The “nation’s favourite sausage” took a battering at the initial judging stage of the Chester Food Drink and Lifestyle Festival sausage competition.

A well-known, mass-produced brand of banger was included in the line-up for a blind taste test of products from the regjon’s top butchers.

And according to organisers it didn’t fare too well.

Festival and events manager, Briony Wilson, said: “I had seen an advertisement on television where a sausage maker was claiming they were the nation's favourite sausage.

“Given that we had over 50 years tasting experience on the panel I thought I would see just how the so-called nation's favourite sausage rated against our brilliant sausage makers.

“The nation’s favourite was the least favourite by a very long way and comments from the judges included ‘just awful’ and ‘totally wrong’.

“It was a glowing endorsement for the quality of sausage making by our local butchers.”

The judging held at the University of Chester’s NoWFOOD Centre focused on two categories of sausage, best plain sausage and best flavoured sausage.

A panel of eight judges led by chairman and four-time winner Steve Vaughan, of Vaughans Butchers, were asked to blind taste over 30 sausages from across Cheshire and North Wales.

The panel which included sausage expert Michael Muter and Dee 106.3 presenter Gavin Matthews chose three finalists from each category.

The best plain sausage butchers were; H.Clewlow of Nantwich and Hoole, Cheerbrooks Farm Shop in Nantwich and Handbridges’ Ernest W. Edge and son.

In the flavoured category Duttons Butchers of Kelsall, Cheerbrooks, and Muffs of Bromborough were chosen for the finals.

The six bangers will now compete in the Chester Food Drink and Lifestyle Festival which takes place from March 31 - April 2.

The winner will then go on to represent Cheshire in the national champion of champions contest in October.