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VERVE AND ALL SAINTS BIG WINNERS AT BRITS Get Tickets

[B]THE VERVE[/B] and [a]All Saints[/a] were the big winners at last night's 1998 Brit Awards....

THE VERVE (pictured) and All Saints were the big winners at last night's 1998 Brit Awards held at Docklands Arena in London. Oasis and Radiohead, however, failed to take a single trophy and were not in attendance.

The Verve took the prizes for Best Album for 'Urban Hymns', Best Group and Best Producer which they shared with Chris Potter and Youth. The Verve did not attend the ceremony in person but accepted their awards via a satellite link to the venue from across London at Brixton Academy where they were headlining a charity gig for the homeless. 'Lucky Man' from the band's performance was also beamed in for the awards audience.

All Saints reinforced their newfound status as the current UK public's fave girl band - bumping the Spice Girls off their pedestal - when the Saints' UK Number One single 'Never Ever' brought the foursome victory in the Best Single and Best Video categories. The Spice Girls had to make do with a hastily-added Special Achievement Award celebrating their business success.

This year's Brit Awards were attended by Deputy Prime Minister John Prescott. While watching Fleetwood Mac perform 'Don't Stop', 'Rhiannon' and 'Go Your Own Way' following their win in the Outstanding Contribution To British Music award, the Deputy PM and his wife, sitting with their son, were drenched by a bucket of ice-water thrown at them by Danbert Nobacon from Chumbawamba. The singer was pounced on by security and frogmarched from the Arena where he was arrested by police but released without charge.

Welsh rockers Stereophonics, who headlined the NME/Miller Genuine Draft Bratbus Tour through the UK in January, were singled out by the music establishment as Best Newcomers.

The full list of Brits Awards 1998 winners is:

BEST MALE ARTIST: Finley Quaye

BEST FEMALE ARTIST: SHOLA AMA

BEST GROUP: THE VERVE

BEST ALBUM: THE VERVE - 'URBAN HYMNS'

BEST DANCE ACT: PRODIGY

BEST NEWCOMER: STEREOPHONICS

BEST PRODUCER: THE VERVE/YOUTH/CHRIS POTTER

BEST INTERNATIONAL MALE: JON BON JOVI

BEST INTERNATIONAL FEMALE: BJORK

BEST INTERNATIONAL NEWCOMER: EELS

BEST INTERNATIONAL GROUP: U2

BEST SOUNDTRACK: THE FULL MONTY

BEST SINGLE: ALL SAINTS - 'NEVER EVER'

BEST VIDEO: ALL SAINTS - 'NEVER EVER'

OUTSTANDING CONTRIBUTION TO BRITISH MUSIC: FLEETWOOD MAC

THE FREDDIE MERCURY AWARD: ELTON JOHN

SPECIAL ACHIEVEMENT AWARD: SPICE GIRLS

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