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Graham Norton and Aisling Walsh among Irish BAFTA winners

Graham Norton at the BAFTA Television Awards
Graham Norton at the BAFTA Television Awards

GRAHAM Norton, director Aisling Walsh and a BBC Northern Ireland programme about the Catholic Church were among the Irish winners at the BAFTA television awards on Sunday.

Norton picked up the award for Best Entertainment Programme for his acclaimed BBC One show, The Graham Norton Show.

The Cork-born TV presenter also hosted Sunday night’s prestigious ceremony at London’s Royal Festival Hall.

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Dublin director Aisling Walsh, who is best known for her 2003 feature film Song for A Raggy Boy, shared in the BAFTA victory for Best Mini-Series.

That award went to Room at the Top, the BBC show she directed about a young man in 1940s Yorkshire who attempts to make something of his life.

Northern Ireland was also represented with the BAFTA for Current Affairs going to The Shame of The Catholic Church, a BBC Northern Ireland/This World production produced by Sam Collyns, Alison Millar, Darragh MacIntyre and Seamus McCracken.

The BBC Two programme, presented by McIntyre, investigated the failure of the Catholic Church to deal with abusing priests in Ireland.

Featuring contributions from Irish writer Colm Toibin and Catholic Canon lawyer and commentator, the Reverend Thomas Doyle, the programme looked at the great power the Catholic Church once had in Ireland and explained how the Catholic faithful were too frightened to break the silence and report crimes perpetrated on young victims.

In another Northern Ireland-related win, popular HBO series Game of Thrones took the Radio Times Audience Award, which is voted for by viewers.

The series, which is filmed in Northern Ireland, saw off competition from second-generation Irishman Danny Boyle’s opening ceremony of the Olympics.

The BBC’s coverage of the London Olympics failed to win a single award at Sunday night’s event, which proved to be the shock of the night.

Other highlights of the ceremony included two acting BAFTAS for Olivia Colman, while Steve Coogan won the Best Male in Comedy award for Alan Partridge’s latest adventure, Welcome To The Places Of My Life and former Monty Python star Michael Palin was honoured with the BAFTA Fellowship.

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Steve Cummins
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Steve is the Irish Post's digital media & entertainment editor and looks after the paper's website and weekly entertainment supplement, Rí-Rá. Follow him @steve_cummins

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