EastEnders has retained its crown as best of British at the nation’s premier soap awards.
The BBC One series, which recently caused controversy with its baby-swap storyline, beat stiff competition to win the Best Soap award for the fourth year in a row at the British Soap Awards.
Despite missing out on the top prize, Coronation Street won nine awards, compared with EastEnders’ total of four.
The dramatic live show that saw a tram crash on to the Weatherfield cobbles, filmed to mark the ITV soap’s 50th anniversary, won awards for Best Single Episode and Spectacular Scene of the Year. It also led to the plot that won Coronation Street this year’s Best Storyline – The end of the line for the Websters and the Dobbs.
Best Dramatic Performance was won by Jane Danson for her role as Leanne Barlow. Her screen stepson Simon, played by Alexander Bain, won the Best Young Performance award at the ceremony, which took place at Manchester’s Granada Studios.
Bill Tarmey, who bowed out of the soap after playing Jack Duckworth for 31 years, won the Lifetime Achievement Award and Best Exit gong.
Patti Clare, who plays eccentric Mary Taylor in Coronation Street, won the prize for Best Comedy Performance.
Michelle Keegan, Tina McIntyre in the soap, won the viewer-voted prize for Sexiest Female, for the third year running. It was also third time lucky for EastEnders’ Scott Maslen, who was named Sexiest Male again.
EastEnders picked up Best On-screen Partnership for Jessie Wallace and Shane Richie’s portrayal of Kat and Alfie Moon. Jessie was also named Best Actress.