Ffion Lewis

Media Wales

My first entry details how an incredible small-knit community rallied around a family after their house crumbled around them in a freak explosion with a mother and two young children trapped inside. I reported live from the scene and followed it through to multiple other pieces - including the first interview with mum Jessica. This entry was published around the second anniversary of the explosion and recounts their horrific ordeal while also speaking to the wider community about its impact. Our ongoing relationship meant they felt comfortable enough to allow us to enter the wreckage of the property as well as photograph the children for the first time. I spoke to the family, tracked down members of the community who were first on the scene, and interviewed local businesses that are funding the house rebuild. I do not believe this piece would be possible without my ongoing relationship with the family. This piece was featured in The South Wales Evening Post, as well as the front cover and leading story of the Western Mail weekend magazine. It was viewed online 20,632 times.

My second entry is a feature on the growing epidemic of knife crime in Cardiff that highlights the extent of the problem through the lens of those whose lives have been utterly devastated by these crimes. This piece gave them the opportunity to tell their story, while also emphasising the extent of the problem. This was compiled over the course of several weeks and required extensive research to track down relevant people affected - from victims to families, to bystanders. This piece has been the cornerstone of my reporting of knife crime in the city and has allowed me to build relationships with those impacted and widen my reach. This piece was used as a special report in the South Wales Echo and was featured in HoldTheFrontPage. It was viewed online 10,607 times. My final entry is an interview with a man whose father took his own life as a result of the UK’s euthanasia laws. This story came about after I discovered a group protesting to change the law. Through researching some supporters I discovered Gareth Ward’s story about his father Norman. Norman took his own life after a devastating cancer diagnosis. Gareth is calling for laws around euthanasia to be changed. This article demonstrates how a wider national news story can often be illustrated through individual lived experiences. Compiling this article required an emotional interview with Gareth and research into current euthanasia laws as well as the campaign to change the law. It was a timely piece as a woman in the UK had been arrested that week for helping a parent to end their own life. This was published in the South Wales Echo as well as on WalesOnline where it was read 11,218 times. I have chosen to submit these entries because I feel they show I am a versatile reporter and are strong examples of the integral part regional journalism plays in Britain’s media landscape.