Belfast Telegraph

EastEnders sweeps board at awards

EastEnders was streets ahead as the big winner at the Inside Soap awards - scooping six gongs.

The BBC One show's impressive haul included the top prize of Best Soap, and the fifth consecutive win for Lacey Turner, who stars as Walford's Stacey Branning.

Coronation Street - soon to celebrate its 50th anniversary - landed four of the prizes.

Emmerdale's Danny Miller had two reasons to celebrate. He picked up the gong for Best Actor for his role as Aaron Livesy, as well as Best Dramatic Performance for the emotional scenes in which Aaron admitted to Paddy that he was gay.

Coronation Street star Michelle Keegan, who plays bolshy beauty Tina McIntyre, was awarded the Sexiest Female gong for the second year running, and Best Newcomer went to EastEnders' Ricky Norwood for his role as Arthur "Fatboy" Chubb.

Craig Gazey, who plays hapless butcher Graeme Proctor in Coronation Street, received the Funniest Performance gong, following last year's win for the late Maggie Jones.

He said: "It's a great honour to follow in the footsteps of last year's winner, the incredible Maggie Jones. Thank you to everyone who voted for me. The fact it's an award from viewers is very special. I keep my Best Newcomer Inside Soap award in the bathroom so that's where this one will be going."

The ITV1 soap also picked up the Best Stunt gong for the gripping siege, fire and explosion at the Underworld knicker factory.

Weatherfield's Alex Bain, who plays Simon Barlow, won his second Best Young Actor gong, while Waterloo Road was named Best Drama for the first time.

Neighbours beat Home and Away and Doctors to be named Best Daytime Soap while one of its stars, Ryan Moloney, was awarded the Best Daytime Star gong.

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