A pub is set for a grand reopening later this month after being saved by a comedian.
Funnyman Colin Manford and wife Emma Kearney will take over the running of the Black Dog on Union Road in Oswaldtwistle, after they fell in love with the town while working with the Manfords Comedy Club.
Colin, whose older brother is fellow comedian Jason Manford, said he and Emma had been looking for a home to buy in the area.
He said: “We have been in love with Oswaldtwistle since we brought the Manfords Comedy Club out here and people don’t realise how special a place it is. It’s a great place with a good sense of community and it’s been a dream of mine for a long time to run a pub.”
Colin said he had been nagging Emma to buy a pub ever since they got together.
The couple, who married earlier this year and held their reception at the Civic, said the reaction from local people has been brilliant.
Colin said: “We’re going to have lots of things going on, live entertainment, open mic, pub quizzes and karaoke nights, it’s going to be brilliant.”
Emma said: “The pub has been there since the 1820s and we wanted to find out more about the history of the pub and the response we got on social media was just amazing.
“The brewery have been great and really supported us through the start-up.
“We want to bring back the Oswaldtwistle pub crawl and we’re keen to work with other pubs, and after the Manfords Comedy Club nights at the Civic, people can come down here and carry on their evening.”
Emma added: “Colin has been asking me about running a pub for as long as we’ve been together.
“We travel up and down the country but for the last year we have been looking to buy a house in Oswaldtwistle, and we couldn’t find anything, and maybe it was because we were destined to take over the pub.”
The news of Colin and Emma taking over the running of the pub has been welcomed.
Oswaldtwistle councillor Peter Britcliffe had raised concerns after a number of pubs in the town closed.
He said: “It’s so good to know that we are not going to have another empty pub in Union Road and I wish them the very best of luck.”
The Black Dog is set to reopen under Colin and Emma’s management on October 29.