The Pub With No Beer will always be at Taylors Arm
By ANN-MARIE MAY
That is what Joyce Tudor thinks of the claims from the mayor of a Queensland town that The Pub With No Beer at Taylors Arm is a fake.
Mrs Tudor has stepped into a state of origin war of words between the townships of Taylors Arm and North Queensland's Ingham after Ingham's mayor, Pino Giandomenico, said the popular North Coast watering hole was in fact a pretend pub with no beer.
During the mid-'50s Mrs Tudor, then Mrs Eke, leased and managed the pub with her late husband, Bob, for four years. At that time the pub was called the Cosmopolitan Hotel.
"It breaks my heart. It is so sad to think that someone is trying to say these silly things that are just not true," Mrs Tudor said.
Ingham locals say the bar be-hind the story is the Day Dawn Hotel, now known as Lee's. It is said local veteran and poet Dan Sheahan entered the pub in 1943 to find American soldiers had drunk all the grog.
Sheahan wrote a poem about his experience, which was published in newspapers and adapted in 1957 by songwriter Gordon Parsons.
"It makes me really mad when people try to steal glory that belongs to Ingham," Cr Giandomenico told the Townsville Bulletin.
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"Everyone knows Dan Sheahan penned the poem, A Pub Without Beer, and that Gordon Parsons reworked it into The Pub With No Beer that was sung by Slim Dusty.
"The song's nothing about a pub down south."
Mrs Tudor's response to this is 'what a joke!'
"Of course the song is about our pub. I could tell you about every character in the song. The cook, the bum, the dog ? I knew them all," she said.
"You could put your money on the time the dog would arrive every day waiting for its owners."
Clearing up the incorrect story that the pub ran out of beer due to flooding, Mrs Tudor said the truth was there were many times the kegs ran dry due to strike action.
"It was terrible in those days with many strikes. There were lots of times, mostly around Christmas and busy times, when our carrier would go to Macksville to collect the beer and it wouldn't be there," she said.
Mrs Tudor, now in her 80s, and living in Tweed Heads, remembers clearly the many times when Gordon Parsons would stay at the pub.
"I knew Gordon very well," she said.
"He used to keep his songs in a leather bag, which he often left with me while he went away before returning for his pumpkin or shepherd's pie.
"I can remember the time when Slim Dusty came and asked Gordon for the song. "The music they put it to was the old folk song Beautiful Dreamer."