The Golden Ball pub in Longton, near Preston was announced as the “Dog Friendly Business of the Year” in 2019’s Lancashire Tourism Awards held at the Blackpool Pleasure Beach Arena last week.
The Lancashire Tourism Awards pay tribute to all those working in Lancashire tourism, attracting and welcoming visitors to the county. The awards were judged against a criterion set by Visit Lancashire and included a mystery shop, written submission and a panel interview.
The Golden Ball pub sits at the very heart of the Longton community and Publicans Chris Buckley and Rebekah O’Connell are passionate about providing the very best experience for all their customers, including their four-legged friends.
One of the most loved events are Super Sundays. Super Sundays at The Golden Ball is an opportunity for people to come together and enjoy different events such as knitting, painting, crotchet and flower arranging. Chris and Rebekah are always keen to explore different ideas and happily open the pub doors, welcoming people to come and share their passion for the creative.
Super Sunday’s is also when the team host a friendly dog walking event. Once a month, customers and their dogs meet at the pub for a free bacon butty and a hot drink before embarking on a leisurely 7-mile walk around the beautiful Lancashire countryside. To allow every dog to be included in the walks, they have also set up an easier paced walk which is a more manageable 2-mile stroll. These events see as many as 35 dogs (and their owners) come along for a walk and has become so renowned that new customers are travelling from different cities around the UK to join in.
Dogs are always welcome at The Golden Ball; the pub provides water stations and wash stations for muddy paws. Dog beds and blankets are available for comfort. There are treats at the door for the well behaved and the pub also offers a specialised doggy menu.
The menu includes a choice of meat and fish served with all the trimmings of a traditional roast dinner. This has proved popular with customers and would certainly have made the Golden Ball stand out when judging the most dog friendly award category.
Publican Chris said “We were so excited to reach the finals of these prestigious awards but, to go on and win it was something else. I am so proud of the team and everything that we have created here. The Golden Ball is so much more than a pub to us, it is the hub of the community where everyone is welcome.”