17 December 2012
Congratulations to Cumbria ACF, winners of the 2012 Wilkinson Sword PR competition orqanised by the ACF PR Training Team.
The use of social networks and new media featured strongly in this year's entries and the Cumbria ACF PR team's use of Facebook gave them a narrow category win over Hampshire & Isle of Wight ACF, which ultimately led to them picking up the overall Wilkinson Sword Award.
Hants & IOW also received praise from the judges in the 'Best use of a website' and 'Best use of social networks or new media' categories, where they picked up two commendations and a category win for the 'Best media portfolio'.
Somerset ACF won the best newsletter category for their well-produced annual camp newsletter.
There were no awards in the Photography or PR Event categories.
Lt Col Steve Taylor, CO of the ACF PR Training Team said:
"It was not surprising to see the use of new media and social networks featuring this year and both Cumbria ACF and Hants & IOW ACF have shown how to do it really well. There is still some fear and reluctance in certain parts of the country towards using social networks in county PR activities but both these submissions showed how to do it effectively and responsibly.
"Cumbria ACF's Facebook page uses a 'group' approach to engage a wide audience - internal and external - and this allows a great deal of transparency which is very good practice. The group page also allows them to include downloadable documents and other easily accessible links which is an added benefit to users. I can see how this Facebook site works hard to engage such a wide audience and be very open and clear about the content it is delivering.
"Equally Hants and IOW are using a Facebook page very well and deserve their commendation.
"Back in 'old media' territory, Hants & IOW also showed good, consistent use of local press to publicise the county's activities to take the media portfolio category win.
"The Somerset ACF annual camp newsletter is a very nicely produced publication and showed good application of writing and design skills buy the authors. What made it a winner was the fact that new newsletters were produced several times, overnight, during annual camp and the circulation and distribution took ii to a very wide audience. It was a very strong entry and clearly involved a lot of dedication and effort by the Somerset PRO.
"Sadly their were no awards made in two categories: Photography and PR event. Surprisingly these categories drew a low level of entries and the submissions fell short of demonstrating a category winning standard.
"The level of commitment, effort and skill applied to all aspects of PR across the ACF remains undeniably high, which is a fabulous testament to those PROs and their teams who work so hard, as volunteers, to promote the organisation. Thank you, for all your hard work."
Overall winners of the Wilkinson Sword for PR Excellence
Best use of website
Commended - Hants & IOW ACF
Best media portfolio
Winner - Hants & IOW ACF
Winner - Somerset ACF
Best use of social network or new media
Winner: Cumbria ACF
Commended: Hants & IOW ACF
Best photography portfolio
Best PR Event