Lillywhite, 28, from London, whose Foremost- Karrimor team has struggled to make an impression this season, escaped from a leading group of 11 riders with 10 miles left and crossed the line more than a minute clear.
He left Gary Coltman, of the rival Raleigh team, to salvage a sprint for second place from the amateur riders Ben Wilson and Dave Williams.
Choice Accountancy team- mates John Tanner and Simeon Hempsall, first and second overall in the Premier Calendar open series, had been unable to match Lillywhite's pace. They came in 10th and 11th respectively.
Tom Simpson, who until Chris Boardman and Sean Yates last week was the only Englishman to have worn the yellow jersey in the Tour de France, collapsed and died on the climb of Mont Ventoux in the 1967 race.Reuse content