Diversity star Ashley Banjo was lauded by viewers on Sunday after winning the award for Must See TV Moment at the British Academy Television Awards.

The Britain’s Got Talent star left many fans in tears with a speech reflecting on the ‘torrent of abuse’ he received following the troupe’s Black Lives Matter-inspired performance, which sparked over 24,000 complaints.

During his speech Ashley insisted that such a win was a positive sign of social change, and urged his fans to ‘keep standing up for what’s right.’ 

Praised: Diversity star Ashley Banjo was lauded by viewers on Sunday after winning the award for Must See TV Moment at the British Academy Television Awards

Praised: Diversity star Ashley Banjo was lauded by viewers on Sunday after winning the award for Must See TV Moment at the British Academy Television Awards

Praised: Diversity star Ashley Banjo was lauded by viewers on Sunday after winning the award for Must See TV Moment at the British Academy Television Awards

Ashley joined his brother Jordan on the stage to accept the award for Must See TV Moment, the only prize voted for by the viewing public.

The pair reflected on the horrific abuse they’d received after their dance following the death of George Floyd sparked 24,000 complaints to media watchdog Ofcom.

Ashley said: ‘This is mad! This is so much more than just an award, I first want to say thank you to every single person who voted for us, it means so much, every phone call, text, comment, DM, you guys made a difference to what was a really dark time.

Lauded: The Britain's Got Talent star left many fans in tears with a speech reflecting on the 'torrent of abuse' he received following the troupe's Black Lives Matter-inspired performance

Lauded: The Britain's Got Talent star left many fans in tears with a speech reflecting on the 'torrent of abuse' he received following the troupe's Black Lives Matter-inspired performance

Lauded: The Britain’s Got Talent star left many fans in tears with a speech reflecting on the ‘torrent of abuse’ he received following the troupe’s Black Lives Matter-inspired performance

‘Being in a storm of 30,000 comments just being in a torrent of threats, that support made a different. I want to say thank you to the people who poured that abuse online, you showed why that performance was necessary. 

‘As much as there’s so many conversations and so much needs to change, this is what change looks like, I’m so thankful to all those people, for me it’s not about presenting the minority, standing here right now this represents the majority, thank you so much. Let’s keep standing up for what’s right.’

His speech earned a hugely positive reception from fans, with many admitting they’d been brought to tears.

One penned: ‘Diversity have gone from being the 2nd most complained about TV performance of the decade to winning a BAFTA for the Best TV Moment. Well and truly deserved. Legends.’

Another added: ‘My faith in the British public slightly restored, as they voted the #BAFTATV award for most memorable TV moment to be Diversity on BGT, taking the knee @Diversity_tweet #respect.’

‘Well done Diversity!!’ a third tweeted.

One fan wrote: ‘@AshleyBanjo @Diversity_tweet Watching TV BAFTAs… thank you again for such a brave, powerful and thought-provoking performance on @BGT last year peace and love to you all xxx.’ 

'The tears are flowing': His speech earned a hugely positive reception from fans, with many admitting they'd been brought to tears

'The tears are flowing': His speech earned a hugely positive reception from fans, with many admitting they'd been brought to tears

‘The tears are flowing’: His speech earned a hugely positive reception from fans, with many admitting they’d been brought to tears

‘Well done to @AshleyBanjo and #Diversity on their #BAFTATV win. Well deserved and ironic after all the abuse that was hurled at him after Britain’s Got Talent. Rightly so it was more about #BLM and #BGT. Congratulations again Ashley,’ one viewer praised. 

An emotional viewer added: ‘Wow!! Tears streaming down my face at @AshleyBanjo’s BAFTA speech just now. This is what change looks like. Incredible and eloquent speech. Equality, DIVERSITY and inclusion at its best. Well done.’

‘@AshleyBanjo had me in tears again!! That speech. Thanking the complainants too – spot on,’ a viewer also praised.

One added: ‘Congratulations on the BAFTA. Well deserved. That piece moved me to tears.’

Yes! Following the sensational win, Ashley and his brother Jordan took to Instagram to share a selfie with their BAFTA, writing: 'WE DID IT!!!!'

Yes! Following the sensational win, Ashley and his brother Jordan took to Instagram to share a selfie with their BAFTA, writing: 'WE DID IT!!!!'

Yes! Following the sensational win, Ashley and his brother Jordan took to Instagram to share a selfie with their BAFTA, writing: ‘WE DID IT!!!!’

Diversity’s performance became the second-most complained about television moment of the decade, but a spokesperson for the government-approved regulatory body confirmed to MailOnline no action would be taken. 

Troupe leader Ashley later revealed he and the dance group had been subject to racist abuse in the wake of the controversy, and then reacted to Ofcom’s announcement on Instagram.

He penned: ‘Creativity is always a leap of faith. All I did what was what felt right and I’d do it 100 times over… Sending love to everyone that stood by us’

The routine, which narrated the death of black man George Floyd beneath the knee of a white police officer, divided fans after it aired during BGT live show in October. 

