Ex-chairman of Journalist’s Charity heads up media awards judging panel

Laurie Upshon

With the deadline fast approaching for this year’s Midlands Media Awards, organisers at Birmingham Press Club have announced that the chairman of the judging panel will be former ITV executive Laurie Upshon.

Laurie (pictured) spent 35 years in mainstream journalism before setting up Upshon Media Limited in 2005.

Most of his career was in television where he was Controller of News and Operations for ITV Central and a member of the board of Central Independent Television plc. He is a fellow of the Royal Television Society and was awarded the Society’s top accolade, the annual Baird Medal, for an outstanding contribution to broadcasting.

He has won further national and international awards for both programme making and the introduction of new working practices. He was a member of the Newsworld advisory board and a founder member of the ITV Heads of News group, which he chaired for eight years.

Laurie has lectured regularly on news issues at several universities and is a former visiting examiner on the Broadcast Journalism MA course at University College, Falmouth.

He has also worked as a broadcasting consultant in Ghana, Moldova, Georgia, Abu Dhabi and South Africa, where he advised the national broadcaster SABC.

Laurie started his career in regional papers before moving to Fleet Street and was a former board member of the Association of British Editors and a former chairman of the Royal Television Society’s Midland Centre.

He was a member of the Screen Commission for Central England and founder chairman of the Media Archive for Central England. Laurie is a Trustee and former chairman of The Journalist’s Charity.

Press Club chairman Llewela Bailey commented: “Laurie is one of the region’s most experienced, and respected, journalists and we are delighted to have him on board as chairman of the judging panel.”

Deadline for entries has been extended until 4 October. They should be submitted on memory sticks and forwarded to Press Club director Kay Cadman (email: at Core Marketing, The Exchange, 19 Newhall Street, Birmingham, B3 3PJ. Envelopes should be marked private and confidential.

The awards, sponsored by HSBC UK with support from Bareface, the digital marketing and web design agency, are now taking place on Friday, 23 November. They are being held at Edgbaston Stadium, one of Birmingham’s premier leisure venues, to acknowledge the achievements of the region’s journalists, photographers, broadcasters and bloggers.

Press Club chairman Llewela Bailey said: “The awards, now in their 17th year, showcase the tremendous professionalism of media specialists throughout the East and West Midlands and clearly demonstrate that their talents are amongst the best in the country.”

Kate Epworth, HSBC UK’s Head of Communications, said: “We are delighted to again be sponsoring the Midlands Media Awards – a much-anticipated and highly-contested highlight of the Press Club calendar, celebrating the region’s continued high quality of journalism.”

Full details on how to enter the awards are on

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