An Oldham pub that went viral after announcing its 100oz steak eating challenge says the challenge has been a huge success and has defended it from criticism.

Paul Mahon, landlord of The Black Ladd, said interest in the pub has grown since the announcement and they have interacted with new customers interested in the challenge.

He said: "It's been a massive success for us and the customers."

Included in the challenge is the gigantic steak, onion rings, mushrooms, tomatoes and a plate of chips. Anyone who can eat everything within an hour gets the meal for free, but those who fail have to fork out £59.95.

The challenge, which can be done from Monday to Thursday each week, will run until the end of November and Mr Mahon said it would only be done in short periods going forward.

Mr Mahon acknowledged some of the criticism on social media, which has been focused on it being unhealthy and a waste of food.

Responding to the criticism, he said: "You're always going to get that no matter what you do.

"We're only doing it in short stints as we don't want to promote unhealthy eating."

Mr Mahon said the customers take the food home with them when they are done to finish or if they have dogs, it makes for some great meals for them.

The idea came from the pub's management and directors as a way to have some fun and grow the pub's business, with Mr Mahon pointing out how the hospitality sector has suffered heavily through the pandemic.

Mr Mahon said those at the pub "do understand" the environmental question over the challenge and explained how the pub offers a full vegan menu, with the challenge simply being for the "meat heads".

As of now, no one has completed the challenge, but the pub are getting t-shirts printed to give to anyone who does defeat mammoth steak.

Since the challenge was announced, Mr Mahon said the pub's Facebook following has increased by thousands and they have been in contact with many new customers.

Those who take part in the challenge need to notify the pub at least 24 hours before hand so they can reserve the steak.