They don’t make them like Mrs Browne anymore

Over the last number of years, I have written a lot about old traditional country pubs and how important I believe these pubs are to their communities.

Browne’s Pub in Newcastle is one of these country pubs where neighbours meet, local news is exchanged and the local GAA sells their lotto tickets. Eileen Browne ran Browne’s Pub after her husband passed away.

She had a smile for everyone, a sharp eye for opportunities and a quick hand at cards. For many years, she was the heart and soul of Browne’s until a stroke forced her to retire and hand the reins over to her son Sean. She passed away peacefully last Friday – Mrs Browne leaves behind a legacy that people will remember for many years to come.

When talking to people who knew her, phrases like ‘a real lady’, ‘a legend’, ‘they don’t make them like her anymore’ and ‘such a lovely lady’ came out over and over again.

Mrs Browne was a legend who was a landlady like you want them to be. She had no patience for nonsense and no one ever attempted any foolish behaviour when she was in the building. A loving mother, grandmother and friend, she was loved by everyone.

I mentioned one time that I love Captain Morgan rum – the next time I came in, she looked at me and pointed at the bottle behind the bar. I had to drink quite a few ever since. She loved tennis and I had to read up on current matches and players to keep up with her and she loved to talk about her grandchildren.

When she entered the pub, everyone stopped to say hello and have a chat with her. It could take her almost an hour to get from one side of the room to the other as everyone had a chat with her and she stopped every time, never leaving anyone feeling less important than the other.

They really don’t make them like her anymore – let’s hope that we still have people like her in the world; we need them.

We need the Mrs Brownes of this world to keep us grounded, teach us respect and hard work. I think she and my grandmother would have gotten on like a house on fire – both were witty, loved cards and had been through a lot without losing their sense of humour. I can imagine how they would have spent a night playing cards at the table that is reserved for regulars and exchanging stories of times gone by.

Let’s raise a toast to the Mrs Brownes of this world.