A BAKER who died just after celebrating 30 years at the helm of his family business has been honoured.

Bill Oddie, who ran Oddie's Bakers, was given the Chairman’s Lifetime Achievement Award at the Pendle Business Awards, which took place at the Fence Gate Inn.

BBC North West Tonight’s Beccy Barr hosted the black-tie event organised jointly by Pendle Council and Pendle Vision Board.

Presenting the Award, Dennis Mendoros, OBE DL, Chairman of Pendle Vision Board and President of Mendor Enterprises, said: “Just days after celebrating 30 years at the helm of East Lancashire's best-known bakeries, Mr Oddie, passed away at the age of 76.

“He owned a baker's dozen of outlets across the region, including Blackburn, Nelson and Accrington, and steered the 113-year-old firm through recession.

“Bill's passion for business is only matched for the love of his family – his daughter Lara Oddie played a pivotal role alongside her father.”

Lara accepted the award on behalf of her dad. She said: “I’m honoured to accept this Award on behalf of my dad.

“This would have been very special to him!”

The Awards, now in their sixth year, celebrate those businesses which have great ambition and are highly skilled in their sectors.

Some are trading locally and globally and many have strong specialisms, including precision engineering and logistics.

Dean Langton, Chief Executive of Pendle Council added: “Congratulations to all our winners and those who made the shortlist.

“A big thank you to Pennine Events and our Business Support Team for making sure this year’s Pendle Business Awards was professionally organised and thank you to everyone who sponsored the evening – it really helped to make it a very memorable one!”

Amanda Melton, Principal and Chief Executive of Nelson and Colne College, also received a Chairman’s Award for Lifetime Achievement.

When announcing the Award, Dennis said: “Amanda’s role is pivotal in ensuring that we have the skills needed in Pendle to support the businesses based here.

“As Chair of the Lancashire LEP Skills and Employment Board she identifies and addresses the skill needs of the county to support its growth plans.

“And as Principal of Lancashire Adult Learning she provides community learning in more than 300 venues across Lancashire.”

Amanda said: “I’m absolutely thrilled to be recognised with the Lifetime Achievement Award – this was completely unexpected and such a wonderful surprise on the night.

"I am honoured and extremely proud to be considered for such an accolade at the Pendle Business Awards.

“This achievement, however, is not just for me – it is also for the team of dedicated and professional staff that work tirelessly at Nelson and Colne College and Lancashire Adult Learning year after year to raise the aspirations and improve the lives of people living in and around Pendle.”

Businesses helped to raise £2,000 on the night for this year’s nominated charity SSAFA The Armed Forces Charity which helps the Armed Forces, veterans and their families in Lancashire.

Many local companies and organisations sponsored the event.

Business Person of the year - sponsored by Pendle Engineering

Frazer Durris at Businesswise Solutions

Employer of the year - sponsored by Protec

XLCR Vehicle Management

Business of the Year Award - med/large (51+ employees) – sponsored by UClan

Marsden Building Society

Business of the Year Award – small (1-50 employees) – sponsored by Pendle Vision

Fence Gate Inn

Rising Star of the Year – sponsored by Barnfield Construction

Wise Owl Creative

Technology and Innovation Business of the Year – sponsored by Riggs Autopack

Pendle Engineering Ltd

Manufacturer of the Year – sponsored by BusinessWise Solutions

Riggs Autopack Ltd

Apprentice of the Year – sponsored by Nelson and Colne College

Brad Ram – Blackoak Surfacing

Making a Local Difference – sponsored by Nelson Town Council

Pendleside Hospice

Chairman’s Award for Lifetime Achievement – sponsored by Pendle Vision

In memory of Bill Oddie, Oddie’s Bakery