Progress: During his speech Ashley insisted that such a win was a positive sign of social change, and urged his fans to 'keep standing up for what's right'

Progress: During his speech Ashley insisted that such a win was a positive sign of social change, and urged his fans to 'keep standing up for what's right'

Progress: During his speech Ashley insisted that such a win was a positive sign of social change, and urged his fans to ‘keep standing up for what’s right’

Viewers took to Twitter in the aftermath of the episode airing on September 5, complaining about the politicisation of the ITV prime-time show. 

Following the sensational win, Ashley and his brother Jordan took to Instagram to share a selfie with their BAFTA, writing: ‘WE DID IT!!!! Proud and overwhelmed would be an understatement. Thank you so much to everyone that supported us and continues to do so. This is such a special moment. 

‘So much hate, so much negativity and still so much that needs to change. But also so much love, so much support and so many important conversations. Here now after all of it… We’re BAFTA award winners!!’

Sunday’s BAFTA TV Awards celebrated and rewarded the very best programmes and performances of 2020. 

Winner: Following its three wins at the British Academy Television Craft Awards in May, I May Destroy You, won two more BAFTAs on Sunday, for Mini-Series and Leading Actress for Michaela Coel (pictured middle)

Winner: Following its three wins at the British Academy Television Craft Awards in May, I May Destroy You, won two more BAFTAs on Sunday, for Mini-Series and Leading Actress for Michaela Coel (pictured middle)

Winner: After three wins at the British Academy Television Craft Awards, I May Destroy You, won two BAFTAs for Mini-Series and Leading Actress for Michaela Coel (pictured middle) 

The evening was hosted by Richard Ayoade and featured performances by Years & Years and Alexis Ffrench 

While Line Of Duty’s Adrian Dunbar, Bill Bailey, Jon Snow, Oti Mabuse, Rob Beckett, Rose Matafeo, Sanjeev Bhaskar, and Zawe Ashton acted as presenters.

Other guest presenters – Catherine O’Hara, Jon Snow, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Jamie Demetriou, Tommy Jessop, Bob Mortimer and Paul Whitehouse – appeared via video call during the ceremony. 

There was no mention of Noel Clarke, who has been accused by more than 20 women of sexual harassment and bullying, during the event. The actor, 45, was suspended from BAFTA amid the allegations after he won the Outstanding British Contribution to Cinema award in April. 

Following its three wins at the British Academy Television Craft Awards in May, I May Destroy You, won two more BAFTAs on Sunday, for Mini-Series and Leading Actress for Michaela Coel.

Big hit: Small Axe starring John Boyega leads this year's nominations with 15 nods

Big hit: Small Axe starring John Boyega leads this year's nominations with 15 nods

Serious: The five-part series also stars Letitia Wright among a vast cast

Serious: The five-part series also stars Letitia Wright among a vast cast

Big hit: Small Axe starring John Boyega (left) and Letitia Wright (right) led the nominations with 15 nods, with Malachi Kirby winning on the night in the Supporting Actor category

Elsewhere, the Leading Actor award was won by first-time nominee Paul Mescal for his performance as Connor in Normal People.

Malachi Kirby, another first-time winner, won for his performance in Small Axe in the Supporting Actor category. Small Axe had led this year’s nominations with 15 nods.

And Small Axe – which features five films that tell stories about lives of West Indian immigrants in London from the 1960s to the 1980s – also picked up two Leading Actor nominations with John Boyega and Shaun Parkes both receiving nods.

Rakie Ayola also won her first BAFTA for Supporting Actress for her performance in Anthony.

Coming-of-age drama: First-time nominee Paul Mescal scooped the gong for Leading Actor for his performance as Connell in Normal People (pictured with co-star Daisy Edgar Jones)

Coming-of-age drama: First-time nominee Paul Mescal scooped the gong for Leading Actor for his performance as Connell in Normal People (pictured with co-star Daisy Edgar Jones)

Coming-of-age drama: First-time nominee Paul Mescal scooped the gong for Leading Actor for his performance as Connell in Normal People (pictured with co-star Daisy Edgar Jones)

