A former beauty therapist has taken over a Colne Valley pub she’s known most of her life.

Sadie Cooper was born and brought up in Marsden and is the new landlady at the village’s Railway Inn next to the train station after previous landlady Kate Ward stepped down due to ill health.

Sadie, 33, had never even pulled a pint until a couple of years ago when she started to work at the Riverhead Brewery Tap in Marsden but had stepped in to help 58-year-old Kate when she suffered serious eye problems.

Kate, a former comedian who has been a singer with blues soul band Velvet Hammer for 20 years, had been staging live blues music at the pub every Sunday but her health problems started in May when she suffered a detached retina in her right eye.

As soon as that was fixed she then had a detached retina in her left eye which detached three times and scar tissue caused by operations on both eyes caused her even further sight problems.

She bravely battled on and Sadie started to help her after going to the pub just for a drink one evening when a group of Ale Trailers suddenly arrived and she noticed Kate was on her own trying to serve everyone.

Sadie offered to help during the rush, the two got on and Kate offered her some hours at the pub and then Sadie stepped in to run it when Kate’s eyesight deteriorated and she eventually decided to leave the pub to concentrate on her health.

Former landlady Kate Ward

Sadie has lived in Marsden all her life, going to Marsden infants and junior schools and then Colne Valley High. She has two sons, 10-year-old Arlie and 12-year-old Isaac.

Sadie – who has a degree in Media Make-up from the Northern School of Creative Arts in Bradford – was a beauty therapist for several years at the Hidden Beauty Rooms in Marsden where she worked with her best friend from childhood, hairdresser Faye Bengston.

Faye’s family ran the Railway for many years so Sadie has known the pub well since her childhood.

Sadie said it was a big decision to take on the Railway but the camaraderie in the village is great with Riverhead manager Jayne Haley encouraging her to do it.

Sadie said: “I’ve worked for Jayne and we’ve become friends and any time I have any doubts or questions she’s there for me. Sometimes I think it’s a crazy decision but Jayne thinks I can make it work.”

The Sunday Blues Train music will be staying with blues bands at the pub every Sunday. Bands are now booked well into next year.

The first thing Sadie did when she took over was to buy a coffee machine with the coffee provided by Honley company Coffee Brothers who have given the Railway staff barista training.

Sadie said: “Many people really love to have a coffee, especially in winter if they’ve been for a walk along the canal or their train has been delayed. We are right next to the station.”

Sadie is also a great baker so will be doing coffee and cake promotions.

Another aim is to start serving traditional pub grub and Sadie organises Huddersfield pop up mobile wood-fired pizza company Crust Culture when the Railway is hosting big events and is likely to be busy. It was so hectic at the Railway during the recent Marsden Jazz Festival they sold out of pizzas.

The pub has a large courtyard-style beer garden at the back which Sadie describes as “a hidden gem that no-one knows about but they do now.”

The Railway Inn is open from 12noon to 10pm Sunday to Thursday and 12noon to late on Friday and Saturdays.

Sadie will be having an official takeover party at the pub on Saturday, November 18.

Written by ANDY HIRST who runs his own Yorkshire freelance journalism agency AH! PR (https://ah-pr.com/) specialising in press releases, blogging, website content and copywriting