ITV’s Lucy Meacock to present £4,000 investigative journalism award

ITV presenter Lucy Meacock is to present a new award giving the best new investigative journalists a chance of winning a £4,000 cash prize.

Reporters hoping to uncover corruption and wrong-doing now have just under a month to enter the inaugural Ray Fitzwalter Award.

The prize, launched in honour of the former World In Action editor, aims to recognise the best investigative journalism outside London and will be judged by a panel including ITV’s Controller of Current Affairs Tom Giles and Channel 4’s Head of News and Current Affairs, Dorothy Byrne.

As well as the cash prize – to be partly spent on an investigation during 2018 – the winner will get the opportunity to be mentored by experienced investigative journalists.

The award, sponsored by the University of Salford, Channel 4, ITV, and the Bureau of Investigative Journalism, is open to early career journalists working in any medium and based in the UK but outside the capital.

Nominations must be in by February 21st and shortlisted candidates will be invited to an awards ceremony at the University of Salford’s MediaCityUK campus on 19 April 2018 hosted by Lucy Meacock.

Lucy, who presented BAFTA-winning programmes on Hillsborough and an investigation into the Cockle pickers in Morecambe Bay, said: “It’s vital we encourage the investigative journalists of the future. It takes vision, courage and endless determination to succeed in this field.

“They will be the eyes and ears we all need to make sure our public institutions are working properly, the brave reporters who will hold our politicians and business leaders to account. Who judges the judges? Who polices the police? It is a crucial role in any society.”

The award was launched last year by Hollywood director, Paul Greengrass, during the University’s Nations and Regions Media Conference in memory of Ray Fitzwalter, who died in 2016.
Ray chaired the Nations and Regions Media Conference for many years while also serving as a Visiting Professor at the University of Salford.

Bury-born Ray was responsible for the investigation that ended the career of Home Secretary Reginald Maudling, as well as covering the slaughter in East Pakistan that led to the birth of Bangladesh and commissioning a series of documentaries on the Birmingham pub bombings.

Beth Hewitt, Director of Nations and Regions Media Conference at the University of Salford said: “We are delighted to be working with ITV, Channel 4 and the Bureau of Investigative Journalism in supporting the next generation of talented investigative journalists.

“The importance of investigative journalism within our society should never be underestimated and it is absolutely appropriate that the Nations and Regions Media Conference is encouraging and fostering emerging investigative journalists.”

Click here for details of how to enter.