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  1. ITV Report

Surprise Surprise! Cilla Black to be honoured at TV Baftas

TV star Cilla Black has been in showbusiness since the early 1960s. Credit: Phil Cole/PA Wire

Presenter Cilla Black will be honoured at this year's TV Baftas to mark her outstanding contribution to entertainment for over half a century.

The 70-year-old former pop star, who has hosted iconic shows such as Blind Date and Surprise Surprise, will be given the Special Award at the Baftas to mark her success.

A young Cilla Black records record a sketch for a Christmas show at ABC-TV's studios in Teddington with Bruce Forsyth in 1965. Credit: PA

Black has hosted more than 500 editions of her programmes and was the first woman to have her own prime-time chat show on BBC1.

She follows previous recipients such as Simon Cowell, Jon Snow, Murray Walker and Jeremy Paxman.

Cilla Black (left) with Cliff Richard and Lulu (right) in 1970. Credit: PA

The Liverpudlian native, who was an associate act of the Beatles in early 1960s, will pick up the award on May 18 at the Theatre Royal, Drury Lane, in London and it will also be broadcast by BBC1.

Cilla enjoyed renewed success with her ITV show Blind Date. Credit: PA

Black, who first hosted her own BBC show in 1968, said:

I am thrilled to be honoured with this award - I am totally delighted.

I've been very fortunate to have a long and full career in television and this means the world to me.

– Cilla Black