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The Fermanagh Hotel when it was known as the Kiama Hotel in 1880 (circled).
By MICK ROBERTS ©
DESCRIBED as a “flash looking little cab driver”, Irishman Jimmy Barton and his wife Elizabeth established what is today considered Kiama’s oldest operating business.
Trading as the Kiama Hotel on the corner of Teralong and Shoalhaven Streets, the Bartons licensed ‘The Fermanagh’ on April 6 1853 making it the seaside village’s third public house.
Less the Bartons would realise at the time that the watering hole they opened would continue to flourish for another 160 years (2011).
Barton named his pub after his birthplace, the county of Fermanagh in Northern Ireland. It was a wise choice for the inn’s ‘sign’. The majority of the population of Kiama was of Northern Ireland origin and the familiar name of Fermanagh, no doubt, attracted many an Irish settler for a ‘long beer’ or two. Barton wasn’t…
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