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NTAs pay tribute to late Paul O’Grady who wins posthumous award

The National Television Awards has paid tribute to the late TV star Paul O’Grady, who won an award in the factual entertainment category for his show For The Love Of Dogs.

Before a montage from his career was played, host of the awards show Joel Dommett announced that they would be paying tribute to O’Grady and said: “Here at the National Television Awards we wanted to remember someone very special, the one and only Paul O’Grady.

“Nominated an astonishing 28 times for an NTA, his first nearly 30 years ago, his career came in many guises and no matter what he did, there was always kindness coupled with a unique sense of fun that won over audiences in an instance.”

Paul O’Grady funeral
Dogs at the Walnut Tree Pub in Aldington, Kent, as they wait for Paul O’Grady’s funeral cortege (Yui Mok/PA)

Later on in the show, Davina McCall announced that O’Grady had won in the factual entertainment category.

He was up against Clarkson’s Farm, Sort Your Life Out and The Martin Lewis Money Show Live.

Representatives from Battersea Dogs and Cats Home accepted the award and one of them said: “I would like to thank Paul, of course, and the ITV team… for shining a light on the care that we’re able to provide for the 100 or more dogs and cats that come to Battersea every week.

“I know that Paul cared deeply for each and every one of those animals.

“I think that something about their plight and their vulnerability really struck a chord with Paul. He often referred to Battersea as his second home.”

The comedian and TV presenter – who rose to fame on the nightclub circuit as the acerbic, platinum wig-wearing Lily Savage – died “unexpectedly but peacefully” in March at the age of 67, his partner, Andre Portasio, said in a statement.

O’Grady was hailed as a “trailblazer” for breaking into the mainstream broadcasting landscape with his alter ego and for his charity work around animals and Aids.