Australia’s Longest Bars

longest bar cartoon 1939

The longest bar in Australia calls for staying power and roller-skates… Smith’s Weekly February 4 1939.

captains flat hotel

The Captains Flat Hotel. Photo: captainsflat.org

THERE are a number of claims for the title of Australia’s “longest bar”.

When the newly completed Captains Flat Hotel in the Southern Tablelands of rural New South Wales opened in 1937 it boasted a public bar 32 metres or 105 feet long. The bar was said to be the longest in Australia at the time.

However, a year later, Victoria stole the title from NSW, when the Mildura Working Man’s Club built a T-shaped bar in 1938 that measured 285 feet in length.

In 1970 it was rebuilt with a hook and was noted in the Guinness Book of Records as holding world record length status. The bar was 91 metres (299 ft) long around “the centre line of the service surface” and had 32 beer taps. The bar was removed in 1995 during renovations to add poker machines.

The pub at Captains Flat can still claim to have the longest hotel bar in Australia. I would be interest to hear of any pub with a longer bar than 32 metres or 105 feet.

Other pubs that have claimed to have Australia’s longest bar include:

  • Big Bell, Western Australia: the hotel of an abandoned township in the Murchison region in Western Australia (72 feet).
  • Wiluna, Western Australia: The old Weeloona Hotel (demolished in the mid-1970s) was reputed to have the world’s longest bar. I have been unable to find the length of the bar. Can anyone help out with the length of the Weeloona Hotel’s public bar?
  • Melbourne, Victoria: The bar at The Trust in Flinders Lane is said to be over 40 metres (130 ft) long.
Weeloona Hotel 1930 Public Domain FLICKR

Weeloona Hotel, Wiluna, Western Australia, 1930s. Picture: Flickr, Public Domain

Big Bell Hotel WA 1

Big Bell Hotel, Western Australia, 1930s. Picture: State Library of Western Australia

Big Bell Hotel licensee Norm Fraser centre

Big Bell Hotel’s bar, with licensee Norm Fraser in the centre, 1930s. Picture: State Library of Western Australia

WHEN is a worker not a worker? They’ve got the answer in Mildura. It’s when he gets £1000 a year. Anyone who earns that much has to resign from the local Workers’ Club and can join the Settlers’ Club. The entrance fee to the Workers’ Club is ten bob, but there’s a waiting list of more than 3500. Incidentally, Mildura makes Wiluna gnash itsteeth because it has the longest bar in the world —385ft. of it. When the Yanks were here they copied the bar plan and took it home, where they planned to build an even bigger one. But when the completed job was measured it was 10in. short.

-The Daily News (Perth, WA) Friday 2 July 1948.

milduraworkersclub1961

Mildura Workers Club long bar 1961

Mildura Club

MILDURA Working Men’s Club, which in 1938 earned itself the distinction of having the longest bar In the world, 187 feet, has just elected its first three life members. They are Mr. C. Lambert (84), a foundation member of the club; Mr. L. Lay, a club trustee for 25 years, and Mr. C. Haynes, for 20 years club manager. At a presentation dinner, they gave an outline of the growth of the club, from its earliest days in 1893 when a small tin shed was the meeting place of some of the first settlers, to one of Australia’s biggest and best-known clubs, with a membership of 4000. Besides a membership of 4000, the club has a waiting list of 1200 prospective members and one of the finest buildings in northern Victoria.

FOOTNOTE: The Americans have since built a longer bar, and the 187 feet Mildura bar with 28 taps employing up to 40 barmen at peak periods is now only the largest in the southern hemisphere.

-The Farmer and Settler (Sydney, NSW ) Friday 10 December 1954.

bluey curley long bar


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Categories: Australian Hotels

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3 replies

  1. Does anyone know the Carr ant longest bar in Australiasia

  2. The longest bar in Australia is the bar at Captains Flat Hotel with out
    Question I would even say its the longest bar in the southern hemisphere

    • yep i agree mate. however i think the pub might be closed. i was there 5 or more years ago when the new owners took over… the bar was still there… it stretches through the public bar and into the dining area. the new owners where lovely and gave us a tour of the whole building, including the blood stains out back where the miners used to fight, up stirs and the cellar which still had some of the original 30s era equipment for the taps.

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