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Clare Balding to Receive The BAFTA Special Award at the Arqiva British Academy Television Awards

28 April 2013
Clare BaldingBBC

BAFTA has today announced that Clare Balding, television presenter and journalist, will be presented with the Special Award at this year’s Arqiva British Academy Television Awards on Sunday 12 May at the Royal Festival Hall.

Presented in honour of Richard Dimbleby, this year’s Special Award recognises the year’s most important personal contribution on screen in factual television and is being given in appreciation of her incredible dedication to presenting across entertainment and sporting events. Last presented in 2006 to Jamie Oliver, the Award’s previous recipients have included Jon Snow, Andrew Marr, Jeremy Paxman and Kate Adie.

Andrew Newman, Chairman of BAFTA’s Television Committee, said: “Clare's body of work over the last 13 years speaks for itself, but it was through her expert coverage of the London 2012 Olympic Games and Paralympic Games that Clare became a national treasure, who with her warmth and charisma helped bring the country together as we celebrated in Team GB and Paralympic GB's success. She is a trusted and intelligent live presenter with an ability to transcend genre, and we’re delighted to honour her contribution to television at this year’s BAFTA ceremony on 12 May.”

Since Clare made her television debut in 1995 introducing highlights at Royal Ascot, she has gone on to present some of the most prestigious events in the world, including five Olympic Games, four Paralympic Games, Horse Racing on Channel 4 and Crufts. Her expert knowledge across a wide range of topics has made her a trusted and admired television personality, proven by her coverage of the London 2012 Olympics and Paralympic Games.

On receiving the award, Clare Balding said: “ I am in complete shock, I can’t believe I’ve been given such an extraordinary honour and I am totally delighted. I may not stop smiling until the night”

The Arqiva British Academy Television Awards will be hosted by Graham Norton at the Royal Festival Hall, London, and broadcast on BBC One on Sunday 12 May.

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About BAFTA’s Special Awards for Television

BAFTA presents Special Awards for Television at its annual Television Awards ceremonies in honour of either Alan Clarke (presented for outstanding creative contribution to Television), Dennis Potter (Writers Award) or Richard Dimbleby (for the year’s most important personal contribution on the screen in factual television).


The British Academy of Film and Television Arts is an independent charity that supports, develops and promotes the art forms of the moving image by identifying and rewarding excellence, inspiring practitioners and benefiting the public. In addition to its Awards ceremonies, BAFTA has a year-round Learning & Events programme that offers unique access to some of the world’s most inspiring talent through workshops, masterclasses, lectures and mentoring schemes, connecting with audiences of all ages and backgrounds across the UK, Los Angeles and New York. BAFTA relies on income from membership subscriptions, individual donations, trusts, foundations and corporate partnerships to support its ongoing outreach work. For further information, visit