Marc takes helm at historic Ribchester pub

Photo Neil Cross'Marc Bond, formerly at Haighton Manor, has taken over the White Bull in Ribchester, with head chef Daniel Edwards and Bar Manager Paul Thorpe
Photo Neil Cross'Marc Bond, formerly at Haighton Manor, has taken over the White Bull in Ribchester, with head chef Daniel Edwards and Bar Manager Paul Thorpe

The job of catering for others has taken businessman Marc Bond across the world - but now his focus is one of the oldest pubs in the Ribble Valley.

Marc, who was previously at Haighton Manor, in Haighton near Preston, has re-opened the historic White Bull in Ribchester to a big welcome from the Friends of the pub.

Following its recent chequered history, the Friends got together to campaign to save the White Bull and also fight against any development plans by owners Enterprise Inns.

Friends’ convenor Marc Mallam revealed that at their last meeting the Inns’ senior management felt the latest takeover was a ‘last chance saloon’ for the historic pub before considering applying for residential development and putting it on the market.

He said: “Such a change of use could be problematic for them, since we have managed to get it adopted as an Asset of Community Value.

“It is also a listed building, in a conservation area and to lose this historic pub in the very heart of the local community would be a disaster for the village.”

The Friends welcomed Marc Bond, his family, his team of eight including head chef Dan Edwards,bar manager Paul Thorpe, and others from his previous hostelry.

Marc Mallam added: “We hope Marc’s ambitious plans for the White Bull can be effectively realised with no one getting in the way of his success.”

As a long-term professional operator in catering and provision supply both abroad and nationally, and at one time having run a similar airline business for 12 years out of Blackpool Airport, Marc Bond sees the White Bull as an important addition to his family business, Hospitality Excellence Ltd.

He plans to increase guest bedrooms at the 18th century former coaching inn - datestone 1707 - from three to nine.

And he aims to make sure, he says, “first and foremost, that everyone who knows and loves the White Bull can relax in the knowledge that they have got their pub back, it is going well and they are not likely to be disappointed again.”