It seems donkeys for church services were at a premium on Palm Sunday.
Some had to go without as churches throughout the area re-enacted Jesus’ procession into Jerusalem on the back of a donkey when palm waving crowds lined the streets to greet their Saviour.
As late as 7.30am on Sunday, St Thomas’ Church at Garstang put out an urgent appeal on local radio for a donkey.
At St Michael’s-on-Wyre, the church was informed their intended four-legged visitor had developed a bad toe and could not perform for them.
Meanwhile, all at St Mary’s Church, Goosnargh, felt their proposed donkey was not able to be trusted to behave in church, so they had to go without.
Again, at Calder Vale, with no donkey in sight, a pony filled its place, when everyone was asked to congregate in the village’s Mill Square, ready to process up to St John’s Church.
Jesus’ donkey was represented by Ben, a lively pony led by Hannah and her dad Richard from the Lancashire Racing Stables.
Residents and visitors enjoyed the breezy walk and caught glimpses of the first bluebells.
Everyone sang and prayed and had moments of reflection in preparation for Easter.
The puffing and panting up the hill was amply rewarded by a magnificent spread of cakes and tea in church.
“We were truly blessed,” said a spokesman.
Despite no donkey, the congregation of St Mary’s still had their palm crosses blessed in the grounds of Bushell House before processing into church.