Cheshire-based Brio Leisure has been identified as one of Britain’s most 'inspirational' companies, in a report commissioned by the London Stock Exchange and backed by Prime Minister Teresa May.

The accolade comes just weeks after the community interest company, set up by Cheshire West and Chester Council to run its leisure and entertainment centres, was crowned the UK’s most outstanding health and fitness organisation by UK Active.

Brio, which has leisure centres in Northwich and Winsford, was included in the list of companies described by Mrs May as “exciting companies breaking new ground and making a real difference to the world around us.

“These small and medium-sized businesses (SMEs) are the backbone of our economy, providing the jobs that support families and communities and drive our country’s growth,” said the PM.

David Schwimmer, CEO of the London Exchange Group, which pulled together the “1,000 Companies That Inspire Britain” survey added: “Over two-thirds of the companies are newly identified in this report, which showcases the depth and breadth of high-growth British businesses across all sectors.

"Overall revenue growth of the companies featured in the report was 108 per cent, up significantly from 70 per cent last year. This trend is a real cause for celebration and is a measure of the immense contribution that these companies make to the economy overall.”

Brio Leisure managing director Elly McFahn said: “We want to make a real difference to local people’s health and wellbeing. We know we have a key role in helping with issues such as childhood obesity, sedentary lifestyles and social isolation and we can help reduce the strain on the NHS.

“We are thrilled to be highlighted as one of the country’s outstanding and most inspiring organisations – a wonderful testimony to our hard-working staff,” she added.