David Tennant Tells Tory Politician Kemi Badenoch to ‘Shut Up’ in British LGBT Awards Speech

In a fiery and impassioned speech at the British LGBT Awards, David Tennant, renowned for his role as Doctor Who, took a bold stand, telling Tory politician Kemi Badenoch to “shut up.” Tennant, honored as a celebrity ally for his steadfast support of the trans community, made his remarks while accepting his award at the prestigious ceremony.

The star-studded event, attended by the likes of Rylan Clark, Katherine Ryan, Emma Willis, Scott Mills, and Bruno Tonioli, saw Tennant express his gratitude and reflect on the significance of the recognition. “I am honored to receive this, I’m thrilled to be here and to be a part of this night,” he began, receiving the award from Katherine Ryan, who was the recipient of the same accolade in 2023.

Tennant took a moment to praise his wife, Georgia Tennant, for her role in his journey towards greater empathy and understanding. “My brilliant wife Georgia… educated me about empathy and understanding and she has been a huge educator for me,” he shared. However, he lamented that the basic acknowledgment of everyone’s right to live as they wish without harming others should not warrant special recognition. “It’s common sense, isn’t it? It is human decency. We shouldn’t live in a world where that is worth remarking on.”

In his speech, Tennant referenced Badenoch, the Minister for Women and Equalities since 2022, who recently spoke about plans to amend the 2010 Equality Act to define sex as biological sex. This proposed change could restrict trans women’s access to women-only spaces, a move criticized for potentially endangering vulnerable individuals.

“Until we wake up and Kemi Badenoch doesn’t exist anymore… I don’t wish ill of her, I just wish her to shut up,” Tennant declared, addressing the audience. His remarks drew significant attention, both support and criticism, highlighting the ongoing debates surrounding LGBTQ+ rights and women’s spaces.

Badenoch quickly responded on social media, stating, “I will not shut up. I will not be silenced by men who prioritize applause from Stonewall over the safety of women and girls.” She criticized Tennant for attacking her, framing his comments as an example of what life might be like under a Labour government, which she claims would allow bigots and bullies to win.

Good Morning Britain host Susanna Reid also weighed in, expressing empathy for Badenoch’s perspective while emphasizing the importance of staying reasonable in discussions about women’s and trans rights.

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak added his voice to the controversy, underscoring the value of free speech and cautioning against silencing differing opinions.

Despite the heated exchange, Tennant remained resolute in his support for the LGBTQ+ community, expressing his pride and joy at receiving the award. “Pride is very important in our house. It’s a family affair. We have skin in the game. This event tonight thrills me. It gives me hope, it gives me fire, it gives me energy and deep joy,” he said.

The British LGBT Awards celebrated its 10th anniversary this year, with Julian Clary hosting the ceremony. Other notable winners included Rylan Clark, who received the Celebrity of the Year award, and the late Robin Windsor, honored posthumously with a standing ovation as his family accepted the award on his behalf.

The event also saw Tesco, BT Group, Transport for London, and Financial Times among others winning corporate awards for their commitment to promoting equality and diversity within the LGBTQ+ community.

British LGBT Awards founder, Sarah Garrett MBE, celebrated the milestone, stating, “We are delighted to honor those who have demonstrated an unwavering commitment to advancing LGBT+ rights, whether in the public eye, behind the scenes or in the face of adversity.”

As the night concluded, it was clear that the British LGBT Awards remains a vital platform for recognizing and celebrating the ongoing fight for equality and the allies who support this cause passionately and publicly.

Full list of 2024 British LGBT Awards winners:

Posthumous Award – Robin Windsor (accepted by Lisa Riley) 

Celebrity Ally – David Tennant 

Broadcaster, Journalist and Host – Bruno Tonioli

Music Artist – Cat Burns

LGBT+ Celebrity – Rylan Clark

Media Moment – Jordan Sangha and Henry Southan 

Influencer – Charlie Craggs

Sports Personality – Lianne Sanderson

METRO LGBT+ Advocate Award – Scott Mills

Lifetime Achievement – Marc Almond

Trailblazer Award – Laks Mann            

Diversity Hero – Zoe Megins-Davies (ARUP)

Inspirational Leader – Jim Ford (AO Shearman)

Future Leader – Amelia Mugridge (Serco) & Jamie Brown (Financial Times)

Community Winner – Proud 2 B Parents 

Outstanding Contribution – Sue Sanders (Schools OUT & founder of LGBT History Month in UK)

Business Ally – Adrian Mardell (JLR)

Network Group or ERG – The HSBC UK Pride Employee Network (HSBC UK)

Inclusive Employer or Company – Tesco   

Special Mention – Legal & General