Celebrations in the North East as professionals honour outstanding public relations practice

The best public relations campaigns, practitioners and organisations in the North East were announced this evening (Friday 5 December) at the 2014 CIPR North East PRide Awards, which took place at The Biscuit Factory, Newcastle, attended by over 200 people and hosted by BBC Newcastle radio presenter and stand-up comedian, Alfie Joey.

The regional CIPR committee recognised the achievement of Shaun Campbell who received the coveted Communicator of the Year title.

Shaun has campaigned for the past seven years for the first world's first black professional footballer, Arthur Wharton, whose playing career began at Darlington to be celebrated. Shaun took Wharton's story to the world, persuading everyone from Rio Ferdinand to Andy Cole to Theo Walcott and stars such as Stevie Wonder to support the campaign. In October this year a 16ft statue of Arthur Wharton was unveiled at the National Football Centre in Burton.

Chris Taylor MCIPR, Chair of CIPR North East
It was an easy and unanimous decision to give Shaun Campbell the CIPR North East Communicator of the Year award for 2014. The inspiring campaign that he has led for the past seven years to get some long-overdue recognition for Arthur Wharton has finally paid off in spectacular style with the statue of Arthur – the first black footballer ever to play professionally in the UK, being unveiled at the National Football Centre. His use of traditional and social media, complete refusal to take no for an answer, and absolute refusal to give up is an inspiration to us all.
Chris Taylor MCIPR, Chair of CIPR North East

Also on the night, Cool Blue and OPR were the big winners each picking up 3 Gold Awards. Cool Blue also won five silver awards and amongst OPR accolades was the award for Outstanding Public Relations Agency of the year.

Judges commended OPR for ingraining their “brand and values throughout the consultancy with the Ocademy running year round for staff development, the Opprenticeship scheme offering entry into the industry for graduates, and an annual Oway Day for team bonding.”

Judges credited Cool Blue for “showing impressive knowledge of their region” and “creating heightened awareness through small nudges, as opposed to dictating behaviour change”, with the results “proving clever tactics can win over big budgets.”

The award for Outstanding In-house Team of the year went to Nexus who took home two golds on the night. Overall 13 different PR organisations from right across the region won gold awards.

Stephen Waddington MCIPR, CIPR President and ‎European Digital and Social Media Director, Ketchum PR
The public relations profession is in good shape in the North East. Our agencies, councils, hospitals, transport operators and businesses are pioneers in citizen engagement using both traditional and new forms of media. The PRide Awards provide the opportunity to showcase and celebrate their work. It’s fantastic to have the opportunity to reflect on the last 12-months and celebrate the excellent work that is being delivered in the region.
Stephen Waddington MCIPR, CIPR President and ‎European Digital and Social Media Director, Ketchum PR

Full Gold Award winners from the 2014 CIPR North East PRide Awards:

  • Corporate and Business Communications Campaign: Go Digital Newcastle, Cool Blue Brand Communications
  • Internal Communications Campaign: Nexus Moving Forward, Nexus
  • Community Relations Campaign: Open Kitchen for Castlegate Shopping Centre, We Do Brand Communications
  • Public Sector Campaign: Hartlepool - A Vision for the Future, DTW & Hartlepool Borough Council
  • Low Budget Campaign: Traverse14 - Annual Travel Blogger Conference, NewcastleGateshead Initiative
  • Healthcare Campaign: Keep calm and look after yourself, NHS North of England Commissioning Support
  • Consumer Relations Campaign: Walks of Life - celebrating 90 years, Cool Blue Brand Communications
  • Best Use of Media Relations: Mind the Savings Gap, Admiral PR & Marketing
  • Integrated Campaign: Durham's Heritage Campaign, Visit County Durham in partnership with Stark Hartley Atkinson
  • Best Use of Social Media: Lane7, Quay2 Media
  • Best Publication: Your Homes | Coast & Country Magazine | November 2013 edition , Press Ahead
  • Best Use of Digital: BIMCrunch - modelling a new media space, O PR
  • Best Event: Dr. Martens Newcastle store launch, O PR
  • Regional Campaign of the Year: Make Tracks, Cool Blue Brand Communications
  • Outstanding Freelance Practitioner: Adrienne Hunter
  • Outstanding Young Communicator: Anne-Marie Bailey MCIPR, r//evolution
  • Outstanding Small Consultancy: We Do Brand Communications
  • Outstanding In-House Public Relations Team: Nexus
  • Outstanding Public Relations Consultancy: O PR
  • Best Use of Research, Planning, Measurement and Evaluation: Your Homes | Coast & Country Magazine | November 2013 edition, Press Ahead

Further information on the Awards’ winners, including Silver winners and case studies, will be published after the results announcement via the CIPR North East PRide Awards website.

Notes to editors

Notes to editors

About the Chartered Institute of Public Relations (CIPR)Founded in 1948, the Chartered Institute of Public Relations (CIPR) is the Royal Chartered professional body for public relations practitioners in the UK and overseas. The CIPR is the largest membership organisation for PR practitioners outside of North America. By size of turnover and number of individually registered members, we are the leading representative body for the PR profession and industry in Europe.

The CIPR advances professionalism in public relations by making its members accountable to their employers and the public through a code of conduct and searchable public register, setting standards through training, qualifications, awards and the production of best practice and skills guidance, facilitating Continuing Professional Development (CPD), and awarding Chartered Public Relations Practitioner status (Chart.PR).