PROGRAMMES with Catholic connections have won all the major awards in the first ever "religious television" competition of its kind. Subjects covered range from the controversial the death of Bobby Sands — to the noble — a profile of Cardinal Hume.
Unattended by the razzamatazz that usually surrounds such events — though the prestige value of the awards is high — the results were announced by the chairman of the panel of judges, Sir Huw Weldon, over a buffet lunch at Lambeth Palace last Tuesday, The panel of four judges, which included, apart from Sir Huw, the Managing Director of Border Television, Mr James Bredin, authoress and broadcaster, Mrs Monica Furlong, and the Dean of King's College. London. Rev Richard Harris, had to select just four winners from a total of 39 entries. All the final decisions were unanimous.
The open award for the best programme "distinguished by a creative insight into the religious dimension of life". worth £500, went to Robert Fielding for the programme "Basil Hume, OSB", which he both wrote and produced.
The runner's up prize went to Bill Nicholson for the programme he produced for the Everyman series entitled "Garabandaf: After the Visions'', which dealt with the experiences of a Spanish girl who claimed to have ecstatic visions of the Virgin Mary.
The current affairs award, for a programme "examining an issue of event in the contemporary world in the light of religious beliefs," was won by Cohn Cameron, a producer with the BBC, for a programme dealing with the ethics of hunger striking called "A Righteous Hunger"?
The regional award went to the programme "It'll Cost You A Bomb", which was a study of Christian attitudes to nuclear armaments in the town of Dunoon, Scotland.