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    SETTING A BENCHMARK: Horsham’s Bull and Mouth publican Simon Mitchell wants the hotel to be a ‘driving force’ in providing high-quality live entertainment once the state returns to ‘COVID normal’. Picture: DYLAN DE JONG

Music is on the agenda at Horsham's Bull and Mouth Hotel


Horsham publican Simon Mitchell is determined his business will set a benchmark in hotel dining and entertainment when the Wimmera and Victoria emerge from the COVID-19 pandemic.

Mr Mitchell, whose Bull and Mouth Hotel is among recipients of State Government funding to support venues that promote live entertainment, said he looked forward to a return to normal. 

He said while the $13,000 grant fell short of going anywhere near what the pandemic had cost the business, any financial help was welcome.

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“From our perspective, we’ve invested heavily in making the Bull and Mouth Hotel up to a standard befitting of a regional centre that is obviously on the move,” he said.

“And when we emerge from all of this we hope to be a driving force in providing high-quality live entertainment.

“We’ll take what we can get at this stage. It’s been very tough but we have to look forward.

“The financial cost of the pandemic, especially on our industry, has been enormous and hopefully everyone, from the average pub-meal lover to the person who loves to let their hair down to some live music, understands how tough it has been.”

The Bull and Mouth Hotel was one of more than 100 live-music venues across the state to receive grants through a $3-million Victorian Music Industry Recovery program. The program offers grants of between $4000 and $50,000 to support artists, managers, promoters, booking agents, road crews and other workers to keep creating music, undertake professional and business training and develop COVID-safe ways of working.

Horsham’s Bull and Mouth Hotel has evolved into a standout entertainment venue through a dedicated effort to maintain a pub-music tradition forged over many years and now ingrained in regional Victorian culture.

“Most who know us would be fully aware of our commitment to provide live entertainment and that is only part of an overall package we will offer into the future,” Mr Mitchell said.

“While the funding from the government falls well short of the financial hardship we and  everyone else has experienced, it has least recognised that our hotel is one of the homes of live music in the Wimmera.

“We look forward to the time when we can get back to normal and everyone can come in, enjoy a cool drink, a good meal and some good music. We all need some respite.”

The grant program supports venues which have been closed since March, to cover overheads and put COVID-safe measures in place.

Under Victoria’s roadmaps for reopening, indoor live-music venues can reopen at the ‘last step’ with density quotients and patron caps in place.

Patron caps will lift when the state moves to ‘COVID normal’.

The entire September 30, 2020 edition of The Weekly Advertiser is available online. READ IT HERE!

The entire September 30, 2020 edition of AgLife is available online. READ IT HERE!