During its ceremony on Tuesday (June 6) night, the 2023 British Soap Awards honoured entertainment professionals who passed away this year.
Actors and creatives involved with the biggest British soaps — Coronation Street, EastEnders, Hollyoaks, Doctors and Emmerdale — turned out for the star-studded event, hosted this year by television presenter and singer Jane McDonald.
After celebrating the talent shown in soaps this year, the ceremony turned to honour those who left us in 2023.
Before the in-memoriam video played, Jane said those who passed this year would "leave behind a legacy that will last forever". Among them was comedian, drag star and former British Soap Awards host Paul O'Grady.
Paul presented the awards between 2004 and 2005, which were held at the BBC Television Centre in London.
Fans joined in the tribute online, with one fan tweeting: "Nice touch adding the fabulous Paul O'Grady. X #britishsoapawards2023."
Another added: "Every time I see an awards show, show Paul O'Grady - I instantly cry and still can't believe he's gone #britishsoapawards2023 #SoapAwards."
"Well, that finished me when our darling #PaulOGrady appeared. #britishsoapawards2023," a third viewer tweeted.
"Seeing Paul O'Grady again still brings a lump to my throat. Dear me, he was one of a kind. #britishsoapawards2023," yet another fan chimed in.
The video ended with a clip of Paul hosting the awards and saying: "Win or lose, life would be a really boring place without you lot [soap stars]."
Other stars mentioned were Barbara Young (Coronation Street), Andy Devine (Emmerdale), Maria Charles (Coronation Street and Doctors), Harry Landis (Doctors and EastEnders) and Mona Hammond (shown below — EastEnders, Coronation Street and Doctors).
Fourteen awards were handed out across the two-hour ceremony at Lowry Theatre, Salford — with Coronation Street and EastEnders winning big.
The event took place on Saturday (June 3) and aired tonight (June 6) on ITV1 and ITVX.
Coronation Street received six gongs, taking home the most wins, including Best Single Episode for Ryan's acid attack.
EastEnders took home four wins, including the coveted Best Soap category, and Hollyoaks received two nods. Meanwhile, Emmerdale and Doctors scored one award each.
Coronation Street airs on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays at 8pm on ITV1 and streams on ITVX.
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