PR experts have shown a deft golden touch after scooping a prestigious UK-wide award – the fourth major accolade for their work with a renowned wind energy company.
Scottish public relations agency, Holyrood PR, in Edinburgh, was among a handful of PR firms from north of the border represented at the PRmoment awards, with three separate nominations.
Staff from the nine-strong agency were delighted to make the stage at a glittering ceremony in Manchester to collect the sought-after Community Engagement Campaign of the Year.
The gold award recognised the PR agency’s work with ‘responsible developer’, Banks Renewables, which has a number of proposed wind farm sites across Scotland. It is the fourth major PR award in 18 months for the partnership between the PR agency and the renewables firm.
Scott Douglas, co-founder and director of the public relations firm, based at Bonnington Bond in Edinburgh, said: “We’ve had an extremely successful 18 months winning many diverse PR awards.
“Those have recognised our successful PR campaigns ranging from restaurant and hospitality PR to successful public relations for sports tournaments and crime prevention initiatives.
“But throughout this golden period, our most rewarding and most recognised work has been for community engagement, in partnership with Banks Renewables.
“The Banks team are brilliant to work with and our success is only really possible because of their commitment to being so hands-on and transparent with the communities where they have planned developments.
“In each case we partner with the Banks team on the ground to explain to local communities the likely impact and positive benefits delivered by a wind farm to their area.
“That lets us clearly explain the long-term social, business and environmental benefits of the wind farm. And it helps give a voice to the supporters of wind energy, who can often be drowned out by vocal and organised minority of protestors.”
The highly-respected PRmoment Awards were set up to celebrate excellence and last week’s ceremony recognised and rewarded outstanding campaigns in the UK – including gold for Holyrood PR’s campaign around the proposed Bandirran Wind Farm in Perthshire.
It followed the Edinburgh PR agency’s success at the CIPR Pride awards in October 2014. There, Holyrood PR collected three gold and two silver PR awards, including a gold for the Bandirran Wind Farm campaign.
That came after a double gold CIPR success in October 2013 for the PR at another wind farm, Quixwood Moor in the Scottish Borders.
Then Holyrood PR and Banks Renewables were recognised for campaign planning & measurement and for business & corporate communication.
Mark Dowdall, environment and community director at the Banks Group, which has its headquarters in Durham and employs more than 400 people, said: “We are delighted that our work to communicate clearly with communities has now struck gold for a fourth time.
“We’d also like to offer our congratulations to the Holyrood PR team and our community and project team who have worked together to develop a positive and fruitful partnership.
“There is no doubt that wind energy is one of Scotland’s greatest potential resources, but it is still a new sector and faces many hurdles and challenges in communities where wind farms are being considered.
“Of course, every site and every community is different, but one thing that unifies them all is the need to listen to local feedback and for clear, simple and effective communications to ensure local people and businesses can make the most informed decisions.
“The experienced Holyrood PR team has worked well with the Banks team in helping to explain the many benefits of wind farms to local communities.”
The judges at the PRmoment awards said of the Holyrood PR and Banks Renewables win: “This entry blew the judges away with its engagement with the community, it had clear objectives that achieved targets.”
Holyrood Partnership is an award-winning public relations and social media agency which specialises in creating integrated PR campaigns for clients across a range of sectors.
More information on the Holyrood Partnership can be found at www.holyroodpr.co.uk.
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