A FAMILY of four who were told to leave a Cogan pub they have called home for more than three years say they are heartbroken to be leaving, and thanked their regulars who have “made our time here a joy”.

Natasha Rees and husband Gareth, who have run The Station on Windsor Road since April 2017, were informed of their impending departure last Monday by Brains, which owns the pub.

“It was just total shock,” Mrs Rees said, “we received a call in March saying the pub would be sold, but would likely be sold as a pub and we would be able to stay. But last week we were told we needed to leave.”

The pub is one of 40 across the UK which Brains is to let go.

“It’s all systems go now to try and find a new house,” said Mrs Rees, who has two sons – Harley, aged 11, and Corey, aged six.

“We will miss the pub so much, we feel we’ve built up a strong reputation here compared to when we took it on, and we felt it was just starting to get really good,” she said.

Mrs Rees said even with the challenges the pub would have inevitably faced post-lockdown, they never considered leaving.

“We put our lives into it and it took us three years to get us here, so for it to be all gone is heart-breaking really. It was our project.

“For it to end during lockdown, when people can’t come and say goodbye, is probably the worst part.”


Mr and Mrs Rees say they prided themselves on making The Station a “proper boozer”, and hope that people feel they managed to do that well.

Asked whether they will stay in the industry, Mrs Rees said she is taking it "step by step".

“The first job is to find some accommodation. I’m a Penarth girl born and bred, so I’m sure I’ll still be around.”

A statement from SA Brain and Co Ltd reads: “SA Brain can confirm that it has accepted an offer for the freehold interest of the Station public house in Cogan.

“It has not been possible to negotiate a continuation to the trading agreement in place at the Station and the sale will, therefore, be proceeding on the basis of the purchaser taking vacant possession of the building upon completion.

“The Station had previously been included in a package of pubs that were placed on the market for disposal as part of the SA Brain’s three-year plan to significantly grow the profitability of its business in the face of extremely difficult economic times.

“The uncertainty around the negotiation of our withdrawal from the EU, costs, especially the National Living Wage, being set to increase well ahead of inflation coupled with the, as yet, unknown levels of trade recovery post Covid-19 lockdown have all impacted the decision taken to proceed with this sale.”

Brains announced this week that none of its pubs will be reopening on July 13, meaning the Merrie Harrier and The Windsor will remain closed for now.