TWO East Lancashire pubs have been crowned winners in the latest edition of the Good Pub Guide.

The Inn at Whitewell and The Assheton Arms, both in the Ribble Valley, were named Pub of the Year and Dining Pub of the Year, respectively, in the 2020 edition of the prestigious best-selling travel magazine.

With Guardian columnist and food critic, Grace Dent, claiming that it would be ‘hard not to completely fall in love with it’, The Assheton Arms in Downham, was lauded for providing diners with the best dining experience all round.

General Manager, Robert Broadbent, said: “It’s a big deal for us and we’re all really excited about it.

“We’ve won Lancashire dining pub of the year before but not this national award.

“I think obviously the Guide were looking at the food and the setting and the whole package really.

“Nature has blessed us with a beautiful environment and our focus on the customer and the fact we use local ingredients really helps.

“I love the pub, and Downham, and customers who come here are spellbound by the beauty and I suppose we now have to try and match expectations and maintain our reputation with good old hospitality while striving to improve.”

Meanwhile, the Guide praised The Inn at Whitewell for its ‘olde worlde’ charm, piano for anyone to play, extensive wine list, top notch food and spectacular views.

Calling it ‘a very special place,’ they added: “The pubby main bar has roaring log fires in attractive stone fireplaces and heavy curtains on sturdy wooden rails.

“Early evening sees a cheerful bustle that later settles to a more tranquil and relaxing atmosphere.

“Every aspect of this lovely pub is truly first class.”

Owner of The Inn at Whitewell, Charles Bowman said: “We are chuffed to bits to win this award and it means a lot to us.

"We've been an entry in the Good Pub Guide since its inception and we are thrilled to win.

"There's a combination of things go into making a nice place like this but getting the simple things as good as you can get them really helps."