EAST Lancashire has swept all before it in the county’s annual tourism Oscars.

No fewer than 13 prizes have been secured by local attractions and venues in the Marketing Lancashire gongs.

Ghost walks aficionado Simon Entwistle is also thought to be the first individual to be named Lancashire’s tourism superstar.

Simon, who runs Top Hat Tours, first secured the prize in 2013 and has been regularly nominated since, before his latest triumph.

His victory came in the only category to be decided by a public vote, pipping Lancashire Life’s Roger Borrell and Barbara Bryan, of Mytton Fold Hotel, to the top spot.

He said: “I’ve had a lot of support from people across East Lancashire and I just want to thank everyone who has supported me and made this possible.”

Elsewhere Blackburn Cathedral was picked as the red rose county’s leading cultural venue and the town’s Festival of Making walked away with the large event prize.

Rachel McQueen, Chief Executive of Marketing Lancashire welcomed guests saying: “A thriving Lancashire tourism sector contributes to the economy, to employment, to the culture, the quality of life and the prosperity of Lancashire.

“The Lancashire Tourism Awards reminds us of the diversity the county has and how privileged we are to have such amazing experiences to offer visitors.”

For wedding venues, Holmes Mill in Clitheroe, saw off the likes of Stanley House in Mellor and the Fisherman’s Retreat at Ramsbottom.

The fledgling Lawrence Hotel, in Padiham, earned the best newcomer title, ahead of Fence Gate Lodge and A’Vucciria in Rawtenstall, among others.

And in the hotly-contested Taste Lancashire pub or inn section, The Spread Eagle at Sawley won out amid a clutch of East Lancs entrants. In a good night for the team there, they also were crowned the Lancashire Perfect Stay champions.

Boutique gin outfit Batch Brew, in Burnley, pocketed the Taste Lancashire Producer Award, while Laythams Holiday Lets Retreat in Slaidburn had the self-catering category sewn up and the leading dog-friendly place at Rossendale Holiday Cottages.

East Lancashire Railway, which runs between Rawtenstall and Ramsbottom, was placed first by judges as the best large visitor attraction, and Chorley Live had the small event trophy in the bag.