PHILLIP Schofield’s replacement at the British Soap Awards, Jane McDonald, has been praised after the new presenter sent fans into hysterics.
Earlier this week, The Sun exclusively revealed how Jane, 60, was hosting the annual ceremony for the first time, after Phillip, 61, announced he had completely left ITV and the awards ceremony, which he has hosted since 2006.
The star walked the red carpet in a red velvet gown before donning an even more fabulous glittery gold gown for the ceremony itself.
Jane was given a warm welcome by soap stars from Emmerdale, EastEnders and Coronation Street and a viewer told The Sun Online: “Jane is a natural at it.
“It’s obvious that she loves soap operas and audiences love her for it. She set off hysterical excitement from her fans when she started performing — even when she started the song in the undertones.”
“It was like she’d been doing this for years. The audience and the soap stars absolutely loved her.”
A source added, “It’s clear the soap stars were all thrilled to have Jane as their host and nothing has eclipsed their hard work over the year, just as it should be.”
Coronation Street was the big winner at this year’s British Soap Awards with six awards but failed to secure the big gong.
Actress Charlotte Jordan and Dame Maureen Lipman – who tells the hard-hitting tale of an acid attack on the ITV soap – were all honored at the glittering party at the Lowry Theater in Salford.
Dame Maureen won Best Comedy Actress for her role as Evelyn Plummer.
Cobbles’ newcomer Channique Sterling-Brown also received her own award for Best Newcomer.
Best Single Episode went to stalker Justin’s dramatic acid attack on Daisy Midgeley and Ryan Connor, while Daisy actress Charlotte Jordan also took home the Best Dramatic Performance award.
The Acid Attack storyline also won Best Storyline again.
Coronation Street won Best Soap Family for The Platts.
But while Corrie took home a whopping six awards, she lost the coveted Best British Soap award to BBC rivals EastEnders.
The British Soap awards ceremony will be broadcast on ITV1 on Tuesday 6 June at 8pm.