Sunday, 17 August 2014

Star & Garter Inn, Richmond

The shop (formerly the Star and Garter Inn) and two dwellings were erected in the early nineteenth century as two workingman's cottages and an inn, types of co-joined structures once common but later becoming rare.  The land where these buildings are situated was granted to William Wise by Lieutenant-Governor George Arthur in February 1832.  It was part of a one acre block that extended between Bridge and Bathurst Street.

Wise split the parcel of land in two and in November 1841 he sold the northern half, which fronted onto Bridge Street, to Thomas Burgess for ₤250.  The conveyance document refers to the ‘dwelling house and stables erected by the said William Wise and lately occupied … by the widow White.’ Burgess sold the premises to William Cato, a storekeeper and transporter of goods between Richmond and Hobart.  Cato’s store only operated for a couple of years before the property was sold back to Burgess.
In October 1845, Burgess licensed the premises as a pub, the Star and Garter.  (This was the name of a famous pub on Richmond Hill, south-west London, England.)  The Star and Garter was operated by the Burgess family until 1864 and then by Henry Briggs until 1871.

The construction of new transport infrastructure in the early 1870s substantially reduced the amount of traffic passing through Richmond. The opening of the Sorell Causeway provided a more direct route between Hobart and the south-east, and when the Main Line railway was constructed it passed some eight kilometres to the north of Richmond. With less through traffic there was less demand for public houses and the Star and Garter was advertised for sale in November 1874.  The notice in The Mercury stated that ‘the Hotel contains Bar, Parlour, Dining room, Kitchen, and Scullery on the ground floor, large Cellar, and 8 Bedrooms up stairs … adjoining the Hotel are two stone fronted Cottages.’  The property didn’t sell at auction and wasn’t licensed as a pub again.

In October 1878 the premises were purchased by Thomas Clements, a carpenter, for ₤275.  Clements occupied the main building (the old pub) and rented out the two adjoining cottages.  Unfortunately, Clements went bankrupt and his mortgager auctioned the property in March 1885.  This time it was described as ‘a stone and brick dwelling house containing 12 rooms, with a fine shop front on Bridge Street.  Adjoining the shop are two stone cottages containing five and six rooms respectively, at present occupied by weekly tenants.’  Again, the property didn’t sell at auction and it was subsequently rented out by the mortgager.

The property was purchased for ₤360 by Edward Shearing in August 1917.  Shearing lived in the main building and rented out the adjoining cottages.  Shearing owned the property for more than thirty years. The buildings are still in excellent condition and are used by small businesses including an antique shop, an interior design business and a beauty shop.

Main Text & Information – Australian Heritage Database