Catriona Stewart

Liam Hendry's murder was appalling but, while a shattering incident for his family, it could have gone largely unnoticed in a city of high crime rates.

I was working the morning after the incident when all police would say was that a teenager had been killed in a road traffic accident. However, I went out knocking doors and found Liam's cousin, who I built a rapport with. She introduced me to Liam's mum and dad, William and Margaret, who told me the background details of what had happened. Securing the sit down interview with the family was a long process of trust building and ensuring I was available to them at all hours, weekdays and weekends. They were offered money by other publications to talk but I built a relationship with them and they agreed to be interviewed by me exclusively. I went to every day of the two-week trial of Liam's alleged killers and reported daily on the court case. When our editor was off I would act up to cover the desk. The editor's annual leave coincided with the second week of the court case but I was adamant I would not miss it. This meant editing the paper and managing our team remotely from my laptop in the corridor of Glasgow High Court, holding conference during morning break and frantically running in and out to deal with queries. Of course, work pressures were nothing compared to what William and Margaret were suffering and speaking to them while sitting in Liam's bedroom, an untouched shrine to him, was a deeply moving experience. They told me the piece was a fitting tribute to their boy, and that was all I had hoped for. I ran a week-long series in the Glasgow Times digging in to the picture of cocaine use in the city. I wanted to speak to someone who had first hand experience of the effects of the drug but this turned out to be no easy feat. It took weeks of calls, knockbacks and sweet talking before securing the interview with William but he was an open and engaging case study who gave a human face to a largely invisible issue. Homeless Project Scotland has been making headlines across the Scottish media by giving prominence to the issue of hunger and poverty in Glasgow. No media had gone out and spent a whole night embedded with the charity, which I wanted to do in order to have a close up view of the work of volunteers and the people using the soup kitchen. This has been one of the best read stories on the HeraldScotland site this year and prompted huge political interest with cross-party MSPs visiting the soup kitchen and pledging support as a result.