We thank you all for your supportive feedback about our announcement on the DA approved Stonequarry Bar and Grill and on the artists impression on how this will look. Given the high interest and feedback we have received, we would like to address a few insights into the building process & final result we are aiming for.
Ultimately our vision is to ensure the pub will be around for a long, long time and we want the pub to continue to cater for locals and visitors alike. Live music and entertainment will be high on the agenda, yet we also want to ensure that the George is a destination pub, which can offer new areas for people to relax, eat great food, sample some quality beers and enjoy it with their families.
Our vision is inspired by our desire to showcase the history of the pub itself, the stories it holds, how the building has evolved, the Georgian era in Picton and indeed King George IV himself as well as the latest contribution to the story, rebuilding the pub after the devastating floods.
It is important to remember that the pub remained closed for 18 months, and was very close to being closed forever or turned into another usage such as offices or apartments. The building has been lovingly restored and now it has been brought back to life. The revitalisation of the George IV Inn, after the 2016 floods, has been quietly going on in the background since the new owners took over.
Being a Heritage Listed Building, the process can be difficult and seemingly slow. We have worked closely with Council, and their consultants including heritage and urban planning specialists as well as our own design and architectural team to work through all the layers of approval needed.
The goal has always been to not only reopen the Pub for the community but to create the George IV Inn as a family friendly destination, with a variety of spaces you can go to eat and drink. Most locals are familiar with the varied history and stories of the George IV and rest assured the character of the George is not being lost – it is being given the opportunity to be told. It was great to see just how many people stepped forward and offered their support and services to help rebuild and clean up with the new owners.
The first stage of the project was an intensive restoration of the existing Sandstone Building. The new owners have spent allot of time and invstment making the pub compliant with all the relevant rules and regulations and in short doing this is a way that looks like almost no change has occurred.
The truth is that almost every corner of the pub had to be touched in some way, every single wooden panel was painstakingly removed, the batons behind replaced, walls dried out and then the panels were re-sanded, varnished and replaced. The same process was applied to every wooden floorboard within the pub and the accommodation. The entire pub was rewired, the fire system replaced, all plumbing was replaced & the beer garden and front of the pub were dug up and new surfaces applied, the list is exhaustive.
When it came to the old dining area and kitchen, we soon realised that the building was far more damaged than first thought and therefore we had to go through the intensive DA process as mentioned above. The second stage, which has just been granted DA approval, is all about making the former restaurant area more functional, offering a warm winter environment for diners and better showcasing parts of the pub that were previously hidden from view. These areas have now been reconfigured to give the public more indoor seating, brand new kitchens and new amenities.
This part of the pub is actually a mix of many different eras’ including Georgian, Edwardian and Art Deco periods as well as some late 1970’s add ons! Through the design process, extensive efforts have been made to preserve all the wonderful, quirky and unexpected features, as they together make the George the pub it is today. This part of the pub also suffered the most damage and much of it has been in the process of being rebuilt in a like-for-like manner as is required for any heritage building.
The new addition to the pub is mainly an outdoor deck and bar area that allows you to come and take in some of the best views in Picton, overlooking the creek and up to the escarpment. It was apparent that much of the pubs land has not been available for public access. From the deck you will look down to the stone barn and the original stable complex and to the landscape beyond. The magnificent trees lining the creek cast deep shade in summer and the entire design has been created to work In with the heritage building and all the layers of history.
It should be noted that the artists impression with small trees and a landscaped creek are simply there to show the building, most of the building will not be visible from the road due to old trees lining the creek. We are hopeful to work with council to create a clean up the creek community project, however this is a process we need to go through.
We have also been given approval to reinstate the original heritage front post and rail fence, giving the pub a fresh, friendly and welcoming face, as well as provide a safety barrier from the road. An interactive kids play area and kids club will also be included in this stage of the development with a moonlit cinema for kids to enjoy a film while parents relax and enjoy a meal and a refreshing beverage.
The whole is experience is being built around the rich history of the pub and Picton itself and we can’t wait to share it with you as it all unfolds.