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Last Updated: Friday, 9 May, 2003, 03:53 GMT 04:53 UK
Ross scoops radio awards
Jonathan Ross
Jonathan Ross hosts a Saturday show on BBC Radio 2

Jonathan Ross has picked up two major prizes for his BBC Radio Two show at the prestigious Sony Awards.

The star, who also hosts a hit TV chat show, won best entertainment presenter and the special 2002 award for achievements over the year.

BBC Radio 4's Today programme presenter John Humphrys received the lifetime achievement award while Radio 4 was named national station of the year.

The Sony Awards is the biggest ceremony in the UK's radio industry. The prizes were handed out in London on Thursday.

The judges said Ross had "speed of thought, natural wit and ability to transform even the most mundane of thoughts into entertaining broadcasting".

7 - BBC Radio 4
3 - BBC Radio 2
2 - BBC Radio 1
2 - BBC Five Live
2 - Belfast City Beat

He triumphed over Stephen Fry, Ricky Gervais and Christian O'Connell in the category for best entertainment show.

But O'Connell, who hosts a show on London station XFM, beat Terry Wogan to be named the UK's best radio breakfast presenter.

O'Connell, who also hosts an early-evening TV show on Five, formerly Channel 5, was named ahead of Wogan, who has eight million listeners per day.

Fry left empty-handed despite three nominations for his Incomplete and Utter History of Classical Music on Classic FM.

Radio 4 is the civilising influence in this country - I think it is the most important institution that we have
John Humphrys

Radio 4, with its prize for best national station, prevented Radio 2 from taking the title for the third year in a row.

Radio 4 was the "civilising influence" in the country, Humphrys argued.

"I thank Tony Blair and Gordon Brown and all those people who choose not to answer the questions - because if they answered the questions where would people like me be?"

He joked that his lifetime achievement award should be renamed the OFA - "the Old Farts Award".

"I've survived for 45 years and for that I am enormously grateful," he said.

Christian O'Connell (left) with Tony Blackburn
O'Connell (left) was presented with his award by Tony Blackburn

In the categories for smaller stations, FM103 Horizon, based in Milton Keynes, repeated last year's victory in the category for best station with fewer than 300,000 listeners.

Cornwall's Pirate FM and BBC Radio Ulster also won station awards.

Radio 2's Paul Gambaccini hosted the event - and won the award for best music broadcaster.

Mark Murphy of BBC Radio Suffolk beat national names like Edward Stourton, Lyse Doucet, Julian Worricker and Victoria Derbyshire to be crowned best news broadcaster.

In the speech categories, phone-in host Stephen Nolan from Belfast City Beat won two prizes to add to one he received in 2002.

Nicholas Parsons receiving the Comedy Award from Kathy Lette
Nicholas Parsons picked up the comedy prize for Just A Minute

BBC Radio 3's eclectic Late Junction triumphed in the daily music programme section.

And former Sun journalist Dominic Mohan won best single music show for a special on The Who for Virgin Radio.

Saga Radio was named digital station of the year while digital comedy and drama station BBC7 won the station sound award.

BBC Radio 4 led the nominations, with 26 mentions in 28 categories.

Last year, John Peel was given a lifetime achievement award while little-known DJ Terry Garoghan of Brighton-based Southern FM beat Ross and Gervais to the entertainment prize.

The Sony ceremony not only honours the best in presenting and music, but also news, community broadcasting and dramas.

Sony Radio Awards 2003: Winners
08 May 03  |  Entertainment
Ross wins TV entertainer award
19 Mar 03  |  Entertainment
Comedy trio up for radio awards
27 Mar 03  |  Entertainment
Digital radio takes off
08 May 03  |  Entertainment
Radio award for 'unrivalled' Peel
02 May 02  |  Entertainment
Sony Awards 2002: The winners
03 May 02  |  Entertainment

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