The Oldie of the Year Awards 2019

The Oldie of the Year Awards 2019

The annual Oldie of the Year Awards took place at Simpson's-in-the-Strand in London on Tuesday January 29th at a lunch time ceremony attended by 150 guests.

Hosted by The Oldie magazine and presented by Gyles Brandreth, with judges including Sir Tim Rice and Rachel Johnson, awards celebrated the achievements of the older generation, both over the last year and throughout their their long and distinguished careers.

Mary Berry, Jilly Cooper, and Lady Colin Campbell were among the VIP guests who attended the awards this year, with the winning celebrities listed below.

  • The Lionel d’Or Oldie of the Year - Lionel Blair (90)

  • The Keep Calm and Carry On Award - Amanda Barrie (83)

  • Oldie Signwriter of the Times - Margaret Calvert (82)

  • Oldie Tigress We’d Like to Have to Tea - Judith Kerr (95)

  • Oldie Who Has Seen It All Before and Worse - Lady Avon (98)

  • The Oldie Creative Ape of the Year - Desmond Morris (90)

  • Oldie Silver Screen Stars of the Year - Sheila Hancock (85) & Peter Bowles (82)

Peter Bowles, winner of Oldie Silver Screen Star of the Year alongside leading lady Sheila Hancock, said:

“What's so wonderful about this is that it's so quintessentially Oldie. As an actor, you get a award not for your role, but for getting a job at all."

 Amanda Barrie, star of Carry On Cleo, said:

 "If anyone has the money for it, our next film should be Carry On Breathing."


Speaking after the award ceremony about getting roles when you’re of the older generation, Lionel Blair claims he doesn't get offered TV work because of sky high insurance costs. The 90-year-old showbiz legend explained that older actors find it difficult to work on television because the insurance for them "costs a fortune" and production companies are often unwilling to fork out the fees and instead opt for younger performers.

Lionel told the Daily Mirror newspaper: "The terrible thing at the moment is when they want older people on television the insurance costs a fortune, as you can imagine. It falls on the production company, so they've got that to pay on top of my wage, and they can make young people look older."

Revealing it has also affected his work away from television, he added: "I've done loads of cruises but that suddenly stopped because the insurance is too much, in case I peg it in the middle of the Nile. But I'm quite a good sailor."