A Taunton-based comedy competition has crowned its ninth annual champion.

Stand Up For Cider, a staple of the local scene, celebrated its grand final at The Creative Innovation Centre in Paul Street on November 24.

The event was hosted by the beloved resident presenter, David Arnold.

"He is just the best!", said Genius PR and Events owner Trish Caller.

"We all love him very much, such a brilliant entertainer with fresh, new material every time he performs on a Genius stage!"

Ms Caller also confirmed the show was sold out and the atmosphere was "electric."

The roaring energy seemed to extend to the front as well as the back of the room with acts "chatting and wishing each other luck" before their performances.

Nine acts contended for the coveted title, each representing winners and runners-up from this year's heats.

Despite all acts delivering their performance, the ultimate decision rested with the audience.

After the audience voting slips were collected, the scores were counted and finally the victors were announced.

Climbing up the ranks, Stephen Catling secured third place, with Billy James tailing in second.

However, the crown went to the well-deserved winner, Ben Ashurst.

Commemorating their success, all winners were gifted with some Sheppy's Cider.

Trish Caller also thanked the event's sponsors: Sheppy's Cider, Berrys Coaches, Somerset County Gazette, CICCIC, Design Bean, and Walpole Dunn Accountants.

Even though Walpole Dunn couldn't make it, they kindly donated their tickets to Reminiscence Learning, a local dementia charity.

Archie the Scarecrow, the charity's lovable mascot, took to the stage to collect money donations.