Landlord faces missing World Cup Final for step-daughter's wedding
Paul Cookson will miss what will be a hugely busy day if England make it to the final to walk Rachael Jones down the aisle.
Rachael, who works as a personal trainer with pro-fit personal training in Wigan, chose July 15 as it her late father’s birthday.
And the big day - the wedding, of course - has been booked for two years when no-one was thinking of England and World Cup glory.
But cometh the hour, cometh the man - and the 57-year-old just knew the idea of not going to his step-daughter’s wedding and working during final was simply a non-starter.
“I’ll be there for 1.30pm, it starts about 2pm and I’ll be walking her down the aisle at 2.30pm, so I’ll be sitting down eating when the game’s on,” said Leyland man
Paul, who has been landlord at the Queen’s for the last six years.
“I’ve got contingency plans for the pub.”
Step-daughter Rachael, 35, will marry Gavin Clark, 27, from Blackburn, in Manchester.
The couple met through their work and live in Buckshaw Village. The wedding ceremony and reception are taking place at the Bays, Victoria Warehouse, Stretford.
The family have seen the funny side of it all, especially with Gavin’s parents being Scottish!
Paul, who runs the Queen’s in Leyland, said he remembered England winning the World Cup for the one and only time in 1966.
“After 52 years, it’s just dropped on the same date,” he sighed. But it’s a good bit of fun.”
He said: “In all seriousness I was always going to the wedding - bloody hell, I’d get killed otherwise.
“We never expected England to get this far, but they’re a young squad and done very well.
“After 52 years, I’ve waited 52 years, I’m gutted it could happened this year.
“But it’s just one of those things, you just go with the flow.
“It was walking my daughter down the aisle, stopping in the pub with the lads and enjoying the game, or do I get divorced - the wife voted for divorce.”
The match action won’t be far away from him, though.
“I’ll have my phone in my pocket and the earphones on,” said Paul, who is married to Susan.
“I haven’t even written my dad’s speech yet, I’ll do it after Wednesday.
“The pub will be rammed. It will be like New Year’s Eve.
“This past week, I’ve had five New Year’s Eves.”
Paul assured thirsty customers at the Queen’s not to worry about getting served, as there would be enough hands behind the bar to look after them.
“I’ve got an ex-landlord, a couple, to take over,” he said.