Coronation Street has been named as the nation's favourite soap at the Inside Soap awards.

The long-running ITV1 show scooped the top gong at the awards ceremony for the first time in ten years.

The street's Antony Cotton, who plays barman Sean Tully, won the best actor accolade in the awards voted by readers of Inside Soap magazine, taking Corrie's total number of awards to five; the same as BBC1's Eastenders.

"I've won the big one this year, and I'm very, very pleased that they chose me," said the actor-turned-chatshow host.

"I don't act because of it but it's nice that someone thinks I'm doing well."

The other big winners at the awards show include Lacey Turner, who won the best actress gong for her performances in EastEnders as Stacey Slater, and ITV1's The Bill, which walked away with the best drama award.

Inside Soap editor Steven Murphy said that this year's awards had been one of the most hotly contested in history.

"The Race for best soap was neck and neck until voting closed, which just proves what an outstanding year it's been in soapland," he explained.

Inside soap award winners

Best actor: Antony Cotton (Sean Tully, Coronation Street)
Best actress: Lacey Turner (Stacey Slater, EastEnders)
Sexiest male: Rob James-Collier (Liam Connor, Coronation Street)
Sexiest female: Roxanne Mckee (Louise Summers, Hollyoaks)
Best young actor: Eden Taylor-draper (Belle Dingle, Emmerdale)
Best newcomer: Rob James-Collier (Liam Connor, Coronation Street)
Best bad boy: Jack P Shepherd (David Platt, Coronation Street)
Best bitch: Sophie Thompson (Stella Crawford, EastEnders)
Best couple: Lacey Turner And Charlie Clements (Stacey And Bradley, EastEnders)
Funniest character: Charlie Hardwick (Val Lambert, Emmerdale)
Best-dressed: Kara Tointon (Dawn Swann, EastEnders)
Best drama: The Bill
Best storyline: Stella's torment of Ben (EastEnders)
Best soap: Coronation Street

25/09/2007 11:47:56