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Northumbria graduates score hat-trick at Royal Television Society awards

2nd March 2015

Three graduates from Northumbria University have won Royal Television Society (RTS) Awards.

Ben Cameron walked away with the Rising Star award, while James Beavers and Beth Kennett both scooped awards in the student categories at this year’s North East and Borders regional awards ceremony.

There was also success for Northumbria’s Humanities department, as the BBC won Best Factual Production for A King’s Speech – a documentary based largely on research by Professor Brian Ward.

Since graduating from Northumbria’s BA (Hons) Animation course in 2013, Ben Cameron has launched a successful career as a 3D/CGI animator, working for YourFilm, who nominated him in this category. He has worked on several key client accounts and has been instrumental in winning new business contracts for the company.

James Beavers (Animation) and Beth Kennett (Media Production) who both graduated last year, won the Best Student Animation and Best Student Open awards respectively.

This year’s accolades build on Northumbria’s success last year, which saw Media Production graduate, Richard Powell Smith, secure first prize in the Student Best Fiction Production category.

Professor Gilbert Cockton, Head of Media and Communication Design at Northumbria University said: “The RTS industry awards are testament to the talent that is being nurtured within the student media community at Northumbria.

“We maintain close links with industry and have recently hosted visits by Channel 4 and ITV, creating valuable opportunities for our students to gain insight into the current world of media and television.

“For our students and graduates to be part of today’s industry news, and at such an early stage of their career, is an incredible achievement.”

Best Factual Production winner, A King’s Speech, was based largely on research conducted by Brian Ward, professor in American Studies at Northumbria and a world-leading authority on the US civil rights movement. In the early 1990s, Brian discovered long-lost footage of King’s impromptu 1967 speech in Newcastle and later wrote the first authoritative account of a historic visit that the documentary is helping to bring back to public awareness. The documentary was produced by BBC North East in 2014.

The awards ceremony, which took place at the Hilton Newcastle Gateshead on Saturday 28 February was hosted by BBC Breakfast presenter, Steph McGovern. The Student Awards are judged separately from the main regional awards, and the winner of each category goes forward to the Royal Television Society (RTS) National Student Awards held in London later this year.

To see the full list of award winners, visit the North East and Borders section of the RTS website at

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