‘Unbelievable’: Alan Sugar irate over not owning a Bafta award

Awards season is in full swing but one man feels particularly hard done by: Alan Sugar.

The host of The Apprentice has called for himself to be given his own special award in recognition of the reality show’s success, after revealing that his wife is upset that he has never been allowed to keep a Bafta statuette.

Lord Sugar told the Radio Times it was “unbelievable” that the show had won two Bafta TV awards but that the physical awards had been taken by behind-the-scenes staff who made the show, leaving him with nothing to display at home.

“I went up there and made the acceptance speech and all that stuff, right? And I was told, no, they’re not for me, that’s for the hard-working backroom people in [TV production company] Boundless – one of whom was an accountant, believe it or not.

“So I think it’s about time that Bafta started to recognise the show as a major contributor to business on television – in a similar manner to Simon Cowell [who received Bafta’s special award in 2010]. I think Bafta should recognise me for my great contribution to business, and give me one of these awards.”

Sugar, who made hundreds of millions of pounds from electronics and property, repeatedly complained about the perceived slight, especially after Young Apprentice, the youth version of the show, won in 2012.

“Honestly, it was really frustrating – more so for my wife than myself. She couldn’t understand it. She knew how hard I fought to get the Junior [Apprentice] done. And then we go to the ceremony, it wins, and she goes: ‘Where’s your award?’ I said: ‘No, I don’t get one.’ Unbelievable. Unbelievable.”

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Sugar complained that when he did an interview with the BBC about the Bafta win he couldn’t pose with his own statue. “So I borrowed it from one of these people that won it, and they had a motorbike sitting outside my house in case I stole it. They wanted me to give it straight back. It’s unbelievable. Unbelievable.”

The businessman gave the interview to the Radio Times to promote the first series of The Celebrity Apprentice in a decade. The charity show, which has been filmed for Comic Relief, features the former England football manager Sam Allardyce, broadcaster Rachel Johnson, and TV presenter Rylan Clark-Neal.

Sugar was made a Labour peer when Gordon Brown was prime minister but quit the party after the 2015 general election.

He has repeatedly threatened to leave the country if Jeremy Corbyn becomes prime minister and also used the Radio Times interview to suggest the Labour leader is a Trotskyite who would put “statues of pseudo-Lenin in Trafalgar Square”.

The choice of statues in Trafalgar Square is a matter for the mayor of London, rather than Downing Street. It is unclear what Sugar meant by “pseudo-Lenin”.



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