A pub could become a ‘leading premium venue’ in the Ribble Valley after a couple are calling last orders for the final time after 25 years.

Morag and Ian Gee have run The Stork Hotel in Read for over 25 years, but are now looking to move on to new avenues.

Following their departure, the Stork Hotel in Simonstone will be having a full refurbishment, with owners Thwaites saying it hopes the pub will become similar to the Holcombe Tap in Ramsbottom.

Andrew Buchanan, Director of Pubs and Brewing at Daniel Thwaites, commented: “Morag and Ian Gee have run The Stork Hotel in Read for over 25 years and have done a fantastic job serving their local community.

"After a quarter of a century, they have decided that it’s time to look for other avenues to explore.

"We respect that decision, thank them sincerely for all their hard work, and wish them all the best for the future.

"We believe that this is a wonderful opportunity to develop The Stork into a more contemporary pub which is focused on the expectations of today’s pubgoer.

"We would be very keen to work with a new operator to deliver that.”

Thwaites said after the ‘substantial investment’, the Stork Hotel will offer premium drinks and small plates in a bid to become ‘one of the leading premium venues in the Ribble Valley’.

Plans will also see the addition of four letting rooms and a manager flat.

The listing reads: “Following the refurbishment we expect the property to be one of the leading premium venues in the Ribble Valley.

“The property will be an evolution of the Holcombe Tap scheme, offering premium drinks and small plates.

“The addition of four letting bedrooms will attract customers from further afield, who wish to take advantage of the property’s excellent location.”

The Stork Hotel is firmly established within the local community, greeting regulars and visitors.

Thwaites hope that the refurbishment with the addition of the bedrooms will see more people from out of the area visit the site.

The pub has a five-star Cask Marque rating and was rewarded by Thwaites for serving the best pint in August.