THE best of community journalism is being celebrated as part of Local Newspaper Week.
The scheme, which is run by the local newspaper industry and the Newspaper Society, aims to highlight the role played by newspapers in fighting for what is important to readers and bringing them up to date with the most important news for their area.
The Lancashire Telegraph has launched several campaigns following calls for change in East Lancashire.
The Turn The Lights On campaign followed the death of Burnley-born Mark Burgess on the M65 motorway.
Drivers told us they believed they might have avoided the aftermath of the accident had there been lights on the carriageway.
Support for the campaign was shown by MPs, motorists and Blackburn, Hyndburn and Ribble Valley coroner Michael Singleton, who wrote to the Highways Agency asking them to rethink the policy to turn the lights out for environmental reasons.
The Lancashire Telegraph’s ‘Slower Speeds, Safer Children’ campaign has called for 20 mph limits to be placed on all residential streets In East Lancashire.
It was launched following shocking figures showing Blackburn with Darwen Borough has the worst statistics for accidents in which children were killed or seriously injured in England.
In 2007 the paper launched its ‘Wasted Lives’ campaign for a tougher driving test regime and graduated licence scheme for young drivers after the death of 22-year-old Matthew Hannon in a speeding car on Blackburn’s streets.
The Government is currently consulting on whether to introduce a final version of a proposed scheme which would meet most of the Lancashire Telegraph’s demands.
And the paper helped raise £125,000 for the East Lancashire Hospice’s roof appeal.
Jake Berry, MP for Rossendale and Darwen, said: “Over the last four years I have had the privilege of campaigning with the Lancashire Telegraph on many issues. It is a fantastic and widely read local paper. It has helped me create thousands of apprentice-ships with our joint apprenticeship campaign, bringing investment into the town centres.
“We are extremely lucky to have such an outstanding local daily paper in East Lancashire.”
And the Lancashire Telegraph has also been nominated for the national award of best daily or Sunday newspaper at the Society of Editors Regional Press Awards.
The winner will be announced at a ceremony at the Lancaster London Hotel tomorrow.
Lancashire Telegraph Editor Kevin Young said: “Local newspapers are the pillar of any community and it is important to recognise their importance.
“At the Lancashire Telegraph we are passionate about campaigning for what matters to our readers and holding those in power to account. I am proud the paper has been recognised as one of the best in the country.”