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Tattersalls Hotel greets travellers heading through the junction of the Matilda Hwy, Queensland, and the Kidman Way, NSW, with a warm and friendly atmosphere courtesy of publican Mary Crawley and her family.

Story Andrew Hull photos Darren Clark

The guest register at Tattersalls Hotel, Barringun, on the New South Wales/Queensland border, makes for good reading. If you care to take a look, you will note names that include the famous, like Russell Crowe, the semi–famous, like Simon Westaway, and a host of everyday travellers. All are linked by the uniform nature of their comments, as almost all mention hospitality, with superlatives like “wonderful”, “marvellous”, “fantastic” and “inspiring”. More remarkable still is the fact that the vast majority of comments mention family, and use adjectives like “warm”, “friendly”, “welcoming” and “intelligent”.

Border pubTattersalls Hotel is the last of five hotels in Barringun, and one of only two on the isolated 250-kilometre stretch between Bourke, NSW, and Cunnamulla, Qld. Built in 1878, it is remarkable not for its longevity, or its typical low-pitched timber construction, but rather the exceptional hospitality found within. The Crawley family have been managing ‘Tatts’ since 1977, which is quite a stretch considering not only the nature of the business, but the isolation and extreme conditions of the region. However, this is a mere holiday compared to the previous family, the Lacks, who had the place for 67 years, from 1910 to 1977. Story end

Full story OUTBACK Issue 35 June/July 2004

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