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the HOTELS of Thomas Alfred URWIN

Journal by ngairedith

THOMAS ALFRED URWIN (1840-1911)
and his hotels

25 Feb 1867
... The comfortable and convenient GAWITH'S HOTEL has been re-opened by Mr Thos. Urwin. The accommodation is unequalled. Private Rooms, Choicest Wines and Liquors, Stabling of the best description. A Porter up all night

16 March 1869 - WELINGTON
...Mr Thomas Urwin, who has recently opened the commodious and spacious hotel in Thorndon, known as the METROPOLITAN HOTEL, has, in addition to other conveniences, added to it one of Alcock's latest improved billiard tables, fitted with patent elastic cushions, which will be ready for players this evening, for the first time. Gentlemen residing in the vicinity will find what has long been felt as a want now supplied

26 July 1869
... An application for transfer of license for the METROPOLITAN HOTEL, from Thomas Urwin to Edward Player, was granted

1 July 1971 - WELLINGTON
... We understand that the friends of Mr Urwin, the new proprietor of the NELSON HOTEL, are to meet at a complimentary supper to-night, at 8 o'clock, to celebrate his fresh start in business. Mr Urwin has had lengthened experience of hotel management in Wellington, there is no doubt he will now achieve all the success he deserves
... AND - Mr Urwin's installation as "Boniface" of the Nelson Hotel was celebrated on Saturday night by an opening supper, at which some 40 of his friends were present. The supper was served up in capital style, and the attending Hebes were alike fascinating and attentive to the assembled guests. C. B. Borlase, Esq., M.P.C., occupied the chair, while Joseph Masters, Eq., occupied the vice-chair. After the usual loyal and patriotic toasts had been propose the Chairman called for bumpers to drink the toast of the evening, viz, "Our Landlord", coupled with the name of Mr Urwin. In a brief but happy speech, the Chairman rapidly reviewed the past career of Mr Urwin in Wellington, alluded to his previous experience in the capacity of 'Mine Host", and eulogised the courtesy, urbanity, and obliging dispostions he had ever shewn towards all with whom he had been brought into contact, either in business or social life. The toast was drunk with great enthusiams, and "all the homors". Mr Urwin made an appropriate reply. Several other toasts were proposed, viz., "The Superintenddent and Provincial Council", "The City Council", and "Prosperity to Wellington; and with laugh and joke and song and story, the remainder of the evening flew quickly by. Mr J. H. Marriott, Mr Pratt, and some other of the company sang some capital songs; and when the time of breaking up arrived, everybody, while wishing Mr Urwin prosperity in the future, united in expressing the opinion that they had enjoyed the supper, and had "a good time of it"

18 July 1871
... For the METROPOLITAN HOTEL, Molesworth street, Wellington from T. Urwin to James Osgood. NELSON HOTEL; Lambton Quay,
(name changed to AULD SCOTLAND) from T. Wilson to Thomas Urwin

18 Jan 1872
... Thomas Urwin, late of the AULD SCOTLAND HOTEL, will have a house-warming in his new premises, the POST OFFICE HOTEL, better known as the "EXCHANGE", opposite the Post Office. He has much improved the house, both inside and out, as those who may accept his invitation to supper this evening will have every opportunity of noticing

17 Nov 1873
... To-day an addition was made to the list of places where a good lunch can be obtained in the city. Mr Thomas Urwin opened a new luncheon-room at the POST OFFICE HOTEL and obtained a fair share of public patronage. He offers a cold collation, and a cup of tea or coffeee or a glass of beer for the sum of one shilling (eqivalent in 2011 to $1.20), and from his well-known ability as a caterer we have no doubt Mr Urwin will find his new venture prove a success

23 Dec 1873
... Mr George Thomas sold a cottage and land (4 acres) at Karori this day for £250 (Dec 2011 equivalent of $30,600),Mr Thomas Urwin, POST OFFICE HOTEL, being the purchaser

2 March 1874
... We notice that Mr Thomas Urwin, the well-known host of the POST OFFICE HOTEL, annouces that having leased the grand stand refreshment rooms, he will be prepared to offer visitors to the races a cold colation embracing all the delicacies of the season. Mr Urwin's ability as a caterer is so well-known, and the accommodation afforded by the grand stand so superior to anything we have before had upon our racecourse that his luncheon will form a new and agreeable feature in the attractions to visitors

