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Fairfax Ballarat print centre wins SWUG gong for newspaper excellence

Wednesday, 03 April 2013
By Print 21 Online Article
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Fairfax Media’s Ballarat print production site in Victoria has held on to its position as the darling of the Single Width Users Group (SWUG) awards, winning the gong for Excellence in Newspaper Production at the gala dinner event in Yeppoon on 24 March. 

The Ballarat site collected two major prizes at the event, repeating last year’s win in the Brissett Shield for best overall print quality (Bendigo Advertiser) and adding the Flint Group Shield for best coldset commercial publication (Rural Events Guide). Both winning entries were printed on a manroland Uniset 75 pressline.

In the category for best overall print quality on a double-width press, the APN Print site at Yandina on the Sunshine Coast – the host site of this year’s conference – claimed the first two places with its production of the News Mail (runner-up) and the Sunshine Coast Dailywhich was awarded the Norske Shield.

The successful team from the Fairfax Media print centre at Ballarat: (L-R) Steve Gross, Matt Hancock and Shayne West.

This year also saw the introduction of a new award category for Best Newspaper on Enhanced Stock (over 50gsm on both single and double width presses), reflecting the growing trend for publications to use better quality newsprint.

The inaugural winner in this category, which received the DIC Shield, was the Fairfax Media site at Mandurah in WA for its production of the Denmark Bulletin.

The SWUG committee also awarded the annual Apprentice of the Year prize to Nicole Clarke, a fourth-year apprentice at News Limited’s Chullora plant. Her prize, valued at $5,000, includes a tour of Australian newspaper print sites.

This year’s conference, held at the Mercure Capricorn resort at Yeppoon, drew about 170 delegates from 30 print sites around the region as well as suppliers and international speakers, with Sanat Hazra from The Times of India, giving a keynote presentation on strategic approaches to achieving excellence in newspaper production.

Over the course of two days, the conference covered a wide range of topics including new press technology, UV printing, web cleaning, roller maintenance, press chemistry and paper-making.

SWUG Annual Awards 2013 – results


Award Publication Print Site
Highly Commended Port Macquarie News Fairfax Regional Printers
(manroland Uniset 70)
Runner Up Hawke’s Bay Today APN Print Hastings (NZ)
(Goss Community)
Winner –
Brissett Shield
Bendigo Advertiser Fairfax Media – Ballarat
(manroland Uniset 75)


Award Publication Print Site
Highly Commended Tamworth Building Supplies Print Leader – Tamworth
(Goss Community)
Runner Up Journey Horton Media (QLD)
(Goss Community)
Flint Group  Shield
Rural Events Guide Fairfax Media – Ballarat
(manroland Uniset 75)


Award Publication Print Site
Highly Commended The West Australian WA Newspapers
(KBA Commander)
Runner Up News Mail APN Print – Yandina
(manroland Regioman)
Winner –
Norske Shield
Sunshine Coast Daily APN Print – Yandina
(manroland Regioman)

BEST NEWSPAPER ON ENHANCED STOCK (over 50gsm/SW & DW) – Category 4

Award Publication Print Site
Highly Commended Queensland Chinese Times APN Print – Toowoomba
Runner Up Australian Financial Review Fairfax Media – North Richmond
(manroland Uniset 70)
Winner –
DIC Shield
Denmark Bulletin Fairfax Media – Mandurah
(manroland Uniset 75)

Apprentice of the Year for 2013:

Winner:  Nicole Clarke from News Limited, Chullora, NSW


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