Last Friday (November 22) saw the 11th annual Urban Music Awards held at London's Porchester Centre. Celebs including Laura Mvula, Ghetts, Diplo and newcomer Mike Hough were honoured at the ceremony, with awards being presented by the (slightly less urban) likes of Jasmin Walia of TOWIE fame and ex-X Factor contestants Kingsland Road.

The bar, an inconspicuous back room that could easily have been an annexe at a local church hall if it wasn't for the UMA livery, was buzzing with suited and booted (and a few scantily clad) figures from London's urban music scene. Oh, and Kingsland Road. I stopped for a brief chat with the boys to ask the deceptively innocent-looking Connor about his recent arm-breaking incident [an arm wrestle with illustrator Gordon Reid ended in disaster on a recent NME pub crawl when Reid's arm was inadvertently snapped by the boyband member].

"I was smashed," was his simple excuse. "I didn't know what to do but laugh. I hope he's alright, though." His bandmates Thompson and Josh were busy insisting that nobody referred to them as celebrities while helping themselves to the canapés being whirled in and out of the room by staff.

Opening the proceedings were intriguing girl band The Boxettes, who shrugged off their slightly cringeworthy entrance to the venue, which had photographers and journalists looking at each other blankly and mouthing "who?" If they didn't know who they were then, they will now. Their performance of discordant harmonies set to a sparse beat was impressive and far-removed from the sing-a-long pop fodder foisted on our ears by many a charting act. Not that I am adverse to chart pop, but The Boxettes displayed a refreshingly different style.

The hosts, founder Jordan Kensington and Cleopatra Woods, kept up their onstage banter throughout the evening, with Kensington keen to remind the audience that this years' event aimed to raise money for victims of Typhoon Haiyan, which recently devastated the Philippines. He pointed out the UMAs' ongoing commitment to charitable causes, saying: "We've worked with Oxfam, War Child and Unicef, among others, in the past. But this year is all about Project Philippines 2013."

The project, which is officially known by its hashtag #ProjectPhilippines2013, is an initiative set up by the team behind the UMAs. The total funds raised are as yet unknown.

The awards' self-proclaimed dedication to supporting up-and-coming artists was also evident throughout the night, with newbie Mike Hough picking up a gong for Best R&B act. Hough recently supported the reformed first incarnation of the Sugababes - now going by the moniker of Mutya Keisha Siobhan - on tour, after his YouTube covers of popular songs went viral. Fellow winner Fuse ODG bagged the Best Music Video award for his song 'Antenna' featuring Wyclef Jean, but failed to mention that he's also Mr Motivator's nephew. I can't imagine why he'd want to keep that quiet. Obscure celebrities didn't just come in the form of annual Urban Music Awards held at nominees' relatives, though - bizarrely, one of the awards was presented by ex- Liberal Democrat MP and former boyfriend of a Cheeky Girl, Lembit Opik.

Charlie Sloth, that shouty Radio 1 and 1Xtra DJ who looks a bit like James Corden, picked up a prize for Best Radio Show before making a swift exit, while Kiss FM was awarded Best Radio Station, Laura Mvula won Best Female and Avicii Best Electronic Act. A full list of winners can be seen on the Urban Music Awards' website.

Aside from the winners, highlights of the night came in form of overheard conversation from attendees. While visiting the toilet, I came across a lady reassuring her friend that yes, all the members of Kingsland Road are over 18, therefore it's fine to try and pull them. Later in the evening, a slightly nonplussed guest complained to his companion that it was 'all a bit Shoreditchy.' He may have been onto something - there was an unmistakable East London street-chic vibe floating around, but I had to wonder exactly what he expected from the Urban Music Awards aside from a celebration of urban music and culture, which often goes hand-in-hand with the buttoned-to-the-neck shirt and snapback look. Despite the odd 'are we meant to know this person?' moment when some guest presenters and nominees took to the stage, the quality of the performers - which also featured Ray Foxx and Rachel K Collier, Ghetts and soul singer Debra Debs - was consistent, and certainly not an exercise in A-list arse-kissing. Aspiring London-based musicians Luna Marie and Brad de Silva were nominated for the Ones to Watch award despite each having a minimal Twitter following (something that seems to be an important measure of success these days), again cementing the UMAs reputation as champions of new talent.

I never found out if the blonde in the toilet managed to get lucky with Kingsland Road, but I did come away thinking that even if it was all a bit Shoreditchy, that might not necessarily be a bad thing.