BAFTA TV Awards 2021: Winners

 Drama Series 

Save Me Too  

Drama Series:  Save Me Too starring Suranne Jonea and Lennie James

Drama Series:  Save Me Too starring Suranne Jonea and Lennie James

Drama Series:  Save Me Too starring Suranne Jonea and Lennie James

Leading Actor

Paul Mescal – Normal People   

Leading Actor: Paul Mescal in  Normal People

Leading Actor: Paul Mescal in  Normal People

Leading Actor: Paul Mescal in  Normal People

Leading Actress

Michaela Coel – I May Destroy You 

Leading Actress: Michaela Coel in I May Destroy You

Leading Actress: Michaela Coel in I May Destroy You

Leading Actress: Michaela Coel in I May Destroy You

Supporting Actor 

Malachi Kirby – Small Axe

Supporting Actor: Malachi Kirby in  Small Axe

Supporting Actor: Malachi Kirby in  Small Axe

Supporting Actor: Malachi Kirby in  Small Axe 

Supporting Actress

Rakie Ayola – Anthony

Supporting Actress: Rakie Ayola in Anthony

Supporting Actress: Rakie Ayola in Anthony

Supporting Actress: Rakie Ayola in Anthony

Comedy Entertainment Programme 

The Big Narstie Show  

Comedy Entertainment Programme: The Big Narstie Show

Comedy Entertainment Programme: The Big Narstie Show

Comedy Entertainment Programme: The Big Narstie Show

Female Performance In A Comedy Programme

Aimee Lou Wood – Sex Education 

Female Performance In A Comedy Programme: Aimee Lou Wood in Sex Education

Female Performance In A Comedy Programme: Aimee Lou Wood in Sex Education

Female Performance In A Comedy Programme: Aimee Lou Wood in Sex Education

Male Performance In A Comedy Programme

Charlie Cooper – This Country

Male Performance In A Comedy Programme: Charlie Cooper in This Country

Male Performance In A Comedy Programme: Charlie Cooper in This Country

Male Performance In A Comedy Programme: Charlie Cooper in This Country

Mini-Series 

I May Destroy You

Mini-Series: I May Destroy You starring Michaela Coel and Weruche Opia

Mini-Series: I May Destroy You starring Michaela Coel and Weruche Opia

Mini-Series: I May Destroy You starring Michaela Coel and Weruche Opia 

Current Affairs

America’s War On Abortion (Exposure) 

Current Affairs: America's War On Abortion (Exposure)

Current Affairs: America's War On Abortion (Exposure)

Current Affairs: America’s War On Abortion (Exposure)

Daytime 

The Great House Giveaway

Daytime The Great House Giveaway

Daytime The Great House Giveaway

Daytime The Great House Giveaway 

Entertainment Performance

Romesh Ranganathan – The Ranganation 

Entertainment Performance Romesh Ranganathan - The Ranganation

Entertainment Performance Romesh Ranganathan - The Ranganation

Entertainment Performance Romesh Ranganathan – The Ranganation

 Entertainment Programme 

Life & Rhymes

Entertainment Programme: Life & Rhymes

Entertainment Programme: Life & Rhymes

Entertainment Programme: Life & Rhymes

Factual Series 

Once Upon A Time In Iraq 

Factual Series: Once Upon A Time In Iraq

Factual Series: Once Upon A Time In Iraq

Factual Series: Once Upon A Time In Iraq

Features 

Long Lost Family: Born Without Trace

Features: Long Lost Family: Born Without Trace

Features: Long Lost Family: Born Without Trace

Features: Long Lost Family: Born Without Trace

News Coverage 

Sky News: Inside Idlib 

News Coverage: Sky News: Inside Idlib

News Coverage: Sky News: Inside Idlib

News Coverage: Sky News: Inside Idlib

Reality & Constructed Factual 

The School That Tried To End Racism

Reality & Constructed Factual: The School That Tried To End Racism

Reality & Constructed Factual: The School That Tried To End Racism

Reality & Constructed Factual: The School That Tried To End Racism

Single Drama

Sitting In Limbo

Single Drama: Sitting In Limbo

Single Drama: Sitting In Limbo

Single Drama: Sitting In Limbo

Soap & Continuing Drama

Casualty

Soap & Continuing Drama: Casualty

Soap & Continuing Drama: Casualty

Soap & Continuing Drama: Casualty

International

Welcome To Chechnya: The Gay Purge (Storyville)

International: Welcome To Chechnya: The Gay Purge (Storyville)

International: Welcome To Chechnya: The Gay Purge (Storyville)

International: Welcome To Chechnya: The Gay Purge (Storyville)

Live Event 

Springwatch

Live Event: Springwatch

Live Event: Springwatch

Live Event: Springwatch

Scripted Comedy 

Inside No. 9

Scripted Comedy: Inside No. 9

Scripted Comedy: Inside No. 9

Scripted Comedy: Inside No. 9

Short Form Programme

They Saw The Sun First 

Short Form Programme: They Saw The Sun First

Short Form Programme: They Saw The Sun First

Short Form Programme: They Saw The Sun First

Single Documentary

Locked In: Breaking The Silence (Storyville)

Single Documentary: Locked In: Breaking The Silence (Storyville)

Single Documentary: Locked In: Breaking The Silence (Storyville)

Single Documentary: Locked In: Breaking The Silence (Storyville)

Virgin Media’s Must-See Moment (Voted For By The Public)

Britain’s Got Talent – Diversity Perform A Routine Inspired By The Events Of 2020

Virgin Media's Must-See Moment: Britain's Got Talent - Diversity Perform A Routine Inspired By The Events Of 2020

Virgin Media's Must-See Moment: Britain's Got Talent - Diversity Perform A Routine Inspired By The Events Of 2020

Virgin Media’s Must-See Moment: Britain’s Got Talent – Diversity Perform A Routine Inspired By The Events Of 2020 

 

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Source: Daily Mail

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