Simpson and O’Connor win Audio Drama Writing Awards

31 January 2016

The winners of the Tinniswood and Imison were announced tonight at the star-studded BBC Audio Drama Awards.

Eoin O'Connor (Imison winner), Joseph O'Connor (Tinniswood shortlisted) and Gemma McMullan

Julian Simpson received the 2016 Tinniswood Award for best audio drama script of the year for his play Fugue State. Newcomer Eoin O’Connor took home the Imison Award for the best debut script.

The ceremony was hosted by Sir Lenny Henry and the writing awards were presented by acclaimed dramatist Mike Bartlett – himself a former recipient of both prizes.


Fugue State was inspired by a series of talks and workshops at the Wellcome Trust. Based on the latest thinking on how the human brain processes inputs, the drama explores the treatment with sound recordings of a man who has undergone trauma and lost his memory of the events which caused his condition.

The judges, Mike Bartlett, Rachel Joyce and Nell Leyshon, described it as:

An original and gripping thriller which brilliantly explores both the powerful effect of sound on the listener, and how radio drama creates worlds of sound.

Julian is a well-established television director/writer whose manifold credits include Spooks, New Tricks, Hustle, etc. Julian diversified into radio in 2007 with his drama Fragments. He is currently developing a 6-part crime drama for BBC One and he has a movie, Run, in development with Potboiler Films.

The Tinniswood Award was established by the Society of Authors and the Writers’ Guild of Great Britain in memory of Peter Tinniswood. Previous winners include Morwenna Banks, Murray Gold, and Christopher William Hill. Find out more

We are grateful to the Authors’ Licensing and Collecting Society for their generous sponsorship, including the £1,500 prize.


30 Eggs is set in Rwanda, where Eoin has spent much of the past three years. It follows Modeste, a homeless man determined to return to his home village on the other side of the country, and his companion Innocent, a cheeky seven-year-old street orphan.

The panel of ten judges said of the debut drama:

A joyful, funny, picaresque story of an African journey and a wonderful depiction of friendship which gave us a different insight into Rwanda and exploited the possibilities of radio to the full.                                                  

Eoin has just returned to Dublin following three years living between Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo. A screenplay of 30 Eggs made the Brit List of best unproduced screenplays in the UK and Ireland, received a Tony Doyle Bursary in 2014 and is now in development as a feature film with Treasure Entertainment. Eoin is currently developing two feature films, Family Remains (Grand Pictures) and Stolen (Epos Films). (Photo credit: Lea Valentini.)

The Imison Award is administered by the Society of Authors and was founded in memory of Richard Imison. Previous winners include Lee Hall and Nell Leyshon.

We are grateful to The Peggy Ramsay Foundation for their generous sponsorship of the £1,500 prize.