Industry award marks editorial team effort...

Deeside Piper and Mearns Leader editor Mike Rankin with the industry award.
Deeside Piper and Mearns Leader editor Mike Rankin with the industry award.

The Leader and Observer editorial team have shared in a major industry accolade presented at the annual Johnston Press Awards night.

Editor Mike Rankin travelled down to Leeds last Thursday for the event, held to celebrate media and commercial success within the company.

Mike also edits the Deeside Piper, which was runner-up in the hotly-contested Title of the Year Small Weekly 2013 category - with top spot going to one of the Johnston Press English titles based in Bournemouth.

Mike, who took over joint editorship in January last year, is based primarily at the Leader office in Stonehaven and heads up a team of four reporters who work on the two titles and their respective editions - the Donside Piper and Kincardineshire Observer - all part of the Angus County Press division (ACP).

He said this week: ‘‘Obviously I’m delighted, but this is very much a whole team award which reflects their hard work, ability, enthusiasm and loyalty in 2013.

‘‘Leader and Observer reporters Rachel Campbell and Lee McCann have worked closely with Andrew Douglas and Jon Hebditch (who left last week), based at the Piper office in Banchory, and all four share equally in this success.

‘‘There are many challenges within the industry today, not least the demands of balancing digital and print journalism, and we have never been busier.

‘‘However, as a team we punch well above our weight, and appreciate the recognition of our peers.’’

ACP group editor Brian Stormont said: “The Deeside Piper has consistently been one of our best performing titles across Scotland in the past year.

“This award is richly deserved and is recognition of the hard work the team has been putting in.”