A record 78 winners took home Print Futures Awards at a ceremony yesterday (20 July) at the House of Lords hosted by The Printing Charity (TPC).
The programme, now into its 15th year, recognises young people aged between 18 and 30 in the print and publishing industries, and rewards them with a grant of £1,500, with total grant spend this year totalling £117,000. Applications for this year’s awards, which kicked off in February, were also at a record 275.
Introducing the awards, TPC chief executive Neil Lovell said the programme was going from strength to strength, with entrants “from the Shetlands to Cornwall”, covering a range of disciplines.
Special recognition was given to graphic and media design student Costanza De Luca, who designed this year’s brochures, Iggesund Paperboard apprentice Georgia Irving and journalist Emily Collis. Irving was guest speaker at last month’s TPC AGM.
"We spread our net far and wide this year, promoting the awards through colleges, universities, trade associations and industry," Lovell told PrintWeek.
"Our reach this year has been incredibly diverse, from young people already working in the industry, including apprentices, to those training to join it. The awards event celebrated the winners’ success, as well as the passion and innovation in the UK creative industries, including print.”
This year’s TPC president, Baroness Brenda Dean, said that the awards had renewed her faith in the industry that it isn’t just full of “white male old fogies”.
Dean said: “You’re joining an industry that is incredibly important. An old one but with modern techniques. It’s great to have charities and companies in the sector all working together, because you can’t have anything without working together.”
Former TPC president Lord Guy Black said: “To re-phrase Mark Twain, reports of the death of this industry are greatly over-exaggerated. We produce sales of £14bn.”
Black added that this year’s winners were split 50/50 in terms of gender and that he would be “informing the BBC” of this fact.
TPC chairman Jon Wright paid tribute to Terry Ulrick, a former TPC trustee and founder of the Print Futures Awards, who died in May.
The awards are sponsored by The Book Trade Charity, Unite the Union and Saxoprint, who printed this year’s brochures. Judges included TPC’s Jane Allardice, Unite’s Louisa Bull and Picon chief executive Bettine Pellant.