The 2012 British Comedy Awards took place in London on Wednesday night - and there were some surprise winners among the results.

Julia Davis's spoof period drama 'Hunderby' beat off stiff competition from the likes of 'The Thick Of It' and 'Twenty Twelve' to win both Best New Comedy Programme and Best Sitcom - and in doing so, marked a real coup for Sky.

'The Thick Of It' went on to win awards for its two main leads, however: Peter Capaldi for Best Comic Actor ("I am now officially funny") and Rebecca Front for Best Comic Actress - who beat off twice-nominated Olivia Colman, and thanked her "long-suffering husband" and the BBC ("We are bloody lucky to have them").

Best Comedy Entertainment Personality went not to the family-friendly Stephen Fry, Graham Norton or Harry Hill, but to '10 O'Clock Live' and Newswipe's Charlie Brooker. Young Jack Whitehall, meanwhile, beat the likes of Alan Carr, Sarah Milican and Graham Norton to win the people's vote and be named the King Of Comedy. "This feels a little bit like when TOWIE got a Bafta," acknowledged the 'Fresh Meat' star.

british comedy awards

Sacha Baron Cohen brings back his Ali G character and is pictured with Sir Ben Kingsley

Jo Brand was named Best Female TV Comic, while Lee Mack won the Best Male TV Comic award. E4's 'Cardinal Burns' won Best Sketch Show; and the Best Comedy Breakthrough Artist went to talented impressionist-actress Morgana Robinson.

In two bittersweet moments, 'Harry Hill's TV Burp'- which has reached the end of its run - won Best Comedy Entertainment Programme, and Vic Reeves and Bob Mortimer - whose 'Shooting Stars' was axed this time last year by the BBC - received the Writer's Guild of Great Britain Award. Reeves and Mortimer thanked the many people who had contributed to their success, including host Jonathan Ross "'cos he made it happen... And Jools Holland. And Glenn Tilbrook."

And in true British rewarding-those-who-have-made-it-big style, the Outstanding Contribution Award went to Sacha Baron-Cohen. Accepting his gong from Ben Kingsley, and in the guise of Ali G - a character we haven't seen in years - Baron-Cohen said: "I is grown up now! I ain't living in my nan's house anymore. I am living in her garage".

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  • UK Comedy Awards - London

    Rebecca Front arriving for the UK Comedy Awards, at Fountain Studios in Wembley, north London.

  • UK Comedy Awards - London

    Vic Reeves and wife Nancy Sorrell arriving for the UK Comedy Awards, at Fountain Studios in Wembley, north London.

  • UK Comedy Awards - London

    Julia Davis arriving for the UK Comedy Awards, at Fountain Studios in Wembley, north London.

  • UK Comedy Awards - London

    Steve Coogan arriving for the UK Comedy Awards, at Fountain Studios in Wembley, north London.

  • UK Comedy Awards - London

    Kelly Brook and Leigh Francis (right) arriving for the UK Comedy Awards, at Fountain Studios in Wembley, north London.

  • UK Comedy Awards - London

    Morgana Robinson arriving for the UK Comedy Awards, at Fountain Studios in Wembley, north London.

  • UK Comedy Awards - London

    John Lithgow arriving for the UK Comedy Awards, at Fountain Studios in Wembley, north London.

  • UK Comedy Awards - London

    Cuba Gooding Jr arriving for the UK Comedy Awards, at Fountain Studios in Wembley, north London.

  • British Comedy Awards 2003

    Actor John Thomson and girlfriend Samantha Sharp arrive for the annual British Comedy Awards at London Television Studios in south London.

  • UK Comedy Awards - London

    Jack Whitehall and Gemma Chan arriving for the UK Comedy Awards, at Fountain Studios in Wembley, north London.

  • UK Comedy Awards - London

    David Mitchell and wife Victoria Coren arriving for the UK Comedy Awards, at Fountain Studios in Wembley, north London.

  • UK Comedy Awards - London

    Charlie Brooker and wife Konnie Huq arriving for the UK Comedy Awards, at Fountain Studios in Wembley, north London.

  • UK Comedy Awards - London

    Kayvan Novak (left, star of Fonejacker) arriving for the UK Comedy Awards, at Fountain Studios in Wembley, north London.

  • UK Comedy Awards - London

    Robert Webb and wife Abigail Burdess arriving for the UK Comedy Awards, at Fountain Studios in Wembley, north London.

  • UK Comedy Awards - London

    Kimberly Wyatt (left) and Ashley Roberts arriving for the UK Comedy Awards, at Fountain Studios in Wembley, north London.

  • UK Comedy Awards - London

    Julian Barratt and Julia Davis arriving for the UK Comedy Awards, at Fountain Studios in Wembley, north London.