20 Sep 1875
... We hear that the Volunteer Amateur performers were very liberally invited by Mr Urwin of the POST OFFICE HOTEL, to supper after the performance

23 May 1876
... We learn the Mr Charles Brown, formerly landlord of the UNION HOTEL, Willis-street, has leased the POST OFFICE HOTEL, Grey-street, from Mr Urwin, taking over the stock and furniture at a valuation. All the requisite forms were completed to-day, and Mr Brown will take possession on the 30th

15 June 1876
... At a meeting of the directors of the Welligton Public Hall Company, held at the Theatre yesterday afternoon, an offer was submitted by Mr Urwin, late of the POST OFFICE HOTEL, to lease the vacant piece of ground adjoining the Theatre Royal, with a frontage of ninety-six feet to Lambton Quay and fifty feet to Johnston-street for twenty-one years, at a rental of £3 per foot frontage for the first seven years, £4 for the next even, and £5 for the last seven years. The nature of this offer having got wind, slightly higher tenders were received ffrom two other persons, on which Mr Urwin increased the amount of his offer by 11s per foot per annum, making the rentals for the three septennial periods respectively £3 11s., £4 11s., and £5 11s. After some consideration, the directors decided to accept Mr Urwin's offer, and agreed to grant him a lease accordingly. Mr Urwin intends to erect a first-class hotel on this excellent site

21 July 1876
... The tender of Mr James Ranson, builder, has been accepted for the erection of the new THEATRE ROYAL HOTEL, for Mr Thomas Urwin. One or two small details as to price are not yet definately settled, but the total cost will exceed £4000 (2011 equivalent of $574,000). The building will be a remarkably handsome one, and a great ornament to Lambton Quay and Johnston-street, replacing the present unsightly bare corner. The hotel will contain between 40 and 50 rooms. Mr Turnbull is the architect

5 Dec 1876
... THEATRE ROYAL HOTEL - Mr Ollivier appeared for the applicant, Mr Urwin, and applied for an adjournment of the application until the building should be completed. The Bench, on the ground that they had already decided to grant no licenses for buildings which were not finished, refused the application for license, and also the application for adjournment. A fresh application would have to be made

6 March 1877 - STILL WAITING
... Mr Urwin, through Mr Travers, applied for a license for the THEATRE ROYAL HOTEL. He stated the Mr Coker, of the OCCIDENTAL HOTEL, intended to oppose the granting of the license, but nevertheless he submitted that a license should be granted, because Mr Coker was unable to supply all the demands which were made on him whilst performances were going on at the Theatre. The new hotel would be a great convenience to the theatre-going portion of the commuinity ... Mr Urwin stated that he had leased the ground on which the hotel was built for 21 years from the Public Hall Company at a rental of £350 a year for the first seven years, £450 for the next seven years and £550 for the remainder of the term. After twelve years experience as a publican in Wellington, he was of opinion that a hotel which would give additional sleeping accommodation was required. The case was adjourned for a week

13 March 1877
... The Licensing Court will sit on Friday next, at noon, when it will be decided whether Mr Urwin will get a license for the THEATRE ROYAL HOTEL or not. We believe the techical objection to granting the license is utterly frivolous

17 March 1877
... Mr Thomas Urwin invites his friends to a champagne luncheon, at the THEATRE ROYAL HOTEL, on Wednesday next at 1 pm., to celebrate the opening of that fine building which excites general admiration on the part of the theatre-goers every evening

