Prince William Surprises at BAFTA TV Awards, Resumes Public Duties

Baroness Benjamin honored for her impactful career and charity.

by Nouman Rasool
Prince William Surprises at BAFTA TV Awards, Resumes Public Duties
© Jordan Pettitt - WPA Pool/Getty Images

Unexpectedly, Prince William, Duke of Cambridge, graced the BAFTA TV Awards and gave a very touching video message that held everyone present at the event. The event was to confer the title of Baroness Floella Benjamin, who is a much esteemed character from British children's television, and an ardent philanthropist was bestowed with the BAFTA Fellowship for lifelong dedication to art and society.

During a pre-recorded address - to be played during the ceremony before being published later by Hello! magazine - Prince William praised the baroness for her "trailblazing work with children and young people". " He praised her enduring dedication to television broadcasting, which has spanned several beloved programs including "Play School," "Play Away," "Jamboree," and "Fast Forward." The prince said the award was a testament to Benjamin's "long-standing commitment" to bettering the lives of young and vulnerable people.

"You remind us of the power of empathy, compassion, and action to effect positive change," he said; thrilled that one so young could receive such a distinguished honor. "I send my heartfelt congratulations," he said, confirming that indeed she's doing a great job on and off the screen.

Baroness Benjamin Overwhelmed

Moved to tears by the acknowledgment, Baroness Benjamin told PA Media how thrilled and shocked she was to be honored with a BAFTA Fellowship. "I've just been floating ever since," she confessed, celebrating the remarkable accolade that highlighted her illustrious career and extensive charitable work.

In his tribute, Prince William also highlighted Benjamin’s role as vice president of Action for Children and Barnardo's, noting her impactful advocacy for the welfare and education of children. She was also one of the many visible leaders in the Windrush generation who had raised a voice against the discrimination of immigrants in the U.K., showing a life of service and social justice.

This appearance marked one of the first public engagements for Prince William since he returned to royal duties in late April, following a personal sabbatical to be with his wife during her cancer treatment. His involvement in the BAFTA TV Awards, despite personal challenges, emphasizes the royal family's ongoing commitment to the arts and societal causes.

Prince William