End of an era as pub landlord calls time

Steve and Heather Melling will be retiring from The Gables pub in Leyland after 31 years in January
Steve and Heather Melling will be retiring from The Gables pub in Leyland after 31 years in January
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It’s last orders for one of Leyland’s longest serving landlords.

Steve and Heather Melling have been at the helm of the Gables pub, Hough Lane, for 31 years and have built up a rapport with punters.

And 67-year-old Steve admitted the hardest thing about retiring will be leaving the people.

He said: “I think we are the longest serving landlords in Leyland – it is the end of the era.

“We will miss the people and the customers the most.”

The married duo were born and bred in Leyland and have become part of the town’s furniture thanks to the town centre pub.

They have seen the town change over the years after Steve became a publican after leaving the town’s famous vehicle manufacturer Leyland Motors.

Steve said: “We knew Leyland Motors was going to close down so I had to find another profession.

“I decided to get a pub in 1983 and we have been here ever since.

“We have seen so many changes and I have got to say the town is not as good as it was 30 years ago – but that is progress for you.”

The pub owners are famous for refusing to become an ‘all day pub’ when the licensing laws changed.

Steve said: “We didn’t want to open the pub all day because you attract the wrong sort.”

The husband and wife team are set to leave the award winning pub and pull their last pint in January.

And Steve believes now is the right time to hang up his boots.

He said: “We have won lots of awards over the years but it will be our last Christmas at the pub.

“It has been a nice time but there comes a time when you have to stop.

“I’m 68 next birthday and it is time to give someone else a go.

“The pub will not close it will be leased out.”