By Emily Pemberton
The Worldsend Hotel has closed its doors for the last time after two decades of service.
The pub was in prime location for UniSA students and was a well-known social hub for students at the City West campus.
Fortunately, local nightclub manager, Hugo Pedler, and business partners have taken over the pub and are rebranding it as the West Oak.
“A few of us studied at UniSA and remember good times at this pub, and we wanted to bring back some of its former glory,” Pedler said.
“We are taking the Hotel back to its original heritage – colour scheme, materials, front bar, and good times. Originally called ‘The Royal Oak’ when it opened back in 1838, the hotel has one of the longest continuous liquor licences in South Australia.”
The Worldsend was renowned for live music and comedy evenings.
It was an integral location for up-and-coming artists, including the Hilltop Hoods.
Hugo wants to continue some aspects of the Worldsend, but create a new and inviting space to draw a crowd.
“The West Oak Hotel will focus on a weekly live music offering, paired with a heritage front bar and a new lush green beer garden.”
Pedler and his business partners were attracted to the sale by the opening of the new Royal Adelaide Hospital, which will bring a huge number of customers through their doors.
“The revitalisation of the west end [of the city] played a big part in our decision to take over the Worldsend Hotel,” Pedler said.
“Thanks to the expansion of UniSA and the new Royal Adelaide Hospital move there is a shift within the city of Adelaide from east to west.
“The West Oak will bring a local watering hole for university students and hospital staff alike back to the heart of the west end.”
Mitch Rose, barman and university student, worked at the Worldsend for over a year.
“I didn’t find out it was closing down until five minutes before my last shift, so it felt sudden for me,” Rose said.
“My favourite thing about Worldsend was you never knew what to expect. Every shift was a surprise. The live music was always good and the employees made the time go past quickly.”
“I think the new business will be really good, the Worldsend was becoming run down and needed a lot of work,” Rose said.
Bradley Donnell, UniSA visual arts student, visited the pub throughout his time at university.
“It was an easy access pub for students, which was always good for trying to drown stress,” Donnell said.
“I liked the look of the old-school pub, but I’m not surprised it closed down because it never seemed busy.”
Fellow UniSA visual arts student, Milo Trnovsky, regrets not spending enough time at the Worldsend before it closed down.
“I do have good memories of going there between my lectures and tutes for a beer with my friends,” Trnovsky said.
Trnovsky and Donnell are looking forward to seeing what the new pub offers UniSA students.
Pedler is excited for the new business to open, in hopes it will revitalise the West End.
“We want to make a space where everyone can hang in the sun, enjoy coffee, food and a few cold ones,” he said.
“West Oak Deli will be launching on Tuesday the 3rd October, trading from 7:30am until late, serving up coffees and pub sandwiches.
“We are looking forward to becoming a part of the UniSA culture for years to come.”
Image source: The Advertiser