A Wigan couple who have been running a club which is very much the heart of its community for 30 years are celebrating their success.
David and Marie Coleman, from Norley Hall, have negotiated the ups and downs of the industry during three decades in charge at St Thomas’ Sports and Social Club at Marsh Green.
The Comet Street venue is one of the last few clubs left in Wigan and is still local people’s choice for everything from wedding receptions to funeral wakes to milestone birthday parties.
David says that in recent years it is a bit of bully which has also helped keep the place afloat, with Lancashire darts teams playing high-profile county matches there.
David paid tribute to the close-knit community in Marsh Green which has kept St Thomas’ thriving.
The 66-year-old said: “It seems like yesterday we took over, it has gone so quick. You get to know the members and make such good friends, and you then don’t want the club to die.
We’re on a big estate and if St Thomas’ closed there would be nothing left there.
“We’ve worked really hard to keep it going. They are such nice people here. A lot of clubs have closed and when the last one in Newtown shut its members came here.
“Our biggest thing is the darts. We’ve had world number ones here and people can meet the players and get pictures and autographs. It’s fantastic.”
The couple have also been helped a lot in recent years by granddaughter Samantha Hardman.