When Ye Olde Narrogin Inne was bulldozed there were, of course, complaints from a few heritage-minded people. Although everyone agreed the original pub was somewhat decrepit, its romantic links back to coaching days had long made it a favourite of travellers.
To commemorate Western Australia’s centenary, a tablet was unveiled at the Inne, noting that it first opened in 1857 and the first licensee was Thomas Saw.
Yet in 1937, just eight years after this heritage recognition, the licensing authority condemned the hotel as being unfit for conducting business. Improving the old building wasn’t viable, so it had to be demolished. There’s not a lot of romantic souls working at liquor licensing.
The New Olde Narrogin Inne was very different to the unpretentious single-storey edifice it replaced. Although it is hard to imagine it today, the pub was in the latest fashionable style, Mock Tudor.
In fact the owners kept stressing how modern the Inne now was. No more grime and dust, just contemporary furniture resting on contemporary carpets. For some reason they were obsessed with how cool (and expensive) their carpets were. They also encouraged drinkers to finger the new furnishings. Which is just wrong in all the ways.
Anyway, this most modern of hotels is now heritage listed. And no one mourns the loss of the original Inne. No one
Now what makes me think of Guildford?