Derbyshire pub welcomes back customers with Christmas decorations, turkey and crackers - after lockdown saw December reservations cancelled
A Derbyshire pub has welcomed back customers with festive decorations, turkey and crackers - after lockdown saw December reservations cancelled.
The Hanging Gate pub, in Chapel-en-le-Frith was forced to close its doors last Noel due to lockdown.
Owner Mark Thomas, 47, promised disappointed customers the decorations would still be up when they reopened.
And full five months after Christmas, the pub finally re-opened its doors on Monday.
Excited Christmas-lovers flocked to enjoy festive decorations, turkey, music and crackers.
These pictures show families and friends seemingly unbothered by the fact it's May as they enjoyed the Christmas festivities inside the pub that was adorned with more than 30,000 twinkling lights.
Dad-of-three Mark, who has owned the pub for around 30 years, said the pub was flooded with booking requests over its first few weeks back in business and it was "fantastic" to see the doors open again.
He is planning to keep the decorations up until at least JULY to give everyone their Christmas fix after a successful first few days back and with the weekend set to get even busier.
Mark said: "People were devastated when we had to shut just before Christmas - but we promised they wouldn't miss out the festivities.
"I didn't envisage us celebrating Christmas in May - but after the year we've had, people should just enjoy doing what makes them happy.
"People weren't bothered by the time of year at all - they got in the festive spirit pulling crackers, eating turkey and enjoying our decorations.
"It was great to welcome people back and feel the buzz of a full pub again.
"I got great feedback from people saying it was great to be able to celebrate Christmas with their family properly after so many missed out in December.
"We don't have a cut-off point for taking down the decorations - at the moment we think the start of July, but we'll keep them up as long as people want them!
"Christmas in May is not everyone's cup of tea, so it was a bit of a gamble - but it definitely paid off."