Death of popular and well known former Burnley landlady

Former Woodtop Inn landlady, Margaret Marsden, who has died at the age of 89, with her husband Norman celebrating their first Christmas in the pub in 1969.
Former Woodtop Inn landlady, Margaret Marsden, who has died at the age of 89, with her husband Norman celebrating their first Christmas in the pub in 1969.

A former Burnley pub landlady, who raised thousands of pounds for charity, has died at the age of 89.

Mrs Margaret Marsden spent 23 years behind the bar at the Wood Top Inn, where she became a popular and well loved figure, until she retired from the licensed trade in 1992.

Former Woodtop Inn Iandlady Margaret Marsden, who has died at the age of 89, with a silver plate she received after serving for 20 years behind the bar.

Former Woodtop Inn Iandlady Margaret Marsden, who has died at the age of 89, with a silver plate she received after serving for 20 years behind the bar.

Originally from Rossendale, Margaret took over at the helm of the pub in Accrington Road with her husband Norman in 1969.

They had previously run pubs in Blackburn and Leyland but their arrival in Burnley was like coming home for the couple who settled in immediately.

They became popular and well known mine hosts but in 1974 Norman was tragically killed in a road accident when he was only 46.

Devastated by the loss of her soulmate, Margaret made the decision to stay on at the pub and run it alone.

Margaret's daughter, Sandra Baldwin said: "Mum said her regulars were like her extended family and she wanted to stay at the Wood Top.

"And it was the regulars who pulled her through and looked out for her.

"She was so well liked because she was such a lovely, kind and friendly person. We have received so many lovely messages from people who knew mum."

Kind hearted Margaret became known for holding birthday parties for customers and regular charity events. Over the years she raised thousands of pounds for many different causes, organising sponsored walks and fancy dress parties.

She also organised regular pool and darts marathons.

Margaret also loved flowers and every room in the pub always had a vase of fresh blooms on display.

After she retired Margaret worked as a volunteer for several charity shops including Help the Aged, YMCA and she also volunteered at Burnley General Hospital.

And she spent the last 25 years living in the Cog Lane area, not far from the pub she had called home for so long.

Margaret also leaves a son Bryan, three grandchildren and a great granddaughter.

A funeral service will be held tomorrow (Wednesday, August 16th) at Burnley Crematorium at 3pm and afterwards at Rosegrove Unity Club and the family have said that anyone who knew Margaret is welcome to go along.