U3A Cockermouth drama group is celebrating after scooping three awards in its first drama festival at Lytham St Anne’s last weekend.

The U3A drama group - The Fit’n’Active Theatre Company, whose members are all of retirement age, won the best play award with their two-person entry "Theatrical Digs" by Jean McConnell, in the arts festival's one-act play section.

But the accolades did not end there. Of the eight awards up for grabs, Fit’n’Active went on to win a further two, with Amanda Dyer winning best female actor, and best female supporting actor taken by Alison Shutt.

Amanda said: "When the first award, for best play was announced, I was shocked and thrilled to hear that it was awarded to 'Theatrical Digs' Alison and I went on stage to collect it together, and I couldn’t stop shaking. To then hear my name called to collect best female actor was almost unbelievable."

Alison said: "I am beyond proud to have been a part of this and to be bringing the trophies back to Cockermouth, and to the group that made it possible. I hope Liz’s family will be proud too."

Director Stewart Grant said the success for the group is "a magnificent triumph."

The group was co-founded in January 2016 by Liz Fitton and Stuart Grant. Sadly, Liz Fitton was diagnosed with an aggressive cancer and died in November 2016, and the group decided to be known by its current, play-on-words title as a permanent tribute to Liz, her passion and her inspiration.

The group has become strong in productions and have performed 72 sketches at fourteen venues, with all of their material written by group members and raising thousands for Hospice at Home and MacMillan.

The group will be touring the local communities with its next production of home-grown sketches early in the New Year.