LEIGH'S first independent cinema has been recognised with a prestigious award at a national film ceremony.

Starting out as a small film club out of a cafe in Tyldesley, Leigh Film Society has become a revered and respected independent cinema over the past ten years.

Now operating out of the creative hub inside Leigh Spinners Mill, Leigh Film Society won 'Film Society Of The Year at the national Cinema For All Awards last week.

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Leigh Journal: The volunteer led team said they are honoured with the recognitionThe volunteer led team said they are honoured with the recognition (Image: Leigh Film Society)

It is the second time the local film society has won the award and the volunteers behind the project said they are honoured with the recognition.

Leigh Film Society volunteer Kevin Lowe also received an outstanding contribution award at the same event.

Leigh Journal: Kevin Lowe was also recognised for outstanding contribution in independent cinemaKevin Lowe was also recognised for outstanding contribution in independent cinema (Image: Leigh Film Society)

Elizabeth Costello, Development Director at Leigh Film Society, said: "We are delighted to receive the Film Society of the Year award again, especially in the year we celebrate our 10th anniversary.

"It is an honour to receive this for our town [and] none of this would be possible without the hard work and commitment of Leigh Film Society's amazing volunteer team."

Leigh Journal: Elizabeth with the 'Film Society of The Year' awardElizabeth with the 'Film Society of The Year' award (Image: Leigh Film Society)

Since launching the 'Film Factory' at Spinners Mill in September, the film society has been able to screen a wide movie programme for people of all ages in Leigh; including new releases, blockbusters and classics, as well as short and independent films.

In August, there will also be two exclusive screenings of 'Kes', followed up with a live Q&A with actor David Bradley - A.K.A Billy Casper.

With the Film Factory funded entirely through public donations and built almost exclusively with recycled materials, the creative organisation was also recognised for its environmental credentials at the Cinema For All awards.

Leigh Journal: The publicly funded and upcycled cinema in Leigh Spinners MillThe publicly funded and upcycled cinema in Leigh Spinners Mill (Image: Leigh Film Society)

Speaking about the work of Leigh Film Society, a Cinema For All spokesperson said: "This group has been delivering community cinema for nearly ten years, starting in 2013 from a small café with no name, growing to national acclaim and to a new, built for purpose venue - all because it was clear that their community wanted and needed somewhere to watch great films together. 

"Throughout their decade in operation, they have faced many, repeated challenges, such as funding and venue availability, forcing them to be creative, resourceful and insistent.

"In recent years they pooled those resources to build their new cinematic home. A home built on a shoestring budget, with a green ethos at its heart, and funded from small investments and community donations. 

"The cinema seats were donated from the London Science Museum and all wood is recycled from the floorboards of the old mill. It stands as testament to the hard work and commitment of volunteers and film lovers everywhere. 

"Using previously loved materials, the love of the community, and the love of film, they have created a permanent home for cinema in their town. A dream for many of us and an inspiration to us all."