George Michael was yesterday honored at the Radio Academy's Music Radio conference in London as most-played artist on British radio of the last 20 years. Michael was present to accept the Phonographic

George Michael was yesterday honored at the Radio Academy's Music Radio conference in London as most-played artist on British radio of the last 20 years. Michael was present to accept the Phonographic Performance Ltd (PPL) award from its chairman/CEO Fran Nevrkla.

Although artists have previously been recognized for U.K. airplay over the prior 12 months, this marks the first time that data has been aggregated by the PPL collecting society over such a long period. Michael beat other perennial British radio favorites Elton John and Robbie Williams to the award.

The most-played chart was collated from information collected from national and local radio across the country, spanning over 600 BBC and commercial radio stations. Radio Academy director John Bradford describes the research as "an interesting snapshot of which artists have most shaped popular culture, as the number of radio stations both competing for our attention and playing their material has spiraled."

Also during the conference, Chris Wright, chairman of London-based independent music company Chrysalis Group, was presented with the Performing Right Society (PRS)-sponsored award for outstanding contribution to music radio.

Wright was on hand to receive the accolade from Beatles producer Sir George Martin and PRS executive director John Axon. Previous recipients include DJ Pete Tong, and radio presenters Chris Tarrant and Bob Harris.