Kath Cassidy

By Dan Sheridan - Newcastle United Managing Editor

 

She's been described as a Newcastle institution, and has served a host of Toon managers on matchday for the past 44 years, but on Sunday tea lady Kath Cassidy finally got round to watching her first-ever United game live.

The grandmother of 13, from Battle Hill, Wallsend, was given VIP treatment for the visit of Norwich City as Kath and her family cheered the lads on to three points from one of the Club's executive boxes.

Having worked under no fewer than 27 managers over the years, the 85-year-old has always been too busy serving a thirsty press pack in the Club's media suite to watch her beloved Magpies in action.

But all that changed this Mother's Day, and as she explained, it's an experience she won't forget in a hurry.

"It was a brilliant day," said Kath, "and it was nice to have it topped off with a win.

"It meant a lot to me to finally get to watch a home game because I normally have to wait until I get home and watch it on the television.

"A lot of things have changed since I started working here in 1968, and a lot more women and families come to the games now.

"But some of the press men have never changed and I've watched a lot of them grow up and have families. They're all great to work with and I wouldn't swap my job for anything."

And on the host of managers that she has poured cuppas for at the Club, Kath added: "I've been very lucky, because we've had some great characters at Newcastle United over the years.

"Joe Harvey was my first manager, but Kevin (Keegan) was a big favourite of mine, and Graeme Souness came to my house to visit for a couple of hours when I was unwell.

"Alan Shearer was also very kind and it's lovely working with Alan Pardew as well.

"Then there was Sir Bobby (Robson). He was a real gentleman and very well mannered - and he had one sugar in his coffee!"