Generous community rallies round pub after arson attack

The licencee said she was left 'overwhelmed' by the kindness of people in the local area.

Monday, 7th June 2021, 9:35 am
Updated Monday, 7th June 2021, 9:36 am

The beer garden at The Spinners Arms in Leigh was torched in a deliberate incident in the early hours of the morning last week.

Lynda Ramsdale, who has been in charge at the Firs Lane watering hole for about seven and a half years, posted pictures of the charred wreckage on Facebook

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Lynda Ramsdale in the beer garden at The Spinners Arms in Leigh

And extraordinarily the group of volunteers had the beer garden spick and span once more in time for the boozer to reopen at noon.

Lynda said: “The fire happened at around 2am and at 6am we got a phone call from someone who had seen it saying our marquee had been set on fire.

“Everything was burnt to smithereens. The carpeting on the floor had been burned, the marquee had melted, there was smoke everywhere. All that was left was the shell of the marquee. We were devastated.

“I put it on Facebook and within an hour or so people were just turning up. Vans turned up to get rid of all the furniture.

The beer garden at The Spinners Arms following the arson attack

“There were 16 of us in the yard. People were painting and getting all the rubbish swept up. The community donated tables and we also had some delivered from another pub in Burnley.

“Everybody who came out then joined us for a drink in the garden to show they were here. We opened at 12 o’clock that day.

“It still makes me cry just talking about it. I’m just so emotional and overwhelmed.

“It has just gone crazy on Facebook, the support we have had on social media has been really great to see.”

The community raises a glass after the extraordinary clean-up effort

The Spinners Arms was a key part of its community during lockdown, with volunteers turning up to help put together and deliver free school meals for children.

And Lynda says the latest act of public generosity towards her and the pub has made her realise even more what a valued part of life in the area The Spinners Arms is.

She said: “The school lunches service was really amazing. A lot of people came forward offering to package them up, deliver them and donate food.

“I also did a delivery service of Sunday dinners during lockdown and everybody supported us with that.

“People have said how much we are respected and that we are good people. You don’t hear that on a normal day.

“This has made us realise what people really think about us.

“We would just like to thank everybody from the bottom of our hearts.”

As well as turning up on Tuesday morning for the clean-up the community also set up a Go Fund Me page last week to support the pub.

Lynda says the cash raised through that will be used to create another outdoor area for customers.

She also arranged a barbecue on Friday afternoon to thank everybody who had been involved with getting the pub up and running again following the arson attack.

The fire brigade and Greater Manchester Police (GMP) both attended the scene on Tuesday morning and Lynda said it was confirmed that the blaze had been started on purpose.

Anyone with information about the arson attack can ring police on 101, quoting reference number CRI/06LL/0014541/21, or call the charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

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