It's magic! Cor­po­ral Jones is BGT win­ner

Sunday Express - - FRONT PAGE - By Ben­jamin Rus­sell

‘I will work hard to be the best’

RICHARD JONES stormed to vic­tory in Bri­tain’s Got Tal­ent last night.

The ma­gi­cian won over the pub­lic and judges Si­mon Cow­ell, David Wal­liams, Ale­sha Dixon and Amanda Holden.

He had to bat­tle it out with 11 other acts, which in­cluded an im­pres­sion­ist, a trained dog and a sword swal­lower, to scoop the £250,000 prize and a spot on the Royal Va­ri­ety Per­for­mance.

Lance-Cor­po­ral Richard, a House­hold Cavalry bands­man, was the book­ies’ favourite to be crowned win­ner.

He ded­i­cated his act to 97-year-old ma­gi­cian Fer­gus Anck­orn who was taken pris­oner dur­ing the Sec­ond World War and sur­vived the no­to­ri­ous Burma Rail­way.

Richard, 25, dealt cards that co­in­cided with the dates and themes of Mr Anck­orn’s life story. And the vet­eran joined him on stage along with his reg­i­men­tal band.

The win­ner vowed to leave the Forces for a ca­reer in magic if of­fers came in after his tele­vi­sion suc­cess.

He said: “My fu­ture with the Army all de­pends on whether or not I get of­fered some­thing amaz­ing.

“I want to be known as one of the world’s best ma­gi­cians and I’ll work re­ally hard to get there.”

Last night’s live fi­nal kicked off with Welsh so­prano Kather­ine Jenk­ins who sang Rule Bri­tan­nia be­fore hand­ing over to hosts Ant and Dec.

Also mak­ing it to the fi­nal was 12-yearold singing sen­sa­tion Beau Der­mott. And co­me­dian David Wal­liams ended up cov­ered in wa­ter after jok­ing it was Amanda Holden’s last year as a judge.

David, 44, said he hoped Beau would win the con­test as it would be a nice way for Amanda, 45, to say good­bye to the show, de­spite her not ac­tu­ally leav­ing.

The 45-year-old is the only judge to have ap­peared on ev­ery se­ries.

View­ers were also treated to an ap­pear­ance by Diver­sity’s Ash­ley Banjo to mark the 10th an­niver­sary of the se­ries. The dance troupe won BGT in 2009.

The cur­rent se­ries has pulled in reg­u­lar au­di­ences of more than 10 mil­lion, with one edi­tion at­tract­ing al­most 12.5 mil­lion view­ers.

Last night’s fi­nal should beat this num­ber, but only when the full rat­ings have been cal­cu­lated.

Bri­tain’s Got Tal­ent 2015 had of­fi­cial rat­ings of 12.75 mil­lion.

Also mak­ing the ITV fi­nal were mar­ried cou­ple Shan­non and Peter Parker, who were the judges’ pick for one of the wild card places, with dog act Lucy and Trip Hazard the pub­lic choice.

They were up against 100 Voices of Gospel, and mother and son singing duo Mel and Jamie.

Wayne Wood­ward, the Danny Dyer sound-alike, was the pub­lic’s choice in the sec­ond semi-fi­nal. Alex Ma­gala from Moldova wowed the crowd with his death-de­fy­ing sword swal­low­ing stunts.

WHAT A CARD: Richard Jones was the book­ies’ favourite be­fore his win last night

PUTTING ON THE WA­TER­WORKS: Amanda Holden shows David who’s boss

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