Council’s new pub protection program to make Vic on the Park heritage listing a priority

Wednesday 28 November 2018

Council will move to roll out its new heritage pub protection program after a report showed that many of the Inner West’s most historic hotels are not heritage listed.

The move comes as a number of iconic Inner West pubs have been targeted for conversion into other business uses, including turning the historic Town Hall Hotel in Balmain into a gym and massage parlour.

Inner West Mayor Darcy Byrne said conversions like the Town Hall’s are setting a dangerous precedent, which, if they continue, could see the Inner West lose its very heart and soul.

“Our hotels and pubs are cultural institutions and have a value above and beyond the commercial – they have architectural, historical and social significance.

“We’ve got to draw a line in the sand and send a clear message that if you buy a heritage hotel in the Inner West you need to operate it as a pub and not convert it into new usage,” he said.

“Council officers have investigated the heritage status of every pub in the Inner West. And the good news is many historic pubs are already heritage listed.

“At present, the Vic on the Park has no protection against being redeveloped, as it is not heritage listed and is not in a heritage conservation zone. That's why we will make the heritage listing of the Vic on the Park the top priority for our new pub protection program.

“We must do everything in our power to protect such an iconic live music venue and popular Inner West watering hole.

“There are many other pubs like the former Town Hall Hotel in Balmain that are in heritage conservation areas, but are not heritage listed. We know from the saga at the Towny that this doesn't provide anywhere near enough protection.

“Among the other pubs that aren’t currently listed but, in my opinion, should be are the Annandale Hotel, the 3 Weeds, the Welcome Hotel, the Unity Hall Hotel.”

There are currently 66 pubs in the Inner West Local Government Area.

  • 11 (17%) have no heritage protection
  • 24 (36%) have protections by their location in a heritage conservation area
  • 31 (47%) are individually heritage listed.

Council also resolved to hold a public forum in the new year on the future of the Inner West’s night-time economy. It will be held in conjunction with hotel proprietors, licensees, music venue operators, local businesses, hospitality sector representatives and planning experts.

For further information, please contact Kate Walsh on 9392 5685 or

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Page last updated: 28 Nov 2018