Inn re­open­ing is wel­comed

The Oban Times - - NEWS -

FOR THE first time in eight years, Oban’s old­est pub, the Oban Inn, opened its doors to the pub­lic, who were wait­ing in an­tic­i­pa­tion.

A crowd ap­plauded when one of the busi­ness’s part­ners, Mairi Lynch, opened the doors at 11am last Fri­day.

The two-storey pub, which was first opened in 1790, stayed busy un­til clos­ing at 1am. Man­ager Shovonne Yard­ley said the inn, which has been re­stored to how peo­ple re­mem­ber it, was ‘mobbed’.

The new own­ers, Mairi and Steven Shaw, also own Oban’s Tar­tan Tav­ern and the Rowantree Ho­tel. Speak­ing at the open­ing, Marie said the inn was the first busi­ness she owned in Oban, back in 1979.

‘It’s re­ally ex­cit­ing to have the Oban Inn fi­nally open again,’ she said. ‘It feels like a bit of a home­com­ing. In its day, the inn was one of the busiest pubs in Ar­gyll, with all man­ner of bands and mu­si­cians play­ing there, in­clud­ing Mike Scott from the Water­boys in an im­promptu jam ses­sion.’

The pub has a rich his­tory and that is es­pe­cially true for the chair­man of Dun­beg Com­mu­nity Coun­cil, Sean MacIn­tyre.

Sean first laid eyes on his would-be wife in the Oban Inn. ‘I first met Tracy in the Oban Inn,’ he said. ‘And I also asked her to marry me in there. Al­though I don’t re­mem­ber it,’ he joked.

Speak­ing about its re­fur­bish­ment, he said: ‘It’s good for the town.

‘It’s good to see that cor­ner be­ing done up in­stead of be­ing left to rot. And there’s no doubt I’m not the only per­son with fond sto­ries.’

Derek Con­nery, from Bid4Oban, said: ‘The re­fur­bish­ment of this iconic and his­toric build­ing has greatly im­proved the ap­pear­ance of the town and re­it­er­ates what a busy vi­brant town Oban is. I don’t think I have ever en­coun­tered such an air of ex­cite­ment for a pub open­ing as this. It just un­der­lines how im­por­tant this is to the town.’

Coun­cil­lor for Oban South and the Isles Roddy McCuish, said: ‘It’s fan­tas­tic to see this iconic build­ing back in use again and it com­pletes the whole Stafford Street area.

‘I’m ab­so­lutely de­lighted to see it busy and I be­lieve peo­ple have been com­ing from all over the coun­try to rekin­dle their mem­o­ries in this won­der­ful es­tab­lish­ment.’

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