Tuesday, 16 August 2011

Sun Hotel, Friargate, Preston

At long last the football season is upon us, the waiting is over.
The concept of ‘summer’ with long, lazy, free weekends to stroll in parks or laze in the sun is all well and good but in Britain it just doesn’t work.
Perhaps you will get a scorching hot day or two during the week which may raise hopes for a weekend of spirit-lifting sun, only for it to turn grey, miserable and uninspiring by Friday.
There are only so many disappointments one can take before losing faith in the heady romantic ideal that is summer.
Before long we are counting down the weekends before the start of the football season so we can forget all about sandcastles and sun cream.
A week ago proceedings, finally, proceedings got underway.
After going up to Carlisle on the Saturday to see my team Notts County play, a few friends and I headed into Preston on the Sunday to watch the Community Shield and headed for Sun Hotel, on Friargate.
Strangely for a pub in Preston city centre, I could not recall ever having been into it before and despite teetering right in the centre of the student area, it was filled with a healthy amount of thirsty regulars.
Taking aside a closely fought Manchester derby on the big screen, there is, in my opinion, a good reason the pub was so busy; it has been maintained as a locals’ pub.
While some in the area have been ripped up, torn apart, revamped and re-styled with bright colours and silly gimics, Sun Hotel has remained a simple straight forward pub.
It is quite a small place compared with somewhere like O’Neill’s nearby but has plenty of seating, a big screen with Sky Sports, a pool and table and several real ales.
With scarves around the pool table it also pledges its allegiance to Glasgow Celtic FC while much of the rest of the wall space it given over to those ubiquitous old scenes of Preston.
The notable difference here with every other pub in Preston is the pictures are also accompanied by good pieces of local history which are certainly worth a pause for thought.
With the Premier League about to roll into its second weekend and the weather urging us to forget it is August, the one place you might just find some summer fun is by sitting back and relaxing in the Sun.

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