Meet The Landlady: Pia Ewens of The Cross Keys, Paulsgrove


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Landlady Pia Ewens is a veteran in the pub trade.

Over the past 22 years she has worked in scores of pubs in London and Reading.

Mrs Ewens moved to Portsmouth after she and husband Stephen, 56, decided they wanted to be closer to members of Stephen’s family, who lived in Gosport and Leigh Park.

Mrs Ewens, who was brought up in Denmark, said: ‘I’ve always loved life in the pub trade.

‘When I came to Portsmouth we had already stopped working in pubs and I had got a job as a carer.

‘But then Stephen was given the chance to snap up The Cross Keys, which was closed at the time.

‘He took it over and after he drummed up some business I came on board too.

‘I think we make a great team. I can see us staying here for a long time yet. We’ve got to know the locals.

‘A lot of the older ones look out for the younger ones and make sure they don’t get up to any mischief.

‘We’re happy with how things are going here.’

The couple’s son George, who turned 20 on Tuesday, has worked behind the bar at The Cross Keys since he was 18.

‘I enjoy working here,’ George said. ‘It’s the people that make it - they’re a good laugh. It seemed like a natural step to follow in the footsteps of my family.

‘I had a few ideas with what I wanted to do in life but I settled with this. After I got my Level Two NVQ in hospitality I had the right qualifications to work in a pub.’