RTS Northern Ireland Programme Awards

RTS Northern Ireland Programme Awards

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Friday, 16th November 2018

Red Production Company’s Belfast-set series Come Home was named best Drama at the RTS Northern Ireland Programme Awards in mid-November.

Danny Brocklehurst’s drama for BBC One starred Christopher Eccleston and Paula Malcomson as a couple whose marriage collapses and threatens to destroy their children’s lives.

The Best Scripted Comedy award went to Lisa McGee’s Channel 4 sitcom, Derry Girls, which was made by Hat Trick Productions. 

No Stone Unturned, which tells the story of the unsolved murders of six men in a bar in Northern Ireland during the 1994 World Cup, won the Current Affairs award for Fine Point Films. It was directed by the renowned US documentary film-maker, Alex Gibney.

Belfast production company Fine Point Films picked up a second award (with Cyprus Avenue Films) for 66 Days about Bobby Sands and the 1981 hunger strike, which was named Best Documentary. The Specialist Factual Award went to Erica Starling Productions and Ronachan Films for their film, Leonora Carrington: The Lost Surrealist, which examines the life and work of the English-born Mexican artist.

BBC Northern Ireland’s television news service, BBC Newsline, won the News Coverage award for Kevin Magee’s investigation into paedophile hunters. BBC Northern Ireland also picked up the Interactive award for its virtual reality film, 1943 Berlin Blitz.

“The high quality of this year’s entries was truly impressive and hugely reflective of Northern Ireland’s dynamic creative community,” said RTS Northern Ireland Chair Kieran Doherty.

Casting director Carla Stronge was awarded the Brian Waddell Award for her outstanding contribution to the local television and film industry. Her credits include all eight seasons of HBO’s Game of Thrones, for which she has won two Emmys, and the recent BBC Two factual drama, Doing Money, about slavery in the UK.

“Waddell Media was the first place I did work experience, so I am very proud to be the first recipient in the award’s new name,” said Stronge.

Jannine Waddell, Chair of the awards committee, offered “special congratulations to Carla Stronge for being awarded the newly re-named Brian Waddell Award in memory of my father”. Brian Waddell, who died in 2009, founded Belfast factual production company Waddell Media and was a former head of programmes at UTV.

“We are extremely proud of Carla’s casting achievements for some of the best television and films in the world, which has helped to put Northern Ireland on the global map,” added Jannine Waddell.

The RTS Northern Ireland Programme Awards were held at the Metropolitan Arts Centre, Belfast and hosted by Bronagh Waugh, who recently starred in ITV drama Unforgotten.

BBC Northern Ireland, Northern Ireland Screen, Channel 4, UTV and the Belfast-based post-production facility, Ka-Boom, supported the awards.

Northern Ireland winners

The Brian Waddell Award

Carla Stronge



Come Home

Red Production Company for BBC One


Scripted Comedy

Derry Girls

Hat Trick Productions for Channel 4



What Makes You Tic?

Nice One Productions and Hindsight Productions for BBC Three


Features/Factual Entertainment

Rachel Allen: A Cook’s Adventure

Big Mountain Productions for Channel 4 


Specialist Factual

Leonora Carrington: The Lost Surrealist

Erica Starling Productions and Ronachan Films for BBC Four



66 Days

Cyprus Avenue Films and Fine Point Films


Current Affairs

No Stone Unturned

Fine Point Films


News Coverage

BBC Newsline: Paedophile Hunter Investigation




Joe All Alone: Home Alone

Zodiak Kids Studios for CBBC


Original Music Score

Rocky Ros Muc

Below The Radar



1943 Berlin Blitz


All photography by PressEye

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Red Production Company’s Belfast-set series Come Home was named best Drama at the RTS Northern Ireland Programme Awards in mid-November.