Kay is now mine host

By Mark Elson in Local People

THE long-serving owner of a Forest café, whose axing prompted a wave of public support, has a new home for her business.

Around 1,000 people signed a petition in support of Kay Bird when she was told she would have to leave the Dean Heritage Centre at Soudley after 35 years.

Now she has refurbished the café at Hopewell Colliery near Coleford and started selling her renowned home-made cakes and other goodies over Easter.

She was invited to run the cafe at Hopewell by freeminer Rich Daniels who also leads underground visits for visitors.

She said: “I’m really happy to have been invited to run the cafe at Hopewell.

“We’ve cracked on over the last few months to completely refurbish it and I’ve had a lot of support from my husband, Alan, and my family.

“At one point I counted 16 members of the family setting about it to make sure I opened in time for Easter.”

Mr Daniels said: “It’s a great solution for us because we don’t run cafés but Kay has completely transformed it.

“Before it was brown and dark but now it is open, light and airy.

“It also means we have somewhere to come when we’ve been underground, so hopefully we’ll be allocated a little quarter.”

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