DOZENS of enterprises across Blackburn with Darwen have been shortlisted for the borough's prestigious business awards.

Judges have selected candidates in 16 categories, which will be presented at a glittering ceremony at King George's Hall on June 27.

Another four titles - the creative and digital, Hive Business School, Arte et Labore and the chairman's awards - will be announced on the night.

New sponsors have also been unveiled for the awards in Star Tissue and the Eric Wright Group, with East Lancashire Chamber confirmed as a supporter.

Ian Brown, Hive Ambassadors Network chairman, said: "We've had some great entries this year and some categories, in particular, were incredibly hard to judge. The scoring has been really close.

"The finalists should all be hugely proud of the work they've done and they really show what amazing business talent we have in the area.

"They also are great examples of what our own Hive ethos is all about. Each finalist has not just worked to create a successful business they’ve also used that success to make a positive impact in the area, making it a better place to both live and work in."

Some of the standout competitions include the fight for the new business gong, with Blackburn Cathedral's Cathedra Gin, Piemezzanae, Sales Geek and Your Home Property Services vying for glory.

The entrepreneur crown is being eyed up by Caroline Cox, of Gifts@Ewood, Lancashare's Lisa Edge, Mohammed Gulzar, from Rhodium Insurance, Richard Few (Sales Geek), and Leanne Procter, of Unit-2 Fitness For Women.

And Curtis Law Solicitors, Rosslee Construction and Tensar are awaiting the outcome of the large business section. For tickets or more details go online to