Comic Dave Spikey’s puppy love for town’s new guide dog

Comedian Dave Spikey has made a new four-legged friend – Chorley’s latest guide dog puppy.

The dog has been named Astley after the town’s popular park and historic hall. Dave, best known for Phoenix Nights, 8 out of 10 Cats and Bullseye, took time out from his busy tour schedule to announce the name at an event in the town centre.

FIRM FRIENDS: Dave Spikey meets Astley, the new guide dog puppy in Chorley

FIRM FRIENDS: Dave Spikey meets Astley, the new guide dog puppy in Chorley

Grace Jackson, from Guide Dogs Chorley branch, who organised the puppy naming ceremony, said: “It was really well attended. It was excellent. Everybody enjoyed it, it was a great time. There was a round of applause when Astely was announced. Dave had a chat with everybody and talked about his own love of animals.”

Chorley resident Dave did a blindfold walk with guide dog Lottie at the event. Grace said she had been overwhelmed by the way groups, businesses, individuals and residents had got behind their fundraising puppy campaign.

She said: “We only started raising money for a puppy for the Chorley community seven or eight months and already we’ve managed to raise the £5,000 we need. This will be the first named by the Chorley community who has helped raise the funds.”

Dave said: “Grace from Chorley Guide Dog Association is a good friend of mine. I was involved in doing a blindfold challenge with them a couple of years ago.

This great charity is not funded by the Government - which seems ridiculous - so it seemed a natural thing for to be involved in.

Dave Spikey

“It’s just one of those things. I’m very much involved in animal welfare. I’m patron of several charities home and abroad. This great charity is not funded by the Government - which seems ridiculous - so it seemed a natural thing for to be involved in.”

Local singer Helen May, performed with guitarist John Watkins, to kick-start the event.