Lily Allen leads the way at the Ivor Novellos

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A group of virtual unknowns championed on Twitter by Stephen Fry will battle it out with chart star Lily Allen for a top songwriting award.

Patch William - formed by four ex-Bristol University students - are nominated for 'best song musically and lyrically' at this year's Ivor Novello Awards.

Allen and grime star Dizzee Rascal lead the way with two nods each.

The Leisure Society are nominated for a second year running, last year they were recognised despite being unpublished musicians, while the band's songwriter/guitarist Nick Hemming worked in a warehouse.

Patch William - up against Lily's track The Fear and Leisure Society's Save It For Someone Who Cares - have been nominated for their track The Last Bus, released as a single this week.

The group said: "We are a relatively unknown band on an independent label. When we recently signed with Chrysalis Music, we looked starry-eyed at the two Ivor Novello statues at the entrance. Not in our wildest dreams did we imagine that we'd be nominated."

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