One of Lancashire’s leading business awards is open for applications from firms and individuals across the county.

The Be Inspired Business Awards, the BIBAs, has opened for applications today with 18 prizes up for grabs to all sizes and sectors of the local economy.

Cuadrilla Resources, the firm behind plans to create a multi-billion pound shale gas industry in Lancashire, is the headline sponsor for the awards.

Chief Executive Francis Egan said he was proud to be supporting the awards which supports the growth of many of the county’s top firms through its BIBAs Academy, a package of masterclasses open to all winners.

He said: “Cuadrilla has been a long-time supporter of the BIBAs because we recognise not only how it supports and celebrates businesses in Lancashire, but how it fosters growth in the county.

“We hope through our work to be able to create huge opportunities for firms in this area, whether they are professional firms, engineering businesses or the service sector.

“Through its awards, the BIBAs throws the spotlight on all parts of the Lancashire economy and gives companies large and small an opportunity to shine. I would encourage every firm to get an application in this year.”

The awards have categories including Leisure Business of the Year, Construction Business of the Year, Third Sector Business of the Year and the Most Inspiring Young Person.