PUB bosses at the Grey Mare in Ramsbottom were stunned to discover an old relic — a 30-year-old bar tab.
Licensees Jayne and Graham Mardy discovered the tab, believed to be the longest-running tab in the UK, under the stairs after taking over the pub.
Originally a roof slate, the tab includes the names of 11 regulars and their individual debts, ranging from one pint and a packet of nuts to 30 lagers and 10 halves.
On reopening the pub, the husband and wife team were amazed to discover that six of the 11 regulars on the tab still visit the pub, including Billy Maver, who owed nine bottles, Dominic Healey, seven pints, Jimmy McManus, one pint and a packet of nuts, Billy Grogan, seven and a half pints and Mick Williams, 15 pints.
There is also a Brian Daly who owed a combined tab of 30 lagers and 10 halves with Norman Jackson.
Jayne said: “It’s a complete mystery how the tab ended up under the stairs of the pub but it’s great that the majority of regulars who feature on it are still coming in the pub today.
“It is understood that the tab was in use for many years under former landlord Joe Heaton, but nobody is sure when it was lost or if the outstanding balances were ever paid.
“However, we’ve promised to write-off the debts.
“We’ve had the tab restored and framed and it now takes pride of place in the bar. It’s a part of the pub’s heritage and reflects the strong sense of community we all value here.”
Joe Hickey, Norman Jackson and Mick Conner, who also featured on the tab, are now dead, and Frank Foreman moved away from the area.