PUBS in Darwen are bucking the national trend, according to a councillor.

Despite a decline in the industry across the country, in recent months six pubs and one club in the town have been refurbished. And deputy chairman of Darwen Town Council Trevor Maxfield said it showed how well the town’s pubs were being run.

Blackburn brewery Thwaites-owned The Millstone, The Sunnyhurst and The Anchor have all recently reopened following extensive renovations, costing a combined £160,000. They joined The Swan, The Park and The Victoria, which all had work done to them, as well as Hollins Grove Conservative Club.

Earcroft councillor Trevor Maxfield said it was good to see the town’s pubs thriving. He said: “It would certainly appear that pubs in Darwen are bucking the national trend. All you hear about is that pubs are failing and a lot have closed down, but in Darwen things are looking good.

“When you look at some of our neighbouring towns, the pubs are very quiet, so landlords here must be doing something right. We have lost a few pubs in town over recent years but the ones that remain seem to be doing well.”

The manager of The Sunnyhurst in Tockholes Road, Katie Pilling, said: “As long as you can provide a nice setting and good beer, then people will come into your pub.

“We are lucky that the pub is in such a nice place, so we get a lot of passing trade from walkers and bikers. But we have a core of regulars who appreciate what we have tried to do since taking over here.”

Emma Whittaker, landlady of The Victoria in Sudell Road, said: “Doing up the pub shows people that you care and makes them want to come in.

“I always class this as a meeting pub. People meet up in here and sometimes stay all night and sometimes head into town.

“You have to make sure there is plenty going on. I have Sky for the football and I will give them some sandwiches at times and send round a football card.”