Beth Mead's journey from pulling pints in a Staithes pub to pulling on a Lionesses shirt

  • Report by ITV Calendar News sports correspondent Chris Dawkes

Long before Beth Mead became the first woman to score a hat-trick for England at Wembley, she was pulling pints at the local pub to buy her boots.

The 27-year-old is one of those hoping to fire England to Euros success this summer and, barring any injury, she will lead the line for the Lionesses in their opening group fixture against Austria at Old Trafford.

She has certainly come a long way since working behind the bar at the Fox and Hounds pub in Staithes near Whitby, just down the road from where she grew up in the coastal village of Hinderwell.

"Customers liked her." says publican Irene Ward. "She was easy to get along with. She was absolutely dedicated to her football, that was all she lived for. I remember when she bought her first football boots, and she was absolutely thrilled because they were £100."

Love for Mead is certainly strong in her home region, with a local artist and amateur footballers pitching in to paint a mural to show support for their heroes.

Beth, who plays for Arsenal in the Women's Super League, said: "I used to work Friday, Saturday. Sunday was double time behind the bar. I was a waitress part time just to afford the boots. I enjoyed working there and I got my boots in the end."

Boots are free for Beth now. She's one of England's star players having scored 14 goals for her country since last September, including three hat-tricks.

Beth Mead scoring one of two goals she netted at Elland Road last month Credit: PA

Beth's dad Richard is responsible for lighting the fire after taking Beth to her first training session at the local park when the Lioness was just a cub.

He said: "When she was a kid she had bags of energy. There was a guy called Phil from the village who ran a lot of football for all the lads.

"Phil said 'they're very rough' but my wife June said 'she'll be fine.' When we came to pick her up Phil said he had to warn Beth off the lads because she was kicking bits out of them. Nothing's changed."

"I used to sit and watch people interviewing parents about how well their kids have done in the Olympics and things like that. And I used to think 'they must be so proud.'

Beth Mead playing for a local youth team before signing for Sunderland as a teenager

"It's surreal for us to be in the same situation. We're so proud of what she's doing. She's doing fantastically well. She's put a lot of hard work into it to get where she is."

On the influence of her parents, Beth said: "I want to make them proud for all the hours and extra work that my mum put in working two jobs to afford petrol to get me to training."

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