Last orders at Lismore's Winsome Hotel
LISMORE'S iconic Winsome Hotel is closed and no one can say when, or if, it will reopen.
The doors were shut and the locks changed after a dramatic confrontation on Tuesday between hotel licensee Maralyn Schofield and owner Dallas Bailey.
Ms Schofield said her landlord arrived with several police officers and an eviction notice that gave her an hour to pack her things and go.
“We were in dispute over the lease, but we were working it out through solicitors while the business continued to run,” Ms Schofield said.
“He brought the police with him, even though it was a contractual matter, not a police matter, and changed the locks, giving me no choice but to remove everything that belonged to me.”
With tensions still running high yesterday, Ms Schofield was back at the Winsome, but only for as long as it took to finish packing and cleaning.
When she left at 5.30pm it was with the expectation she would never set foot in the place again.
The tensions continued to simmer into the evening with reports last night of a graffiti attack on the building.
Mr Bailey said he wrote to Ms Schofield's solicitor a month ago, offering to halve rent owing on the hotel if it was paid immediately. He denied giving her an hour to leave the building, saying it was 24 hours.
Mr Bailey said the hotel was not operable in its current 'filthy' state.