As many hospitality businesses struggle with staff shortages at the moment, a Coupar Angus Hotel is celebrating a key milestone in the service history of a most valued employee.

Sarah Cooper, from Coupar Angus, has now been with the Red House Hotel for 25 years and is now Assistant Manager.

Having joined the hospitality industry aged just 13, Sarah initially worked part time at the Royal Hotel which was in Coupar Angus at the time. After school and college she joined The Red House Hotel.

“You are definitely made to feel part of the family here,” she said. “I’m absolutely thrilled to reach the milestone of 25 years service, especially on the back of the past 18 months which have been such a difficult time for the industry. I’m even more proud of our team here at The Red House. We powered through looking after guests and adapting quickly to the changing circumstances. When we re-opened after the last lockdown it was so nice to welcome our regular customers again.”

As Sarah reflected, the colleagues that she has worked with at the Hotel quickly become your second family due to the long hours often worked.

“Many of us have enjoyed long service spells here at The Red House, it’s just that type of place. Alan Bannerman, the owner, and his family are fantastic – we are all like one extended family really. I’ve stayed here as I really enjoy every aspect of the job.”

“We see a lot of regular faces, whether it’s in the bar, Sunday regulars, or golfers who stay from time to time. They all help us enjoy what we do,” she added.

As Sarah explained, 2020 saw a special anniversary for the Hotel too, but covid19 meant it could not be celebrated properly.

“Alan and his family marked 40 years of owning the hotel in 2020,” she said. “It was not the ideal time to have such an event, but we did what we could.”

“I’m very grateful for the many cards and gifts I have received in the last few days from colleagues and regulars here at the Hotel,” said Sarah. “I’m extremely touched and it’s so nice to be appreciated.”

A highlight of her years at The Red House was winning the Scottish Golf Tourism Award for Best Small Hotel in 2016.

“We had a fantastic night at the Fairmont Hotel in St Andrews which definitely made all our hard work and attention to detail worth it,” said Sarah.

Sarah is one of several long serving staff whom between them rack up more than 68 years service.  Chef, George Arnott has been with the business 28 years, whilst Front of House, Carol Anne Key is on 28 years.

Commenting on Sarah’s milestone, Alan Bannerman said: “Our congratulations to Sarah on behalf of myself and the family. She is an absolute stalwart here and very well liked in the community. She has led from the front during the pandemic, and really has gone the extra mile over the past year dealing with everything that has been thrown at her. We seem to be very lucky here finding – and keeping – staff who represent the very best of Scottish hospitality – passionate, hard working people who are vital to their community.”

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