The groups performance scooped them 100,000 last night and a spot in the Royal Variety Performance in front of the Queen. The members of the Essex dance troupe were visibly stunned when the result of the public vote was announced, while runner-up Boyle put on a brave face, saying: The best people won.
Stumbling over his words, Diversity choreographer Ashley Banjo, 20, said: I was saying, 'Guys, second When you said our name ... honestly, Im going to wake up in a minute.
The group, which includes three sets of brothers, had put in a stunning performance, weaving in a cheeky reference to the judges buzzers by donning red caps to represent the buttons used to get acts off the stage.
Judge Simon Cowell said: If I had to give marks on that, that is the only performance tonight I would want to give a 10 to.
Saxophonist Julian Smith, 39, from Birmingham came third in the closely fought competition.
Diversity, whose ages range from 12 to 25, formed in 2007 and won a national dance competition the same year.
Throughout the shows run they elicited glowing comments from the judges and wowed the studio audience, but were never tipped as favourites for the prize.
Bookmakers avoided a potential multi-million pound loss with their victory, as Boyle, 48, from had attracted the lions share of the bets to win.
Her audition attracted millions of hits on YouTube and sparked an appearance on Oprah Winfreys television show.
Following her performance last night of I Dreamed a Dream from Les Miserables, the song that propelled her to fame, Cowell seemed to realise that Boyle would not win.
He told her: A lot of people said you shouldnt even be in this competition, that you werent equipped to deal with it. For what? For you to sit at home with your cat and say, 'Ive missed an opportunity. I totally disagree with that.
About 250 people in Boyles home village of Blackburn, West Lothian, crammed into the community centre for a big-screen showing of the talent programme. Centre manager Ralph Bell said: We were disappointed that she lost, but were still very proud of what shes done achieved. Shes definitely got a big future.
Among the other acts who reached the final were heart-warming father and son duo Stavros Flatley, Demetrios and Michalakis Andreas (nicknamed Lagi) Demetriou, from north London. Hollie Steel, 10, from Acrington Lancashire, put in a confident performance after breaking down in tears during the semi-final.
The other acts performing were London dance group Flawless, grandfather and daughter act 2 Grand John Neill, 76, and Sallie Lax, 12, from Doncaster, and singer Shaun Smith, 17, from Lichfield. Telegraph