Two much-loved pubs in Melbourne’s west shut permanently
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Article updated 11.30am Wednesday, September 9
Two popular pubs in Melbourne’s west have closed amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Morning Star in Williamstown and the Mona Castle in Seddon have shut their doors permanently.
Mona Castle publican Gary Clough said things “weren’t …100 per cent” before the COVID-19 pandemic hit, but the pandemic made things worse. He made the tough decision to shut the pub, as he couldn’t sustain full rent payments.
Mr Clough handed over the keys to the historic pub on Friday. The pub had been in operation for more than 140 years.
“We had a glimmer of hope there about two and a half months ago,” he told Neil Mitchell.
“The landlords wanting full rent, it got to a stage where we had to go into negotiations with the Small Business Commission.”
After the interview, the landlord contacted Neil Mitchell to say any suggestion that the pandemic and its effects caused the pub to close are wrong. Neil Mitchell also reported that there was a confidential settlement between the landlord and the publican.
“I’m not going to take sides on this, it’s clearly complex and clearly difficult,” Neil said on Thursday.
“Emotions run high.
“I just have to wonder how common it is to have these similar sad human disasters emerging across the state.
“They are bad times for a lot of people.”
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Meanwhile, the Morning Star took to Facebook on Monday evening to announce it will not reopen.