Archant-owned newspaper takes top spot in this year’s EDF South West Media Awards.

We’ve always suspected it, but now it’s official: The North Devon Gazette is the best free weekly newspaper in the South West.

The Archant-owned newspaper took top spot in this year’s EDF South West Media Awards, held at the Somerset County Cricket Ground in Taunton yesterday (Thursday).

The Gazette beat other titles from Devon, Cornwall, Somerset, Avon and Wiltshire, including fellow shortlisted Archant titles The North Somerset Times and Midweek Herald.

The judging panel said: “The Gazette delivers a healthy mix of hard and soft news and features, with reporters jumping in lifeboats and out on late-night police poaching patrols to deliver great content.

“There’s good off-diary reporting and some stand-out scoops, from tip-offs and clever FOI requests.”

Editor Andy Keeble and reporters Tony Gussin, Sarah Howells and Elliot Anderton were presented with the award by Paralympic fencing hopeful Dimitri Coutya.

Andy said: “We’re incredibly proud to see our efforts recognised by independent industry peers.

“I’m fortunate to work with a great team of reporters who love what they do and get a kick out of breaking great stories and producing super newspapers.

“We try to keep things relevant, informative, interesting and fun. We really feel that the Gazette – along with other Archant free titles in the South West – is constantly raising the standards for free newspapers across the country.

“The paper is well liked and well respected and the relationship with our readers and advertisers has been crucial to our success.”