The big songwriting prize was presented by Eric Clapton. Sheeran, who was largely overlooked at the BRITs, said the Ivors was the “only awards show I really care about”.
Sheeran, whose stadium tour resumes at Hampden Park on June 1, also won in the PRS For Music Most Performed Work category for Shape Of You. He joined co-writers Johnny McDaid and Steve Mac to collect the award.
“This song has changed my life,” said Mac.
Best Contemporary Song went to Question Time by Dave and co-writer Fraser T Smith. As he collected the award, Dave gave a shout out to fellow nominee Stormzy, who also has a longstanding studio partnership with Fraser T Smith.
Stormzy did win the Album Award for his debut Gang Signs & Prayer, which triumphed at the BRITs earlier this year.
“Yes! Very, very happy right now,” said the grime star, who praised Atlantic label mate Sheeran but added that he was “coming for you next year”.
The Best Original Film Score Ivor went to Mica Levi for Jackie, while Best Television Soundtrack was awarded to Dan Jones for The Miniaturist.
Best Original Video Game Score went to the composers of Horizon Zero Dawn, Joris de Man, Alexis Smith and Joe Henson.
The 63rd edition of the Ivors was staged by BASCA in association with PRS For Music. To be eligible for the awards, songs had to be commercially released in the UK in 2017 and have a British or Irish songwriting or composing contribution of at least one third.
As well as the seven nominated categories, BASCA also presented special awards in recognition of a wider contribution British music – including Sheeran’s Songwriter Of The Year honour.
A tearful Billy Ocean received the award for International Achievement in recognition of his enduring career. The audience showed their appreciation with a standing ovation.
“It’s about time somebody awarded me something like this,” Ocean told Music Week. “My first successful record was in 1979.”
Billy Bragg was honoured with the PRS For Music Outstanding Contribution To British Music Award.
“I suppose I’ve achieved a level of social comment that is starting to come around again,” he told Music Week. “We’re living in political times – grime artists particularly are making music with edge.”
Other winners included Cathy Dennis (Outstanding Song Collection), Lionel Richie (PRS For Music Special International Award) and composer Thea Musgrave, who received the Ivors Classical Music Award days after her 90th birthday.
Shane MacGowan was honoured with The Ivors Inspiration Award.
BASCA chairman Crispin Hunt opened proceedings with a speech that referenced crack cocaine and the creativity of accountants. On a more serious note, he celebrated the fact that “the public have actually started paying for music again”.
“We are definitely on the right track,” he said, referencing recent developments including expanded songwriter credits by YouTube and Spotify.
The full list of winners from the 2018 Ivor Novello Awards is below:
BEST SONG MUSICALLY AND LYRICALLY
Magnificent (She Says)
Written by Guy Garvey, Craig Potter, Mark Potter and Pete Turner
Performed by Elbow
Published in the UK by Salvation Music Ltd - Warner/Chappell
BEST CONTEMPORARY SONG
Written by Dave and Fraser T Smith
Performed by Dave
Published in the UK by Warner/Chappell Music Ltd and Kobalt Music Publishing
PRS FOR MUSIC MOST PERFORMED WORK
Shape Of You
Written by Steve Mac, Johnny McDaid and Ed Sheeran
Performed by Ed Sheeran
Published in the UK by Rokstone Music - Universal Music Publishing, Spirit B-Unique - Polar Patrol and Ed Sheeran Limited - Sony/ATV Music Publishing (UK) Ltd
Gang Signs & Prayer
Written by Michael 'Stormzy' Omari
Performed by Stormzy
Published in the UK by Warner/Chappell Music Ltd
BEST ORIGINAL FILM SCORE
Composed by Mica Levi
Published in the UK by Beggars Music
BEST TELEVISION SOUNDTRACK
Composed by Dan Jones
Published in the UK by Faber Music and Sony/ATV
BEST ORIGINAL VIDEO GAME SCORE
Horizon Zero Dawn
Composed by Joris de Man, Joe Henson and Alexis Smith
International Achievement – Billy Ocean
Outstanding Song Collection – Cathy Dennis
PRS For Music Outstanding Contribution To Music – Billy Bragg
PRS For Music Special International Award – Lionel Richie
Songwriter Of The Year 2017 – Ed Sheeran
Ivors Classical Music Award – Thea Musgrave
The Ivors Inspiration Award – Shane MacGowan