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Winners unmasked at Specsavers Crime Thriller Awards 2014 on ITV3

Published: Fri 24 Oct 2014

Winners unmasked at Specsavers Crime Thriller Awards 2014 on ITV3
Keeley Hawes and Matthew McConaughey won the Best Actress and Best Actor awards at the prestigious Specsavers Crime Thriller Awards 2014, held at London’s Grosvenor House Hotel tonight.
The star-studded awards ceremony was hosted by Bradley Walsh and attended by the cream of actors, writers and producers from the world of crime TV and fiction, including Keeley Hawes, Stanley Tucci, Anna Maxwell Martin, James Norton, Rachael Stirling and Amanda Abbington.
Authors who received recognition at the awards, which celebrate the best in crime fiction on TV and in books, included Peter May, Wiley Cash and Robert Harris. 
For the first time a whole series, ITV’s Midsomer Murders, was inducted into the Hall of Fame, and the cast and crew turned out in force to collect their Award.
The glittering event, organised by Cactus TV and ITV3 in partnership with the Crime Writers’ Association, saw and Happy Valley win the TV Dagger and True Detective win the International TV Dagger.
Specsavers Crime Thriller Awards Winners are:
- Keeley Hawes for Line of Duty – Dagger for Best Actress 
- Matthew McConaughey for True Detective - Dagger for Best Actor 
- James Norton for Happy Valley - Dagger for Best Supporting Actor 
- Amanda Abbington for Sherlock - Dagger for Best Supporting Actress 
- Happy Valley – Dagger for Best TV Series
- True Detective – Dagger for Best International TV Series
- Cold in July - Dagger for Best Film 
- Peter May - Crime Thriller Book Club Best Read of the Year
- Wiley Cash - CWA Goldsboro Gold Dagger
- Ray Celestin - CWA John Creasey New Blood Dagger
- Robert Harris - CWA Ian Fleming Steel Dagger for Best Thriller of the Year 
- Denise Mina, Robert Harris and Midsomer Murders were inducted into the Hall of Fame
The awards, now in their seventh year, mark the culmination of ITV3’s six-week prime time series, The Specsavers Crime Thriller Club. The ceremony will be shown on ITV3 at 9pm, Monday 27 October 2014, and a full list of winners is below.
- The Best Actress Dagger Keeley Hawes, Line of Duty
- The Best Actor Dagger Matthew McConaughey, True Detective
- The Specsavers ITV3 Crime Thriller Book Club Best Read : Peter May, Entry Island (Quercus)
- CWA Goldsboro Gold Dagger for the Best Crime Novel of the Year:  Wiley Cash, This Dark Road to Mercy (Doubleday/Transworld)
- CWA John Creasey New Blood Dagger for the Best New Crime Writer of the Year: 
Ray Celestin, The Axeman’s Jazz (Mantle)
- CWA Ian Fleming Steel Dagger for the Best Thriller of the Year:  Robert Harris, An Officer and a Spy (Arrow)
- The TV Dagger Happy Valley
- The Film Dagger Cold in July
- The Best Supporting Actor Dagger James Norton, Happy Valley
- The Best Supporting Actress Dagger Amanda Abbington, Sherlock
- The International TV Dagger True Detective
Amanda Ross, Managing Director of Cactus TV, creator of the awards and season for ITV3 said: ‘This is the most popular genre of fiction on the screen and in print, so it’s great to be able to honour its true stars. Bradley Walsh was on sparkling form, so I’m sure the viewers at home will enjoy the event as much as all the stars in the room.’
Crime legends Denise Mina and Robert Harris were inducted into the CWA Hall of Fame at the awards ceremony in recognition of their contributions to the genre.
The Specsavers Crime Thriller Book Club Best Read of the year was awarded to Peter May for ‘Entry Island’. This award is selected by a group of independent publishing experts from the Awards Academy, from a shortlist of 6 great Crime reads featured throughout the Crime Thriller Club Series on ITV3.
This year’s CWA Goldsboro Gold Dagger for Best Crime Novel of the Year was won by Wiley Cash for debut novel This Dark Road to Mercy, a story of blood and vengeance involving two young sisters. Cash’s book beat an exceptional line-up of likely suspects including Paul Mendelson’s The First Rule of Survival, Louise Penny’s How the Light Gets In and Paula Daly’s Keep Your Friends Close to win the prestigious award.
The CWA John Creasey New Blood Dagger for Best New Crime Writer of the Year was awarded to Ray Celestin for his debut novel The Axeman’s Jazz. Named the most wanted new author in crime fiction, Celestin’s The Axeman’s Jazz and its tale of an axe killer with a mysterious identity beat off competition from M.J. Carter’s The Strangler Vine, Antonia Hodgson’s The Devil in the Marshalsea and A.S.A. Harrison’s The Silent Wife to take home the award. 
The CWA Ian Fleming Steel Dagger for Best Thriller of the Year went to Robert Harris for An Officer and a Spy. This bestselling author thriller battled it out against Terry Hayes for I Am Pilgrim, Greg Iles for Natchez Burning and Louise Doughty for Apple Tree Yard to win the esteemed award.
Notes to editors
Specsavers ITV3 Crime Thriller Awards
The Specsavers ITV3 Crime Thriller Awards 2014 will take place on Friday, 24th October at London’s Grosvenor House Hotel produced by Cactus TV, and will first be televised on ITV3 on Monday 27th October at 9pm. The 2014 Awards are the seventh annual event created and produced by Cactus TV for ITV3, and are sponsored by Specsavers in conjunction with the Crime Writers' Association.   Visit: for more information.
Specsavers is a Partnership of almost 2,000 locally-run businesses throughout the UK, Ireland, the Netherlands, Sweden, Norway, Finland, Denmark, Spain, Australia and New Zealand, all committed to delivering high quality, affordable optical and hearing care in the communities they serve. Each store is part-owned and managed by its own directors who are supported by key specialists in support offices that provide a range of services including marketing, accounting, IT and wholesaling, among others. Specsavers was voted the UK's most trusted optician by a YouGov Plc online survey of 2,423 adults, July 2014. More information can be found at:
Cactus TV
Cactus TV is a production company run by husband and wife team Simon and Amanda Ross. Productions include Saturday Kitchen and A Taste of Britain for BBC1, The Roux Scholarship, Hairy Bikers Food Tour of Britain for BBC2, Rachel Allen, The National Book Awards, Weekend for ITV1 and 8 years of the Channel 4 Richard & Judy show filmed live from Cactus studios. Amanda’s previous Book Club choices have created many million selling authors. According to the latest Broadcast survey, Cactus are the third largest independent supplier to the BBC.
ITV3 is one of the most popular digital channels in the UK and its focus on character driven narrative and drama helps the channel attract an upmarket audience. ITV3 is available on Freeview (channel 10), Freesat (115), Sky Digital (119) and Virgin Media (117).
Crime Writers’ Association
The Crime Writers’ Association has a membership of over 500 writers of fiction and non-fiction. Its main aims are to promote the crime genre and to support professional writers. The CWA has been providing social and professional support for its members for more than half a century, as well as administering the prestigious Dagger Awards. The Daggers name and Crossed Daggers logo are registered trademarks of the Crime Writers’ Association and are used under licence. For further information about the CWA, visit: or contact: 
Agile Marketing
Agile Marketing is a publishing-specialist promotions & project management agency. They project manage the Crime Thriller Academy, liaising with publishers and retailers to ensure the campaign, raising the profile of Crime Fiction, is maximised in store and amongst readers. They also manage the supporting website: