The Wincott Awards for 2017

by Tony Major
Carolyn Fairbairn

The annual Wincott awards lunch was held in The Old Ballroom of The Mansion House in the City of London, in the presence of The Right Worshipful The Lord Mayor Locum Tenens, Alderman Dame Fiona Woolf DBE DL. Following welcoming remarks from Dame Fiona and Wincott Foundation Chairman Sir Richard Lambert, Carolyn Fairbairn, Director-General of the Confederation of British Industry, addressed an audience comprising the award finalists and their guests and a number of business, media and public sector leaders.

And the winners were:

Wincott Financial Journalist of the Year – Sarah O’Connor, Financial Times

Sarah O’Connor and Daniel Wincott

The judges said:”Sarah writes with a calm and confident style, making arguments which pass the common sense test – for example that carers should be paid more because they are one of the few trades that cannot be replaced by robots, or the under-reported facts of the decline of female participation in the US labour force. Her argument that the emergence of the gig economy requires us to rethink what companies are for was another highly original piece.”.

Personal Finance Journalist of the Year – Tom Wilson, Which? Money

Tom Wilson, Daniel Wincott

The judges said:”Tom Wilson’s careful and confident investigation into the charges and practices of St James’s Place, the country’s largest investment advice firm, was a model of its genre. Judges also liked his warning to investors about binary options and his “Novice’s Guide” to Vanguard’s new investing platform.”

Young Financial Journalist of the Year – Paul McClean, Financial Times

FT Grad trainee. Paul McClean.

The judges said:”People will always remember the news, even if they struggle to recall the number, that no fewer than 759 EU treaties have to be reworked as a result of Brexit. It was Paul’s hard digging in Brussels that uncovered this remarkable statistic. He also detailed the unfathomable complications of airline route rights after Brexit and condemned misleading reassurances from IAG, British Airways’ parent, that it could continue to be both a British and an EU airline.”

Young Financial Journalist of the Year – Callum Williams, The Economist

Daniel Wincott, Callum Williams

The judges said:”Callum Williams delivered a resoundingly authoritative survey of death taxes, along with an accomplished counter-intuitive explanation of why the UK economy didn’t do so badly as forecast last year. His take on the becalming of UK productivity was equally inventive, citing a neat survey of the large number of fax machines still chugging away in back offices.”

Audio Journalism of the Year – Dominic O’Connell, ‘Today’, BBC Radio 4

Dominic O’Connell, Daniel Wincott

The judges said:”Judges were impressed by his polite persistence, conciseness and composure, briskly extricating a rigidly-programmed Facebook executive from her enthusiasm about a modest expansion of the UK office to more pointed questions about the group’s approach to taxation. Other highlights were a survey of Northern Ireland businesses worried by Brexit and an edgy interview with an Anglican bishop about the church’s investment policy. O’Connell’s standard of interview and explanation, day in day, out is admirable.”

Journalism of the Year in the UK Nations and Regions – Mark Casci, The Yorkshire Post

Mark Casci, Daniel Wincott

The judges said:”Marc Casci of The Yorkshire Post never loses sight of his audience and their perspective on UK events. In his entry, he tapped a rich vein interviewing visiting grandees and getting their input on regional issues, such as the Metro Leeds corridor and Yorkshire devolution.”

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