The Golden Anchor was an inn visited frequently by Preston’s 17th-century diarists Thomas Bellingham and Lawrence Rawstorne. They refer to it simply as the Anchor, using various spellings such as Anker, a spelling which brings out the fact that the name refers not to a ship’s anchor but to the old imperial measure of 8.5 gallons and to a barrel of that size. So a yellow barrel outside an inn could stand for the Golden Anchor.
It must have been one of the most important inns in 17th-century Preston given that Bellingham and Rawstorne supped there on 1 August 1688 in the company of the Duke of Somerset and the mayor and corporation of the town.
A 1685 plan of the town records Richard Woods as the innkeeper. Link to plan showing location
Steve Halliwell provides a wealth of information on the Golden Anchor on his Preston Pubs website: