Stand-up comic Nick Helm has won the award for best joke at this year's Edinburgh Fringe Festival.

Helm beat better-known acts including Tim Vine and Sarah Millican to the award - created by TV channel Dave.

He won the award for this joke: 'I needed a password eight characters long so I picked Snow White and the Seven Dwarves.'

A panel of ten comedy critics spent two weeks scouring venues in the city in a bid to find the best gags. Their top 30 were then put to a vote of 3,000 comedy fans.

Helm's show, Dare to Dream, marks a return to this year's festival for the stand-up who made his Edinburgh debut only last year.

'I knew my joke was the funniest joke of all the other jokes in 2011. Thank you to Dave and all the people that voted for proving me right.'

But there was bad news for veteran entertainer Paul Daniels, who won the wooden spoon for the worst joke of the festival.
He won the dubious honour for his gag: 'I said to a fella - Is there a B&Q in Henley?' He said - No, there's an H, an E, an N an L and a Y.'

'The competition to win Dave's Joke of the Fringe was hotly contested this year with 21,192 performers in more than 2,000 shows across 258 venues,' said Dave general manager Steve North.

Top 10 funniest jokes from the Fringe Festival 2011:

  • Nick Helm: 'I needed a password eight characters long so I picked Snow White and the Seven Dwarves.'
  • Tim Vine: 'Crime in multi-storey car parks. That is wrong on so many different levels.'
  • Hannibal Buress: 'People say 'I'm taking it one day at a time'. You know what? So is everybody. That's how time works.'
  • Tim Key: 'Drive-Thru McDonalds was more expensive than I thought ... once you've hired the car...'
  • Matt Kirshen: 'I was playing chess with my friend and he said, 'Let's make this interesting'. So we stopped playing chess.'
  • Sarah Millican: 'My mother told me, you don't have to put anything in your mouth you don't want to. Then she made me eat broccoli, which felt like double standards.'
  • Alan Sharp: 'I was in a band which we called The Prevention, because we hoped people would say we were better than The Cure.'
  • Mark Watson: 'Someone asked me recently - what would I rather give up, food or sex. Neither! I'm not falling for that one again, wife.'
  • Andrew Lawrence: 'I admire these phone hackers. I think they have a lot of patience. I can't even be bothered to check my OWN voicemails.'
  • DeAnne Smith: 'My friend died doing what he loved ... Heroin.'

Some of the worst jokes at the festival:

  • Tim Vine: 'Uncle Ben has died. No more Mr Rice Guy.'
  • Vladimir McTavish: 'The Lockerbie bomber put Lockerbie on the map, well he nearly took it off it too.'
  • Josh Howie: 'I've got nothing against the Chinese. Don't get me Wong.'
  • Card Ninja: 'I went to see this show and the guy said 'Hey kid do you like magic?' And I said 'Yeah!' So he asked if I wanted to see a trick and I said 'Yeah!' So he said 'think of a number, times it by two and if it's odd...' Oh no, he's a MATHmagician!'
  • Tom Webb: 'Due to the economy, profiteroles will now be called deficiteroles.'
  • Nathan Caton: 'Postcode wars? That sounds like a really s**t BBC game show.'
  • Andrew Bird: 'My wife's eating for two. She's not pregnant, just schizophrenic.'
  • Mark Olver: 'During my first murder I was like a dyslexic having my back teeth removed ... losing my morals.'
  • Andrew O'Neill: 'A song for the colour blind: And I think to myself ... why did I become a bomb disposal expert?'