Thursday 22 February 2018

Last orders called for landmark pub

John Whelan

The pot-belly stove in the corner of Hume's Pub in Portlaoise is still up to heating the bar -- but instead of the usual customers sitting around the stove, valuers from Nama will soon be visiting the landmark public house.

The stove was bought by Arthur Hume for £2 from Davy Frayne in the Hammond-Lane foundry in Athy. But it won't be stoked again -- after 147 years, Hume's Pub called last orders for the final time earlier this month.

While the story of the demise of the rural pub has been well documented, Hume's Pub is slap bang in the middle of Portlaoise, on Main Street. The watering hole gives its name to the junction with the Well Road as Hume's Corner.

Noel Hume, 67, the fourth generation and final member of the family to pull pints there since 1863, sold the famous pub to a developer in 2004 as he and his wife Rosaleen, who have three daughters, Aishling, Aoife and Niamh, decided to call it a day.

"We were blessed and probably lucky to get out when we did," he said. "We had great times, but it's a tough business and a young man's game."

Noel has now turned his hand to one of his first loves, art and painting.

Sunday Independent

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