Our Wellington, clearly!

James Burgess | March 19, 2018

Our Wellington — Tō Tātou Pōneke is Wellington City Council’s seasonal newsletter. We love the way the council presents information clearly and gets the tone and presentation right for a diverse audience.

Sample pages from the newsletter

Our Wellington — Tō Tātou Pōneke won the People’s Choice award in the latest WriteMark Plain English Awards. At the time, editor Cass Hesom-Williams said:

Our Wellington — Tō Tātou Pōneke is delivered to every household in Wellington City, so it’s important the content is user-friendly and appeals to a broad audience.

Using plain English is one way to make sure the information we’re sharing is compelling and easily understood by as many people as possible, whether we’re encouraging people to attend an event or asking for feedback on a plan.

We aim for our quarterly magazine to be like the city — attractive, progressive, and easy to get around. Feedback from readers shows our efforts are appreciated, which is very satisfying.

Now Cass has been featured in Wellington newspaper The Dominion Post.

Photo of article in Dominion Post

In the article, Cass shares some great thoughts about writing Our Wellington, such as thinking about her audience:

The person reading it could be a new arrival to the city who’s still learning English; a busy, sleep-deprived parent; or someone who’s not able to leave the house a lot — I have to think about this when I’m writing.

And on the impression plain English makes:

…if you think using business jargon or complicated words makes you sound clever, remember Albert Einstein’s advice: “If you can’t explain something simply, you don’t understand it well enough.”

Well said Cass! Tautoko!

Insights, tips, and professional development opportunities.