REGULARS at one of Leigh’s most well-known pubs have been left high and dry following its sudden closure.

The Ship in New Road, called time on its customers with a curt Facebook post.

The post yesterday morning said: “Due to unforeseen circumstances the Ship is currently shut. Thank you for everything and we wish you all good luck in the future.”

The closure was so sudden, two half-drunk pints were left on a table outside in the front beer garden and two discarded fridges containing rotting food lay on their sides.

Posters featuring upcoming events were still on display but there were no signs informing people about the closure.

Charlie Harris, 45, from Leigh, said: “I had no idea it had closed but it doesn’t really surprise me. Over the years, it’s always closed for one reason or another. There’s a lot of competition for good boozers round here so you have to keep on top of your game. I hope it’s not because of anything too serious.”

A neighbour, who asked not to be named, said: “I hadn’t noticed it has closed. I wouldn’t describe it as busy but business does pick up in the summer months when they have some great live acts on. I wonder if it’s because someone’s complained about the noise because drinkers do get a bit loud when they’re sat outside.”

Some speculated about the future of the landmark building. Leigh fisherman Paul Gilson said: “I’m shocked to hear that. I really hope that old building isn’t turned into flats. That would be awful.”

Leigh ward councillor Carole Mulroney said: “I had no idea. The message on Facebook appears to suggest it might be temporary but then it wishes people luck so you just don’t know.

“It’s a historic pub. I know originally it was a mansion house. It goes back several hundred years but it’s not listed. It’s been a pub since 1828. It’s in a very prominent position and you see it on lots of old postcards. It’s very well known.”

The pub is well known for hosting bands and had a DJ night geared up for Saturday, with tickets selling for £7 on the night. The pub said it wouldn’t respond to a request for a comment.