Northern Ireland news

Stephen Clements inducted into 2021 IMRO Hall of Fame

BBC Radio Ulster presenter Stephen Clements died suddenly in 2020. Picture by Arthur Allison/ Pacemaker

THE late Stephen Clements has been described as "one of the most naturally gifted presenters to ever have been on the northern Irish airwaves" as he was posthumously inducted into the 2021 IMRO Radio Awards Hall of Fame.

His brother Gavin received the award, which celebrates the people who make Irish radio such an integral part of daily life, at a ceremony in Dublin.

Clements, a popular BBC Radio Ulster host, died suddenly in January 2020.

His death came just four months after he had started what he described as "the job of a lifetime" when he took over Sean Coyle's mid-morning slot.

The new role had come after he had carved out a successful broadcasting career, which saw him turn Q Radio's breakfast show into one of the most popular programmes in the north.

His death prompted an outpouring of tributes across Northern Ireland and beyond.

The Hall of Fame celebrates those well-known names on air and those behind the microphone that make Irish radio such an integral part of daily life.

Other recipients into this year's Hall of Fame include Belfast-born George Hamilton of RTE's Lyric FM, C103's Patricia Messenger and East Coast FM's Declan Meehan.

A IMRO spokesman said: "Stephen's talent lay in his genuine affection for other people and an eye for the everyday madness of daily life, allowing us all to laugh out loud especially in difficult times.

"Having built up a huge following on Q Radio, especially with his legendary partnership Cate Conway where they gained huge numbers with the breakfast show, he then landed what he described as his dream gig with BBC Radio Ulster in the 10.30 slot.

"Stephen had an incredible knack of being able to prick pomposity, but still remain on good terms with the great and the good."

Chris Doyle, who hosted the event, said all four inductees have had "significant impact in their radio careers, they are trailblazers, entertainers, amazing broadcasters and have literally seen and done it all".

Celene Craig of the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland added: "The four recipients have made notable and lasting contributions to the radio industry and I am very pleased to celebrate their achievements."

Gavin Clements accepting in honour of his brother Stephen Clements is pictured with George Hamilton, Declan Meehan and Patrica Messinger at their induction ceremony to the IMRO Radio Awards Hall of Fame 2021. Picture by Andres Poveda

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