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BAFTA 2017: Father of Damilola Taylor in Bafta plea to end London knife killings


Damilola, Our Loved Boy, the BBC drama telling the story of the 10-year-old killed in London in 2000 and his family’s fight for justice, was one of the the biggest winners at BAFTA awards last night. It was named best single drama, and Wunmi Mosaku, who played Damilola’s mother Gloria, won the award for best-supporting actress.

Wunmi Mosaku won best-supporting actress at BAFTA 2017

In one of the most moving speeches of the night, producer Colin Barr was joined on stage by Damilola’s father Richard and older brother Tunde, who worked closely with those making the drama.

After collecting an award for the drama about the death of his son, Richard Taylor says youngsters must ‘spread the message’

The father of schoolboy Damilola Taylor has begged young people to stop the string of killings on the streets of London as he collected a Bafta for a drama about the death of his 10-year-old son.

Damilola, Our Loved Boy was awarded the prize for best single drama at the British Academy Television Awards on Sunday where Richard Taylor made an emotional speech hours after an 18-year-old man died in Enfield, north London, after suffering stab wounds.

Scotland Yard said he was the 10th teenager to have been killed in the capital in 2017.

Taylor was joined by Damilola’s brother Tunde and the production team as he said: “I want to dedicate this to the memory of Damilola Taylor and Gloria, my late wife, and first and foremost send a strong appeal to young people on the street killing themselves.

“Parents are crying, others are crying, the surge of killing has gone up in the city of London, I beg you all to stop this unnecessary killing of innocent people. Young people, spread the message.”

Damilola was stabbed with a broken beer bottle by youths in Peckham in 2000 and was found bleeding to death in a stairwell near his home. The killing shocked the nation and led to two bungled trials before two youths, Ricky and Danny Preddie, were convicted of his manslaughter in 2006.

Richard Taylor’s plea came shortly after the latest stabbing death of a teenager in the capital.

The 18-year-old was found suffering with stab wounds after police were called to reports of a mass brawl in Enfield, north London at around 10.30pm on Saturday. A 19-year-old man and 17-year-old boy were also found with knife injuries nearby.

In east London, a 41-year-old man was found dead having been shot and stabbed in. Police have appealed for witnesses to the incident on Saturday afternoon in Bow.