These musicians from local bands will be sad to see the Anchor Hotel close, after a long association with the music scene.
These musicians from local bands will be sad to see the Anchor Hotel close, after a long association with the music scene. Allan Reinikka

Bands adrift sans Anchor

A SAD era dawns on the old and new generations of local musicians.

They will soon be without one of Rockhampton’s regular live music venues as the Anchor Hotel prepares to close its doors after a long and admirable service to the music and arts community.

But before this happens, you can say your farewells, drown your sorrows and ponder the good times at the Final Anchor

Show on Saturday with the local bands that have helped make the Anchor a powerhouse of live music.

Ten of Rockhampton’s oldest and newest bands like Hammer Persuasion, Drawn To Shore, Trauma, Downpour, Lockjaw, The Semen Pandemic, As Rome Burns, Alex Grundy, Shawn Weinert and The Kaants will perform in one of the biggest All Ages shows it has seen, starting at 2.30pm.

The day is going to be huge, as the pubs means so much to so many people.

After running the Anchor Hotel for six years, owners Elliot and Henrieke Hilse are selling up and looking to close the pub on June 1, due to family commitments.

It will be sad to see the 123-year-old pub call last drinks, particularly since there is next to no other venue willing to host regular gigs or that sells pints of beer in Rocky.

The Hilses should be congratulated for their passion for local music and allowing bands to run the show and throw on gigs when they like, allowing gig-organising group Everest to call the place their home, and for de-licensing the venue for some great All Ages shows.

For those who haven’t been to the historic hotel, it is a hidden gem.

Its huge back bar suits bands performing to crowds of over 200, and the sound resonates nicely throughout the venue.

The Anchor was first known in the late-1800s as The Rose and The Shamrock, for the local English and Irish crowd. It was later named after two ferries that docked nearby.

It has had a long association with supporting local music and it will be a letdown for the music community if the new owners do not continue its tradition.

Michael Wall from Everest wanted to thank the staff and owners, local bands and everyone who supported the Anchor’s Aweigh shows.

“We would appreciate any help and anyone interested in hosting live music and all ages events,” he said.

IF YOU GO

What: Final Anchor All Ages Show.

Who: Hammer Persuasion, Drawn To Shore, Trauma, Downpour, Lockjaw, The Semen Pandemic, As Rome Burns, Alex Grundy, Shawn Weinert, The Kaants

When: Saturday, May 28, from 2.30pm

Where: Anchor’s Aweigh, the Anchor Hotel, Rockhampton

Cost: $10



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