Triple joy for Radio Foyle at PPI awards

Radio Foyle Presenters Mark Patterson, Stephen McCauley  and Sarah Brett at the PPI awards on Friday night
Radio Foyle Presenters Mark Patterson, Stephen McCauley and Sarah Brett at the PPI awards on Friday night
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BBC Radio Foyle’s Sarah Brett has been named Irish News Broadcaster Of The Year on a night of unparalleled success for the Derry radio station at this year’s PPI (Phonographic Performance Ireland) Radio Awards.

The Derry station also picked up top honours in the Local Station Of The Year category while the station’s Pure Culture programme won Bronze in the Specialist Speech category.

Breakfast presenter Sarah told the ‘Journal’ her triumph came as a “serious shock.”

“I’m delighted though, needless to say. The PPIs are highly competitive and BBC Radio Foyle were nominated in some tough categories, so to come away with two golds and a bronze is a great achievement and the whole station is responsible for that.

“I’ve said it before, but it’s a brilliant place to work. We have some very talented people - but most of all they’re sound, and it makes getting up at 5am every day worthwhile. I couldn’t have got this award without them or our listeners so I’m very grateful.”

Sarah beat RTE’s Sean O’Rourke and Ian Byrne of Spin 103.8 to take top honours in the news broadcaster category while Foyle topped the Local Station category ahead of Donegal-based Ocean FM and Midwest Radio.

Fergus Keeling, Head of Radio for BBC Northern Ireland said “quality, creativity and diversity” were behind the Derry station’s success at Friday night’s awards cermony in Kilkenny.

There was further success for Radio Ulster including Gold for Evening Extra in the News Programme category for its programme coverage of the extreme snow conditions.