KING Charles surprised the National Television Awards audience with a video message to mark Emmerdale’s 50th birthday.
His Majesty, 73, made an appearance after host Joel Dommett announced the ITV soap’s landmark.
Charles said: “I am delighted to help celebrate the 50th anniversary of ‘Emmerdale’, and I’m afraid I remember when it was called ‘Emmerdale Farm’, owned by the Sugdens.
“It is a testament to all the hard work of the production team that it has since become such an important British institutions and a major British export with hundreds of thousands of fans from Scandinavia and New Zealand, all keen to follow the fortunes of what’s left of the Sugdens and their new neighbours.”
Keen gardener and environmentalist Charles added about the show highlighting country life and sustainability: “What makes ‘Emmerdale’ so special is that it has kept true to original writer, Kevin Laffan, who wanted to demonstrate farming as not just a job, it’s a whole way of life.
“On a daily basis, ‘Emmerdale’ continues to depict what life is really like and for those who work the land and protect our precious countryside. It also stresses brilliantly something that concerns me greatly – the long-term sustainability of the way we produce our food.
“I am heartened by the efforts of the production team off-screen, their ambition to achieve net zero emissions by 2030 making ‘Emmerdale’ one of the first British programmes to be awarded the ‘Albert Certification’, recognising its efforts to reduce the environmental impact of their production, and to produce content that stresses the importance of establishing a sustainable future.
“So it’s only right that the professional television awards acknowledge the enormous contribution ‘Emmerdale’ has made, and I hope everyone that is watching will join me in sending our warmest congratulations on its 50th anniversary, and wishing it an equally successful future.”
The NTAs’ executive producer Kim Turberville said about Charles’ video: “We were delighted to be able to surprise the ‘Emmerdale’ team with such an important message. Fifty years of iconic television out of the North is a huge achievement and rightly deserves to be celebrated in the best way possible.
“It is with great thanks to His Royal Highness for delivering this message to pop the icing on their birthday cake ahead of their very special weekend.”