On Monday night, the radio equivalent to the Oscars or the BAFTAS took place when the 27th annual Sony Radio Academy Awards were held at London’s Grosvenor House Hotelhosted by Radio 2’s Chris Evans. The event was covered simultaneously by a live webcast hosted by Richard Allinson and Margherita Taylor.
Some of the more unlikely winners came from the commercial radio sector where Beacon Radio, Kerrang 105.2 rocks and Fun Kids won 3 of 5 most prestigious station of the Year Awards.
Nicky Campbell and Shelagh Fogerty won the blue riband 'Breakfast Show of the Year Award' for 5Live Breakfast while the 5Live station had additional success with 5 other gold awards including The Speech Awards for Simon Mayo and Mark Kermode and various awards for their Olympic coverage. Christian O’Connell picked up Absolute Radio’s first Sony Gold for The Live Event Coverage Award.
BBC Radio Scotland’s grand dame of broadcasting, Edi Stark, carried off The News Special Award and first-time nominee, Radio 5 live’s Gavin Lee, was awarded The News Journalist of the Year.
Chris Evans took time out from hosting the evening’s proceedings, to win Golds for The Music Radio Personality of the Year and The Entertainment Award and for the first time Radio 3 was proclaimed UK Station of the Year, triumphing over Classic FM and Radio 1.
Two of London’s most ‘opinionated’ broadcasters found favour, with LBC’s Nick Ferrari anointed The Speech Broadcaster of the Year, leaving Radio 4’s Evan Davis with Silver; and Vanessa Feltz of BBC London 94.9 winning her first Sony Gold for The Speech Radio Personality of the Year.
On a night when so many of Speakers Corner's favourite personalities were winners, it was also great to see some familiar faces presenting the awards with many other awards hosts, facilitators, after dinner speakers and comedians stepping up to hand out the awards to the lucky winners. These included the likes of Kirsty Gallacher, Christine Ohuruogo MBE, Donal MacIntyre, Frank Skinner, Polly Toynbee, Kate Thornton, Jon Culshaw, Krishnan Guru-Murthy and Kate Adie OBE