The closure of a beloved town pub has prompted sadness among the community.

Dalton’s Golden Ball has now closed its door and is due to go up for auction.

Landlady Jacqui Chisman said the decision was made by Robinson’s Brewery, which owns the Tudor Square.

It would be the second pub in the square to close its doors, with plans to turn the neighbouring Black Bull - itself sold at auction - into accommodation.

Dave Taylor, the chairman of Dalton Community Action Group, said it was ‘a shame’ the pub had closed but hopes it could become a space for the community.

He said: “It has not gone yet. Maybe some kind of community ownership could be worked out.

“It’s been done in other towns where the community own and run the pub and the profits go back into the town.

“Failing that, I hope somebody [buys it] with a vision of keeping it open as a pub and not turning it into flats, like the new owners of the Black Bull are wanting to do.

“It’s such a shame if another community hub, where memories are made and gossip is shared, shuts for good.”

The pub has been involved in a number of community initiatives, including helping to raise money to go towards bringing back a children’s play park in Storey Square.

Landlady Jacqui was also involved in a campaign to bring a commemorative bench to Tudor Square to honour of town legend Barney Somers.

A bingo group at the pub had raised thousands of pound for St Mary’s Hospice.

Under the Community Right to Bid, residents can ‘stop-the clock’ on the sale of assets and amenities like post offices, village shops or community pubs, giving them time to put in a bid of their own and protect it for the wider benefits of the community.

The new right gives voluntary and community organisations and parish councils the opportunity to nominate an asset to be included on a list of ‘Assets of Community Value’.

Plans were put forward earlier this year to turn the Black Bull next door into housing.

The Tudor Square pub dates back to the 19th century when discoveries of iron ore brought hundreds of miners to Dalton.

The town then became renowned for its plentiful pubs and hotels.

An application was lodged to change its use from public house to two houses. The premises will be converted into a four-bedroomed property and a smaller cottage of two bedrooms.

A statement outlining the intention of the plans said: “The Black Bull, despite the efforts of several tenants/managers, was closed by the then owner Enterprise Inns as being deemed unviable.

“The property was on the open market for in excess of a year with no takers."

The Mail attempted to contact Robinson's Brewery but they had not responded at the time of going to press.