Painting the town blue and amber as Leeds pub answers call from Rhinos

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STAFF and regulars at Scholes pub The Buffers were more than happy to answer Leeds Rhinos’ call to paint the town blue and amber ahead of the club’s Challenge Cup final at Wembley next weekend.

The Rhinos are urging people to deck out their homes and businesses in the club’s famous colours during the countdown to the big game against Hull KR on Saturday, August 29.

The Buffers  landlady Dawn Burke  (right) with barmaid Chloe Ingham

The Buffers landlady Dawn Burke (right) with barmaid Chloe Ingham

Dawn and Mick Burke, who own The Buffers on Rakehill Road, have responded by tripling the number of Leeds Rhinos posters, shirts and memorabilia at the pub.

The Burkes and Dawn’s brother Darren Bennett, who manages the pub, are all avid Leeds Rhinos fans and season ticket holders.

The Buffers is a magnet for Rhinos fans and a coach will be taking 60 regulars to the final, while those without a ticket will be able to watch the game live in the bar.

And a free barbecue and live music has been organised at The Buffers from 5pm on the day the day after the big game. The Burkes hope it will be a celebratory event following a Rhinos win.

Mrs Burke said: “We have got loads of Rhinos shirts plastered all over the ceiling and we have got pictures, scarves , flags and signed rugby balls.

“We have got two massive banners outside the pub and one on the inside saying ‘The Buffers is backing Leeds Rhinos for Wembley 2015.’”

“They have got the best chance ever this year against Hull, but anything can happen on the day.

“We are hoping they are going to win the cup and go on to win the treble. We want them to do it for Kevin Sinfield and Jamie Peacock in their last season.”

Main club sponsor Leeds Building Society has helped fans get in the mood for Wembley by producing 10,000 posters that can be picked up from any of its branches around the city or from Headingley Carnegie Stadium. Fans tweeting photos of their specially-decorated homes and businesses with the hashtag #BackingRhinos could win prizes that will be presented by Headingley favourite Jamie Jones-Buchanan.

Rob Oates, Leeds Rhinos commercial director, said: “We are overwhelmed by the support shown for the club ahead of the final. We love it when we see the whole city getting behind the club and we want everyone to feel part of this massive occasion. Our supporters are a big part of what our club is about and it has been great to see visually all across Leeds the efforts people have gone to in getting behind the team. On behalf of the players and everyone at the club we would like to thank them for backing the Rhinos.”