The Telegraph Magazine

The Telegraph

You could have been shown any number of covers of The Telegraph Magazine with celebrities on them - from Michael Caine to Ncuti Gatwa, Sarah Ferguson to David Attenborough - but these three examples of why the glossy supplement for the Telegraph (distributed every Saturday in print) deserves to win demonstrate something very different. Total originality of thought and execution.

Editor Lisa Markwell, who has been in post for a year and a half, strives to provide the Telegraph’s one million-plus digital and print subscribers with content which will entertain and challenge them, to provide them with genuine talking points on subjects both new and familiar. So whether that is picking up on a missing persons case that has dropped out of the headlines or unveiling a previously unknown medical scandal, hanging out with the singular Tesla owners club or challenging the prevailing view of trophy hunting, the story is told in a compelling way, both in words and visuals.

The sensitive, complex cover feature ‘A boy named Sophie’ is a brilliant example. Sophie Ottaway trusted Jessamy Calkin and the Telegraph Magazine to share her experiences of being born male and surgically altered to be raised female - without her knowledge. It was truly jaw dropping, as was its impact. It generated the fifth-most subscriptions of any article in the past 12 months, myriad media requests and remarkably positive engagement from both existing subscribers and new audiences across the UK and beyond.

Markwell’s team starts every project by interrogating its potential for digital appeal while protecting the integrity of a prestige print product. Illustrations become animations, an interview with a maverick freeclimber includes embedded video, and much more. Jeanette Winterson reads aloud her ghost experiences; there’s behind-the-scenes footage of the cover shoot with Jamie Oliver; and a cover on air pollution comes to life with smog drifting over the heads of pedestrians. In the hands of writers such as Mick Brown and Celia Walden, interviews uncover rarely-found insights. Freddie Mercury’s lifelong best friend Mary Austin trusted Brown to be shown around Mercury’s home and belongings ahead of the Sotheby’s £40m sale; Sarah Ferguson revealed to Walden the real reason why she’ll always stick by Prince Andrew.

In our age, success can be measured by subscriptions and comments, and sometimes in more ephemeral ways. A fascinating deep dive into the world of Silicon Valley’s mysterious pronatalist movement genuinely ‘went viral’ thanks to a brilliantly original cover - ‘meet the elites breeding to save mankind’ became a meme around the world.

Producing a sparkling mix of features every single week is no mean feat, but the Telegraph Magazine shows how it can be done with just four ‘slots’. These are backed up with consistently strong and imaginative regular features across food, fashion, Q&As and columnists. That all this content, once dispersed across the Telegraph’s digital platforms, delivers high engagement shows that each and every element is produced to the very highest standards and as such deserves recognition.