People power saves popular Four in Hand Paddington pub from residential conversion

People power saves popular Four in Hand Paddington pub from residential conversion
People power saves popular Four in Hand Paddington pub from residential conversion

The beers at Paddington's Four in Hand Hotel will continue to be poured after people power stopped its mooted residential conversion.

The popular pub is set to remain trading, to the joyous shouts of the locals, who'd campaigned against its sale and conversion into a luxury home.

The saviour emerged yesterday afternoon in the Good Beer Company, headed by George Azar and run by his nephew John, who paid around $7 million for the premises. 

"It would be a shame to lose it," John told the Daily Telegraph.

"It's a great pub," adding he was keen to introduce lots of craft beers behind the heritage bar. 

The hoteliers own two other pubs in the east, Randwick's The Dog Hotel and the Keg & Brew in Surry Hills.

The listing of the landmark Sutherland Street building triggered protests against the possibility of its conversion into a residence or even worse apartments.

The locals campaigned that the uniqueness of Paddington would be lost. 

Woollahra Council stepped in with its heritage protection of the pub's facade.

The hotel was offloaded by the hotelier brothers Mitchell and Ashton Waugh who bought it in 2015 for $8 million with the celebrity chef Colin Fassnidge soon after departing the 1870s establishment.

The Waugh brothers moved the valuable pokies licence to other venues and were initially seeking to sell the property as residential.

Paddington has lost other pubs including the Windsor Castle which became an $11.85 million four level house.

The local resident lobby group amassed over 12,000 signatures urging it remain as a hotel.

Some of the big names who campaigned included House Husbands star Rhys Muldoon, Prime Media executive John Hartigan, local solicitor Nick Eddy and the formerThe Daily Telegraph and New York Post editor Col Allan and. 

"Quite clearly there are hospitality properties out there which enjoy alternative use opportunities; however, in my view some are simply either too iconic or important to The Fabric of a community to make wholesale changes to, and I think this is true of the Four in Hand," listing agent Andrew Jolliffe said.

Jolliffe said it was "incumbent" upon the vocal Paddington community to back up the fervor shown over recent weeks with a show of patronage.

This article was first published in The Daily Telegraph.

Paddington Pub


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