Publican couple serve last drinks after 36 years
BERNIE Kerr credits his passion for more than three decades of running the Linville Pub with it being "in the blood".
The Linville publican and his wife Debbie served their last drinks after nearly 36 years of running the business on September 1, 2019.
The couple took over Linville Hotel, located two hours from Brisbane, at an opportune time for the business on December 9, 1983.
"My grandfather had the hotel in Cunnamulla, so to a degree it was in the blood to follow in his footsteps," Mr Kerr said.
He employed the current barman Ted Burrows who then mentored the new business owner with advice and direction.
Serving the beers at the pub meant the Kerrs were privy to many of the small town's events.
It was the choice place to drink for many locals and visitors over the years after rodeos, the Linville Picnic Races or the inner-pub cricket games.
Their CareFlight fundraisers brought the community together with business people travelling from Nanango and graziers from Mt Stanley.
"It was a combined effort," he said.
The Linville Pub was the place where discussions kept going about the railway closure marking the end of an era.
It was also where frustrations were voiced when talk ceased about a dam being built in Linville after the Palaszczuk government came into power.
Mr Kerr remembers the hive of activity and business during his early days at the pub when Tarong Power Station was nearing completion or when ETP came through directing the powerlines.
Mr Kerr said the town had grown slowly over the years and now had more of an ageing population.
"To be honest the town hasn't changed much at all," he said.
"There hasn't been a trend of younger people coming to the region, but most of those who come are single men which keeps the beer flowing."
Although the pub has treasured its heritage charm from the opening in 1887, the inner workings of the pub had kept up with modern times.
"The requirements from when I first went in there was basic, there was one beer on tap," he said.
The cold room was originally a plywood outing with walls full of saw dust.
Mr Kerr said in the early stages the pub meals were basic, featuring pies and chicken or beef rolls.
Now the menu outlines around 15 different meals which can be served at the Linville Pub.
He said it was just time for the family to finish up with the business.
"Physically it is very demanding," he said.
The couple are looking forward to having freedom with their time after the business.
"You didn't really have much time for the kids or yourself," Mr Kerr said.
They will be spending more time with family including their two daughters, 12 grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.