IFTA TV awards: ‘Derry Girls’, ‘Young Offenders’ among winners

Broadcaster Shay Healy also received a lifetime achievement award at the ceremony

Broadcaster Shay Healy received a lifetime achievement award at the IFTA Gala Television Awards on Thursday night.

Mr Healy received the award, the highest honour bestowed by IFTA, for his contributions to television and entertainment in Ireland for the last 55 years.

Healy is best known as the songwriter who composed Ireland’s winning entry in the 1980 Eurovision, What’s Another Year, and for his role as the host on the chat show Nighthawks from 1988 to 1992.

Presented by comedian Jason Byrne, the ceremony took place at the RDS Concert Hall.


Northern Irish Troubles comedy Derry Girls won the Comedy award, in a category which included The Young Offenders, Bridget and Eamon and Mrs Brown’s Boys.

Sharon Horgan won the award for Female Performance in a category which included Cathy Belton (Red Rock), Seána Kerslake (Can't Cope Won't Cope), Saoirse-Monica Jackson (Derry Girls) and Hilary Rose (Young Offenders).

The Young Offenders' Chris Walley, who plays Jock Murphy in the comedy, scooped the Male Performance award, beating Seán McGinley, Chris Newman, Brendan O'Carroll, and Tommy Tiernan for the prize.

Dancing with the Stars

RTÉ’s Dancing with the Stars won in the Entertainment category, seeing off competition from Brendan O’Connor’s Cutting Edge, Ireland’s Got Talent and The Tommy Tiernan Show.

Dermot Bannon’s home improvement show Room to Improve won in the Factual category, where it was up against Creedon’s Shannon, Hector Central, and Schizophrenia: The Voices in My Head.

TV3’s Red Rock won best soap or continuing drama, while Gogglebox Ireland was named best reality TV programme.

The RTÉ Investigates programme Nightmare to Let won in the Current Affairs category, which also included BBC NI Spotlight – The Nama Tapes: Corruption, Claire Byrne Live and The Tonight Show.