Ed Miliband and Sir David Attenborough honoured at broadcasting awards
The former Labour leader’s podcast was given a prize.
Sir David Attenborough, Ed Miliband and Claire Foy are among the winners of the Broadcasting Press Guild awards.
The former Labour leader was honoured for his podcast with Geoff Lloyd, called Reasons To Be Cheerful, which was named BPG podcast of the year.
Sir David’s Blue Planet II was named best documentary series, while Foy was named best actress for her portrayal of the Queen in The Crown, which won the award for best online first/streaming production.
Foy’s win comes just days after it emerged she was paid less than her co-star Matt Smith for the big-budget series.
Woman’s Hour presenter Emma Barnett was named radio broadcaster of the year following her interview with current Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn during the 2017 election campaign, when he stumbled over childcare figures.
Wolf Hall author Dame Hilary Mantel’s series of BBC Reith Lectures, exploring the challenges and legitimacy of historical fiction, was awarded the radio programme of the year prize, while Channel 4’s first series of The Great British Bake Off was named best entertainment/factual entertainment.
The awards, held at the Theatre Royal Drury Lane, honour television and radio work commissioned in the UK and are voted for by people who write about TV and radio for a living.
Catastrophe star Mark Bonnar was named best actor for a string of high-profile roles in shows including Apple Tree Yard and Eric, Ernie and Me.
Line Of Duty was named best drama series, while its creator Jed Mercurio was named best writer and BBC drama Three Girls, about the victims of grooming and sexual abuse in Rochdale, was named best single drama/mini-series.
BBC Four’s Detectorists was named best comedy while The Trip To Spain, starring Steve Coogan and Rob Brydon, won the award for best multichannel programme.
Chris Packham’s Asperger’s and Me was honoured with the best single documentary prize.
The BPG award for innovation was presented to Channel 4 for its latest advances in championing diversity both on and off screen.
These include initiatives such as Spotlight on Directors and diversity throughout its commissioning – in programmes such as Ackley Bridge, The Last Leg and its 50 Shades of Gay season – and in its advertising.
The citation said: “Channel 4 has built on its pioneering Paralympics coverage to embrace the wider community and has demonstrated a first-in-class commitment to its public service broadcasting remit”.
The annual Harvey Lee award for an outstanding contribution to broadcasting was presented to the children’s television producers Biddy Baxter and Edward Barnes, in special recognition of Blue Peter, which celebrates its 60th anniversary this year.
The citation said: “For creating the ‘new’ Blue Peter in the early 1960s alongside the late Rosemary Gill. The involvement of its audience was ground-breaking, giving every child the opportunity to make a valuable contribution to the programme, to become involved in charity fund-raising and win a coveted Blue Peter badge.
“Blue Peter unleashed the power and potential of children’s television and 60 years on has created some of its most memorable moments.”
Caroline Frost, chair of the BPG, said: “It’s been an extraordinary year in entertainment, not just in the quality on-screen but in some of the controversies and scandals that have been uncovered away from it – and the British broadcasting industry has not gone un-marked.
“One thing we have to do today is give recognition to the BBC women, and all those who have put their heads above the parapet in pursuit of fair treatment, not just for themselves but for all women across the business.”