PIE lovers enjoyed the finest pastry, meat and jelly during the launch of the Lancashire Pork Pie Appreciation Society.

The group is now up and running at its headquarters in the Black Bull at Edgworth, where they meet weekly to taste pies from across Lancashire.

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President Carl Abbott said the idea for the society came when regulars at the pub began talking about their favourite food.

He said: “We all get talking about food sometimes and we all have our favourite pie shops and it just grew from those discussions.

“The thing with pork pies is that you can bring them into the pub with you – they don’t need heating or anything.

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“We started it as just a bit of fun but there is something more to it because there are local family businesses who make them.”

The group had its first meeting on Monday and gathered around the table to try out some of the local delicacies.

Each week they will give the featured pie a rating for pastry, pork and jelly then they calculate an overall score.

During the first meeting pies from Nicholsons Butchers in Nelson were put to the test.

The group is currently 10-strong but Mr Abbott said he is looking for more members.

He said: “The first meeting went really well and everyone enjoyed it.

“The pies were great.

“This isn’t really something you can take too seriously, it’s a simple pleasure.”

Mr Abbott reckoned there’s a a difference between pies from the north and south.

The 54-year-old said: “For what it’s worth, pork pies in the north are far better than the ones in the south.

“But they are different as they use un-pulled pork whereas Lancashire and Yorkshire tend to use pulled pork.

“The society is just something that will get people to appreciate what they can get in Lancashire.”

The group will be meeting every first and third Monday of the month at the Black Bull at around 9.30pm.

Anyone wanting more information can email lancsporkpies@gmail.com.