PUB CLOSURE: 15 workers lose their jobs
ONE of Lismore's most popular pubs and a haven for live music has suddenly closed.
The closure of the New Tattersalls Hotel on Keen St on Monday has left a gaping hole in the heart of Lismore's music scene.
About 15 staff are out of work, while 12 residents living upstairs must move out by March 5.
The Tatts' owners Rod and Kim Bradbury, who have held the lease for the last three years, took to Facebook to announce the news.
"What a bastard of a day....it is with broken hearts that we have had to close our doors today,” they wrote.
"Our hearts go out to our staff for they are truly amazing.
"To our patrons, whom are like family, we are sorry.”
Mr Bradbury told The Northern Star the business had been hit hard by the Cyclone Debbie flood.
They had been pinning their hopes on a major insurance claim to get them back in the black, but last week, the news was bleak.
Their insurance company, AssetInsure, rejected the claim for the second time.
Like many other businesses, the Tatts was only insured for storm damage, not floods, despite paying $37,000 a year in premiums.
The Bradburys hired their own hydrologist, who concluded the damage was in fact storm related, but AssetInsure rejected that finding.
Mr Bradbury said contesting the latest decision was not impossible, but would require more legal firepower and potentially more cost.
One long-term resident of the hotel said he felt sad for the Bradburys.
"They put so much energy into the place... They were the best publicans this place has ever had,” he said.
Local musicians have also been left devastated by the closure.
The Tatts was one of the only venues left in Lismore showcasing live music most nights of the week.
Local band runner and jazz musician Pietro Fine, said the pub was "so supportive of the arts and local music.”
"It's been a music centre for Lismore long before Kim and Rod were the owners, and when they bought it they built it up even more,” he said.
Mr Fine said local venues which put on live music night after night were crucial to the health of the local music scene.
He said it was particularly sad because Lismore had lost similar venues in the past, such as the Ryan Hotel in the early '90s.
Josephine Saunders, President of the Rotary Club of Summerland Sunrise in Lismore, said the Bradburys had opened the pub at 7am on Fridays especially for their weekly meeting.
"It reverberates right through the community, everyone feels for them,” she said.
"Personally I think it's very distressing, it's a great blow to the local music scene, every time we went in there there was gigs on.
"It was a nice cheerful place.”