THE LymeOnline website has been commended in the national newsawards 2020, celebrating the best in news media print, technology and business innovation.
The Lyme Regis-based website was listed as commended in the Independent Community News Network (ICNN) Community Website of the Year category, with judges describing the site as “a great example of home grown local journalism”.
The winner of the category was Birmingham Updates with the Island Echo, based in the Isle of Wight, being highly commended, and LymeOnline commended along with Brighton and Hove News, Dorset Biz News and The Lincolnite.
The LymeOnline website was launched by Lyme Regis Media Ltd. in January 2018, with editor Francesca Evans creating the site and continuing to manage and update it on a daily basis, along with her father and veteran local journalist Philip Evans MBE.
Attracting about 8,000 users a week, the site offers the most comprehensive news coverage of the Lyme Regis area, with traditional news, sport and entertainment articles accompanied by weekly video news bulletins, podcasts, photo galleries, blogs on a wide variety of subjects, local history and information, a local business directory and more.
The website launched a special coronavirus platform in March to bring readers the latest information on the virus and where they can find support.
It also publishes a digital version of the LymeOnline newspaper – the printed version of which has been temporarily put on hold due to the effects of the coronavirus pandemic, but is due to relaunch in August.
Editor Francesca Evans commented: “I had very limited experience in website design and management before we launched LymeOnline in January 2018, so the past two and a half years have been a huge learning curve but something I’ve really enjoyed.
“We have put a great deal of work into developing the site and building up our audience figures, so being commended in the newsawards 2020 is such a great reward for all the hard work.
“In particular, this is a very welcome boost for us after the challenges of the past three months. Thanks to the support of our readers and grants from Dorset Council and the Google News Initiative, we are hopeful we have made it through the worst of the crisis.
“We are now looking forward to returning to our new and improved office later this week and our printed newspaper relaunching in August.”
LymeOnline also entered the ICNN Community Newspaper of the Year category and Francesca was nominated for Young Achiever of the Year, but these categories were among those not judged due to lockdown restrictions being implemented shortly after applications closed.
Winners of the five categories which were judged will be invited to collect their awards at next year’s ceremony in London, as this year’s was cancelled.
You can find out more about the newsawards and view all winners at www.newsawards.co.uk