Entertainment & Arts

Quentin Blake wins Prince Philip Designers Prize

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Media captionIllustrator Quentin Blake has been awarded the 2011 Prince Philip Designers Prize

Illustrator Quentin Blake has been awarded this year's Prince Philip Designers Prize.

Best known for his characterful work in Roald Dahl's books, Blake beat fashion designer Paul Smith and milliner Stephen Jones to win the award.

"Illustration is a strange cousin in the family, so to appear alongside other kinds of designers... is very gratifying," he told the BBC.

He was presented the award by the Duke of Edinburgh in London.

Other nominees included included architect Sir David Chipperfield and medical prosthetic designer Saeed Zahedi, who both received special commendations from the judges at the ceremony, held at the Design Council.

Since his first drawings appeared in Punch more than 60 years ago, Blake has become recognised around the world.

Image caption The Duke of Edinburgh presented Blake with the award

As well as illustrating for other children's authors like Michael Rosen and Joan Aiken, he also created his own characters including Mister Magnolia, Mrs Armitage and Clown.

He also became the first ever Children's Laureate in 1999.

The prize was created by Prince Philip in 1959 as a response to post-war austerity. It was aimed at stimulating and rewarding elegant solutions to design problems.

He has led the judging panel ever since, but Blake's award will be the last the royal will present, as he begins to scale down his public duties.

Previous winners of the prize include Bill Moggridge, who designed the world's first laptop; architect Lord Foster; Habitat founder Sir Terence Conran and inventor Sir James Dyson.

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