British Soap Awards: EastEnders wins as Jane McDonald hosts

LONDON-EastEnders has won the top prize at the British Soap Awards, while Coronation Street took home the most trophies. Jane McDonald hosted the awards in Salford on Saturday night. She replaced former This Morning presenter Phillip Schofield after he quit ITV last week. Accepting the best British Soap Award alongside the EastEnders cast, Perry Fenwick, who plays Billy Mitchell, said: “From the bottom of our hearts, honestly, we are thrilled to bits.” The drama also clinched the top leading performer award for Danielle Harold’s portrayal of Lola Pearce-Brown, a character who recently died following a brain tumour. Harold dedicated the prize to everyone who had been directly affected by brain tumours, adding: “Their time has been so precious to them and even more to me and I can’t thank all of you enough for helping me.” The soap also won villain of the year and best young performer at the ceremony at the Lowry Theatre in Salford Quays. Coronation Street won a total of six prizes including best single episode and scene of the year for the show’s depiction of an acid attack. Ryan Prescott, whose character Ryan Connor was injured in the attack, said there had been 330 acid attacks in Manchester in the last year. “It was amazing to be part of something that could bring a light to something so sensitive and something that is happening way more than we actually know,” he said. Hollyoaks won best storyline and the show’s head of casting was awarded the Tony Warren Award, previously known as the outstanding achievement award (off screen). The award is named after the creator of Coronation Street, who died in 2016. Doctors actors Chris Walker and Jan Pearson won the best on-screen partnership award and Emmerdale’s Mark Charnock, who plays Marlon Dingle, took the outstanding achievement award.

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