Professor Brian Cox and Miranda Hart were the stars at the Royal Television Society Awards, notching up double wins.
The pop star turned science poster boy was rewarded for turning his shows about the solar system into a mainstream hit at the highbrow awards event.
Another double winner was Miranda Hart, who has won huge acclaim for her BBC Two sitcom Miranda, which is soon to be moved to BBC One. She collected the prize for best comedy performance and her show landed the award for best scripted comedy.
And she thanked TV presenters Ant and Dec – winners of the best entertainment performance prize – for helping her to enjoy the evening, staged at London’s Grosvenor House Hotel. “Because we’re on the BBC table we’re not allowed to drink champagne so I was dared to ask Ant and Dec for theirs and they gave it to me.”
Cox was rewarded as best presenter and his BBC Two series Wonders Of The Solar System took the science and natural history prize. The astrophysicist – who had a first taste of fame as a member of chart act D:ream – thanked the BBC for allowing an academic to become a presenter.
Jim Broadbent was named best actor for his role in the Channel 4 drama Any Human Heart, while the best actress prize went to Vicky McClure for her performance in C4’s This Is England ’86.
The best soap prize went to EastEnders, beating Coronation Street in its 50th year. The X Factor was named best entertainment programme, while Louie Spence’s Pineapple Dance Studios was named best features and lifestyle series.
Despite huge critical acclaim and audience, ITV1’s Downton Abbey was left empty-handed, losing out on the drama series prize to BBC One’s Sherlock.