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Kudos head of production Alison Barnett is to receive this year’s Bafta Television Craft Special Award in recognition of more than 40 years in the business.

One of the first women ever to take up the role, Barnett has clocked up more than 400 hours of TV and has been part of 80 Bafta-nominated and 14 Bafta-winning productions.

She currently sits on Screenskill’s High-End TV Skills Council developing training programmes and partnerships across all creative departments.

Barnett said she would accept the honour on behalf of the “unsung heroes” working throughout TV production offices. “This is a chance for them to be recognised today too,” she said.

Bafta chief executive hailed Barnett as “an inspiring role model through her work in training and development” and highlighted a body of work that is “staggering in its volume, quality and popular appeal”.

Over 18 years at Kudos, Barnett has worked across all of the Banijay UK indie’s flagship dramas in that time, including Life on MarsBroadchurchSpooks and SAS Rogue Heroes.

She has worked in TV since the late 1970s, when she switched from being a theatre and opera stage manager to join the BBC’s drama department, where she held junior roles on shows such as Doctor WhoBergerac and Grange Hill.

Going freelance in 1985, she went on to work on Dennis Potter dramas Lipstick on Your CollarKaraoke and Cold Lazarus as well as Jimmy McGovern’s The Lakes and BBC1's 2004 adaptation of Charles Dickens' Bleak House prior to joining Kudos in 2005.

Barnett will receive the honour at this year's Bafta TV Craft Awards on Sunday 23 April.

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