A CURRY restaurant is celebrating after winning the ‘best restaurant’ category in County Durham.

Le Raaj, based at Chester Moor, near Chester-le-Street, scooped the prize in the annual Curry Life Awards in London.

The annual industry awards were held in a glittering ceremony at central London’s Hotel Hilton on Park Lane.

More than 800 people attended the gala evening hosted by TV presenters Cathy Newman and Adam Shaw.

The 130-seat restaurant opened in 2010 and underwent a major refurbishment last year.

Owner Rezwan Ahmed said: “I’m really passionate about food and love being a restaurateur.

“I don’t think you can succeed in this market without giving it everything you’ve got.”