An amazing award-winning night at the Soap Awards

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Anna Shaffer (Ruby Button)

I don’t think I have been as proud and as honored to be on Team Hollyoaks as I was this weekend.

We look forward to the Soap Awards every year, as it is the perfect opportunity for the cast and crew to get together and celebrate the hard work we do all year. We are always the loudest, the largest and most happiest cast at the ceremony but unfortunately we are not always the most victorious. But being ‘the underdogs’ is a label we love because it means we always have the chance to prove people wrong, which is exactly what we did this year at the 2013 British Soap awards by giving everyone a HUGE high 5 for our 5 awards. 5. FIVE. Now, that’s pretty impressive if I do say so myself.

For me, the weekend got off to a rather lovely start in Liverpool where I live with my beautiful flat-mate Jorgie Porter. Preparations for the awards started early with a manicure and pedicure to make sure there were no chipped nails on the red carpet later. Pink and polished, I zoomed over to Manchester where I bumped into the fabulous Andy Moss at the reception of the hotel we were staying at, The Hilton. Our rooms weren’t quite ready yet so we ran out to get some food before getting ready.

I think getting ready for red carpet events can actually be quite stressful, especially if, like me, doing your own make-up results in you looking like someone has punched you in the face. Luckily our wonderful press team had organised for the amazingly talented Rebecca Frances to do my make-up and the lovely Matthew Curtis and V05 team to tame my temperamental locks. No black eyes for me! My dress was by the Liverpool designer Kirsty Doyle, the classic style of the dress called for a classic hair and make-up look and this was the result:

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Kirsty even came to the hotel to dress me – how lovely is that!
Suited and booted, we all headed to the awards. I shared a car with Carli Norris, Tamaryn Payne and my partner in crime Jazz Franks. It was great to see Tammy, who left the show a few months ago and I think we all nearly reduced our driver to tears with all our nervous pre-red carpet giggling!

The awards themselves were amazing, everyone looked absolutely incredible and I have to say I developed quite a few girl crushes throughout the evening! My favorite red carpet looks of the night were Shobna Gulati who was also wearing a beautiful Kirsty Doyle creation, Jacqueline Jossa who stunned in coral and our own Jenny Metcalf. Smoking. Hot. We were nominated in every single category this year, which was amazing, and the buzz when we sat down in our sets was infectious. As soon as the archetypal silver fox himself began the Intro for the awards we just knew this would be a wonderful evening.
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I was seated next to Stephanie Davis and Steven Roberts and had been nominated to speak if we won for the Bus Crash, which was nominated for Most Spectacular Scene and Best Episode. As much as I was rooting for us, I secretly hoped we wouldn’t win just so I wouldn’t have to speak in front of everyone, I mean LOOK how many people there were!
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BUT WE DID WIN. And I didn’t swear, fall over OR drop the award….yes!!!! And our winning streak didn’t stop there. We won four more times. Our hunky Danny Mac won the Sexiest Male Award, the charming Joseph Thompson picked up another for Best Newcomer and our very own star-crossed lovers Keiron Richardson & Emmett J Scanlan won the Best On Screen Partnership award. But it was the award for Best Actress, collected by Hollyoaks’ Claire Cooper that really brought the house down. She is one of the most beautiful and talented women in this industry and her time at Hollyoaks recently came to end, but what a way to go.

Mostly, I think the awards proved that Hollyoaks is in the strongest shape the show has been in for a long time and that everyone involved is so proud to be a part of a long running issue-led drama that continues to prove itself amongst its competitors. Oh, and that we are most definitely the rowdiest. I think most of us will have to have our shoes re-heeled this weeks after all the foot stomping…

Awards done & dusted it was time to let loose and celebrate. The Great Gatsby themed after party was the perfect place for everyone to congratulate each other, and dance away the evening. Naturally, I made a b-line for the one and only Chris Noth.

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Yepp, that’s right. I MET MR BIG. OH MY GOD. Whatsmore, I even persuaded him to consider a cameo in Hollyoaks and left him speaking to our writing team as I went to refill my martini glass. So, ladies and gentlemen, watch this space.

The rest of the night is a blur of dancing, hugging, changing into converse and finally curling up in bed at 5am with my dominos pizza a huge pint of water. I lady I am not.

Thank you so much to everyone that voted for us this year, you are invaluable and the response to the show is such a huge part of the shows success. Keep watching, because you can expect, quite literally, (mr) BIG things in the future.

Anna xx
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