and excellent journalism by organisations whose broadcasts are received in the UK and by the agencies which supply UK news broadcasters. This year saw journalists, broadcasters and agencies competing in 17 categories for a coveted Royal Television Society Award.

Among the winners was ITV News at Ten’s Mark Austin who picked up the prize for Network Presenter of the Year for the second year running. Channel 4 News’ Matt Frei was named Television Journalist of the Year while Alison Holt (pictured) from BBC News was awarded Specialist Journalist of the Year.

The RTS Jury said of Holt: “Our winner consistently delivered stories which were agenda-setting, policy shifting and politically important – while treating people at the heart of the stories with patience, knowledge and understanding.”

Mstyslav Chernov (pictured) of The Associated Press was named Young Talent of the Year. Chernov, 29, joined AP as a regular freelancer in May 2014, originally working as a researcher in eastern Ukraine. On his second day working solo as a multiformat journalist, an airstrike hit the town of Shizhne and his footage of the aftermath focused with impressive detail on the collapse of a single damaged house. Two days later, he covered the downing of Malaysian Airlines flight MH17 in eastern Ukraine. He arrived at the crash site at dusk and filmed in an area of intense fighting, providing AP’s first images quickly via his iPhone before sending full coverage later. Chernov’s reporting on the circumstances surrounding the crashed plane played a central role in AP’s text coverage of the event.

Sky News received the award for News Channel of the Year, ITV News at Ten won Daily News Programme of the Year and Scoop of the Year went to BBC Northern Ireland for Spotlight – A Woman Alone With The IRA.

“The Scoop award recognises exclusive, original journalism that makes a wide impact. The winning entry made headlines on both sides of the Atlantic and has triggered parliamentary and governmental action. At the heart of it was one woman waiving her right to anonymity to do what virtually no republican ever does on camera, speak out against the IRA,” commented the RTS Jury.

The Judges’ Award, which is given at the discretion of the Jury Chairs, was presented to the Al Jazeera English journalists Peter Greste, Mohamed Fahmy and Baher Mohamed, while the Lifetime Achievement Award went to former ITV News science and medical editor Lawrence McGinty.

McGinty has practised his craft for over 40 years, the RTS Jury explained. “He began in academic publishing, moved to New Scientist Magazine, before venturing into broadcasting. He has won awards from the broadcasting industry and the science and medical communities. The hallmark of his work has been communicating often complex subjects in a way that will engage and inform audiences. He retired from full-time work last year but already has been tempted back onto the airwaves.”

The RTS Television Journalism Awards are chaired by Stewart Purvis CBE, Professor of Television Journalism at City University. The awards ceremony, hosted by, took place on Wednesday 18 February at the London Hilton, Park Lane.