WMW to launch £1,000 prize for students in Wales

Journalism students in Cardiff will have the chance to compete for a £1,000 cash prize, a high-performance driving experience day and a two-week work placement at some of the UK’s top motoring publications.

Launched by Welsh Motoring Writers in memory of John Arfon Edwards, one of the group’s founder members who passed away in 2014, the prize will be open to students at Cardiff University’s School of Journalism taking the automotive journalism module.

Cardiff’s unique Automotive Journalism module provides in-depth knowledge and skills for the next generation of transport and business writers.

Students on the course are invited to submit a piece of work from their course to the judging panel for the award. The deadline for entries is April 3; judging will take place in April with a presentation at the end of May.

Tim Holmes, senior lecturer at Cardiff School of Journalism, said: “This generous and multi-faceted prize from Welsh Motoring Writers will support students who have a passion for writing about motorised transport in its many aspects.

"I am enormously grateful to the group for their endorsement of Cardiff's course, which aims to provide a comprehensive overview of the past, present and future of the global automotive industry.”

The John Arfon Edwards Memorial Prize is supported by Porsche Cars GB, which is part-funding the award, and providing a day’s high-performance driving in its cars at Silverstone for the winner.

Haymarket Media Group has agreed to give the winner a two week work placement, providing the successful student with the opportunity to hone their skills at What Car?, Autocar and Pistonheads.

Mike Orford, head of PR at Porsche GB, said: “We are happy to support this prize, in memory of John Edwards. Encouraging the development of the next generation of motor journalists is a worthwhile endeavour, as well as a fitting tribute to John's life working in this field.

“We hope that the allure of an exciting session at the Porsche Experience Centre at Silverstone, along with an invaluable work placement at Haymarket, will help to attract as many entries as possible."

Jim Holder, editor of What Car? and Autocar, said: "At Autocar, Pistonheads and What Car? we have a rich tradition of offering work experience and employing and bringing on bright new talents. We see it as an essential part of what we do; it brings in fresh ideas, new energy and allows us to strive to nurture writers to our standards.

"In particular, this initiative by the WMW sets a standard that many organisations could and should aspire to. Above all else, any Group should be judged by how it seeks to promote the future of the industry it represents, and this initiative deserves wide support for investing in the future of what we all love doing."

WMW chairman Huw Thomas added: “Encouraging new talent in our field of journalism has been an idea discussed for some time within the Group. We wanted also to do something in memory of founder member, first treasurer and honorary life member, John Edwards.

“Combining both in a memorial prize was an ideal way forward. Fellow members, friends and family alike are delighted at such an outcome, and the great thing is we know John would be too.”

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Liam Bird Liam Bird

I'm Liam Bird, a freelance Motoring Writer based in the South Shropshire Marches. I currently write car reviews and road tests for a number of regional lifestyle magazines and newspapers which are distributed throughout Cheshire, Herefordshire, Shropshire, Staffordshire, Worcestershire, most of Wales and beyond.

As a member of the Welsh Group of Motoring Writers I'm as happy behind the wheel of a super-mini as I am in the latest super-car. I have press accreditation with most of the major motor manufacturers, meaning that as well as always being on the look out for further commissions, I always have a number of cars arriving each month ready to review.

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