Who needs a minimalist pub? Any good country pub worth its salt really should have local history displayed on its walls. Like the curiosity pubs of old there should be plenty to entertain the ‘out of towners’ and help them understand a little about the locals and their way of life. Sepia photos of wool drays up to their axles in mud. Beaming young blokes draped in dead rabbits or staggering under the weight of a fish. Dead livestock nailed to the walls. Heads of deer, snarling wild pigs and crocodiles that didn’t get away.
At the Commercial Hotel in Woods Point in Victoria, we learnt that the residents sheltered from the 1939 fires down a mine tunnel right in the heart of town and that the publican must have been blessed with a good sense of humour as one of the best examples was “The Losers Shooting Trophy” awarded to Ken Shaw in 1994 for missing a samba deer at 10ft and a dingo at 15feet.