Bafta TV Awards – past winners: Rebecca Front

"The world went into slow motion. I was right in the middle of a row — one of the many reasons I was sure I wouldn’t win"

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Rebecca won a Bafta in 2010: best female performance in a comedy role for The Thick of It, which also won best sitcom that year

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Were you surprised when you won?

The world went into slow motion. I was right in the middle of a row — one of the many reasons I was sure I wouldn’t win — so in my high heels I ploughed past everybody, including Chris Addison (who’s also in The Thick of It) and a very good friend. he’d stood up to applaud and I was conscious of pushing him out of the way. I rang him the next day to say I was sorry.

Had you prepared a speech?

I didn’t think there was any point until my nine-year-old daughter said, “mum, if you do win and you don’t know what to say, you’ll embarrass yourself and everybody else.” I was really glad I’d thought it through because I’d have been hopeless otherwise — I was shaking so much.

How did you celebrate?

I did quite a lot of walking around saying “wow”, and when I went home my kids had made “Well done mummy” banners, which was really lovely. Then I woke up at three in the morning convinced I was having a heart attack. “I knew this was going to happen,” I thought, “I’ve won a Bafta and now I’m going to die.” In fact, it was what’s known in the industry as “Bafta arm”: the mask is so heavy and I’d been clutching it so hard, I’d trapped a nerve.

It is very heavy. Have you thought of any alternative uses for it?

Goodness, no! I revere it. It’s become my third child. The children gave him a name: he’s Billy Bob Bafta. When we have visitors, they’ll say, “Why don’t you go and sit over there next to Billy Bob?”

Where do you keep Billy Bob?

On a bookshelf, so depending on who’s coming round, I can push him further back or bring him forward. But most people who come round want to pose with him and do their speeches.

What was the first trophy you won?

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I won a couple for debating and public speaking when I was 13 or 14. I was very geeky and toying with the idea of going into politics… ironically!