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Wednesday, March 17, 1999 Published at 12:42 GMT


Breakfast toast for Vaughan

Big celebration: Johnny Vaughan, newsreader Phil Gayle and Kelly Brook

The Big Breakfast host Johnny Vaughan hit back at his show's critics as he scored a double victory at a prestigious TV awards ceremony.

The show won best Channel 4 programme and Vaughan was named ITV, Channel 4 and Channel 5 personality of the year at the Television and Radio Industries Club Awards in London.

Recently the Big Breakfast was criticised after a leaked memo reportedly showed how most of new presenter Kelly Brook's jokes were scripted for her - and writers were being advised to avoid "obscure" words like "intrepid" and "satirical".

But Vaughan said at Tuesday's ceremony at London's Grosvenor House Hotel: "They have congratulated us today, and that is a moral victory."

Unconcerned by reports

[ image: Trevor McDonald: Won newscaster of the year]
Trevor McDonald: Won newscaster of the year
Brook - a 19-year-old model - took over from Denise Van Outen in February. She said she had not been concerned by the reports.

"I have been there a month and I knew there were going to be stories. A lot of it was inaccurate and we just laughed about it."

She also added the award was for a whole year of The Big Breakfast. "This award is also for Denise Van Outen and Melanie Sykes and everybody else with The Big Breakfast."

ITV Evening News presenter Trevor McDonald received the best newscaster prize from last year's winner, Channel 5's Kirsty Young.

He made light of a row between ITV and Channel 5 over an ad campaign for the rescheduled 5 News - with the slogan: "The 6pm news on Channel 5. Repeated at 6.30pm on ITV."

Poking fun at Channel 5

[ image: Katie Derham: Rising reporter won best new TV talent]
Katie Derham: Rising reporter won best new TV talent
McDonald said: "I seem to be promoting Channel 5 news more than I am promoting ITV these days."

Adding ITV's news revamp was the first in 32 years, he said: "They have had about three in 32 months. I am looking forward to Kirsty at the new time of 6pm, delivering an even bigger audience to the ITV news at 6.30pm, when they all switch over."

ITN's media correspondent Katie Derham - who previously reported for the BBC's Film 98 - was named best new TV talent.

Comic actress June Whitfield said she was "thrilled and honoured" to win a special award for her work in TV over her 40-year career.

BBC winners were led by Lord Robert Winston, who collected the best factual or science programme for The Human Body.

He said: "It is fantastic the BBC has its faith in science. It is important to so much that's going on that we understand science."

Success for BBC Radio

[ image: June Whitfield: Received a special prize]
June Whitfield: Received a special prize
BBC personality of the year was Jill Dando, while sports presenter was Sue Barker. She said it was her second TV award, adding: "This equals the total I won in my 14 years of tennis."

Radio 5 Live's Breakfast Programme, hosted by Julian Worricker and Victoria Derbyshire, won radio show of the year, while John Peel was radio personality of the year. As well as being Radio 1's champion of alternative sounds, he has found a new audience as host of Radio 4's Home Truths programme.

BBC One sports quiz They Think It's All Over was TV comedy of the year while costume drama Vanity Fair won best BBC programme of the year.

In other awards, model Melinda Messenger won satellite and digital TV personality for her work on music station VH-1 - beating the Duchess of York who was also nominated for her chat show on Sky TV. Discovery won satellite and digital channel of the year.

Rising star Nick Robinson picked up the award for best ITV programme. The 12-year-old stars alongside John Thaw in wartime drama Goodnight Mr Tom.

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