In 1973 the coolest car was the Austin Allegro (brown, with velour trim and square steering wheel), the Wombles were born, Golden Wonder launched Ringos, women were allowed on to the floor of the Stock Exchange, and Russell Hobbs, Renault, Sony and Guinness scooped top prizes at the inaugural Campaign Press Awards. Three decades later, our most prestigious and experienced panel of judges ever gathered to debate this year's crop of entries. So this book is a celebration of those entries that managed to impress our toughest ever jury. But it is also a celebration of the 30th anniversary of the Campaign Press Awards, an anniversary fittingly symbolised by the pearl.

To look across the span of work produced over the past 30 years is to take a brief history lesson, not only in the development of some of our most famous brands but also in the changing craft of creating for the press medium. In his Essay on page 44, Robin Wight, the chairman of our 2003 jury, argues that we have lost the art of writing long-copy ads.

"Would David Abbott get a job in advertising today?" Well, any retrospective could not fail to throw up the bend of press and poster creativity towards a common central, wordless, ground: the proster as Trevor Beattie calls it on page 42. On page 46, though, some of today's creatives debate whether we should really mourn the passing of long copy or celebrate the shifting vibrancy of the dictating culture.

What remains true, despite such debate, is the overall standard of the best work and its vital role in maintaining the health of the print medium.

Great creativity in press advertising can only enhance the environment in which it appears and add to the reader's enjoyment. Campaign is proud to have been associated with this process for the past 30 years.