21 March 1877
... Mr Thomas Urwin, landlord of the THEATRE ROYAL HOTEL, celebrated the opening of that fine building this afternoon by a champagne luncheon, which took place in the noble dining room of the hotel. ABout 100 sat down, including representatives of nearly all the leading business firms in the city. Mr Beauchamp (of Beauchamp, Campbell and Co.) was voted to the chair, and proved an admirable chairman. A splendid spread having been done ample justice to, and the usual loyal toasts having been duly honored, the chairman called on all present to drink health and prosperity to their worthy and enterprising host, remarking that Mr Urwin had built a house which was "a light to lighten the Gentiles, and the glory of his people Israel" (great laughter and applause); and adding his belief that if such banguets as these would only occur twice or thrice a week, the loafers about town would not have to look forward to their English remittances with such anxiety as at present. (Laughter and cheering). The toast was received with immense cheering. Mr Urwin returning thanks, sketched the history of his business life in Wellington, and expressed his conviction that, even if he were unpopular with some people just now, the better they knew him the better they would like him (Great aplause). The company then broke up

23 March 1877
... SUPREME COURT - In the matter of the Licening Court and Mr Urwin's license for the THEATRE ROYAL HOTEL

25 May 1877
... WELLINGTON FIRE BRIGADE BANQUET - The banquet was served in really admirable style by Mr Thomas Urwin, of the Theatre Royal Hotel, the viands and drinkables being excellent both in quantity and quality

9 Oct 1877
... At the Resident Magistrate's Court this afternoon, the license of Thomas Urwin, for the THEATRE ROYAL HOTEL, was transferred to Thomas Bailey

15 Nov 1877
... We hear that Mr Urwin is to be the new landlord of the FORESTERS' ARMS HOTEL, Greytown

18 Dec 1877
... THEATRE ROYAL HOTEL - This was an application for the confirmation of a temporary transfer from Thomas Urwin to Thomas Bailey. It was adjourned from the last Court sittings, in consequence of complaints made against the house by the police. Inspector Atcheson explained that Bailey had allowed the house to be a resort for prostitutes, and there was also a 'fishy' transaction about a watch, in which the barman was concerned, but that would come out in the Supreme Court. The house was now better conducted. Mr Ollivier and Mr Cheeseman, who appeared in support of the application, promised that every care should be taken in future to keep the house free of objectionable characters. The license was granted, but Mr Bailey was called forward and warned that if he did not conduct his house better he would lose the license

2 Sep 1878
... DUFF'S HOTEL - Transfer of License, Mr Duff to Mr Urwin

17 June 1879
... On the 17th June, at the THEATRE ROYAL HOTEL, Mrs Thomas Urwin, of a son

18 June 1879
... Mr Infield, late of the POST OFFICE HOTEL billiard room, has leased from Mr Urwin the billiard room in connection with the THEATRE ROYAL HOTEL

20 Aug 1879
... MEETING OF CREDITORS Mr Urwin explained that he had spent a great deal of money lately in improving the hotel ...

16 Dec 1880
... A meeting of the creditors of Thomas Urwin, of Wellington, hotelkeeper, was convened at the Supreme Court House

4 Jan 1881
... There was a short sitting of the Bankruptcy Court at noon to-day and Mr Thomas Urwin's discharge was granted

24 Feb 1881
... Application for the transfer of License: Thomas Urwin, THEATRE ROYAL HOTEL, to Charles J. S. Grant

15 March 1881
... Mr T. Urwin, recently of the Theatre Royal Hotel, Wellington, has taken the MARQUIS OF NORMANBY HOTEL, Carterton. He announces that all customers may depend upon receiving the best attention and treatment

1 July 1881
... at the MARQUIS OF NORMANBY, Carterton, the wife of Thomas Urwin, of a daughter

9 Aug 1881
... The WELLINGTON HOTEL, Molesworth-street, has changed hands. Mr Thomas Urwin being the purchaser at something under £1000 (2011 equivalent $160,700), having already taken possession

1 Dec 1881
... Transfer of License - Annie Elizabeth Osgood to Thomas Urwin, WELLINGTON HOTEL, Molesworth-street

29 Aug 1882
... We notice that Mr Urwin has become proprietor of the MELBOURNE HOTEL, Willis Street, which name, we understand, is to be changed to the CLAREDON. We wish him every success in his new venture

14 March 1883
... A transfer of the License of the MELBOURNE HOTEL, Willis street was effected from Thomas Urwin to Robert Walker

6 June 1883
... An application for the transfer of the license of the PAHAUTANUI HOTEL from Mrs Mullens to Thomas Urwin was granted

18 Sep 1884
... An application for the transfer of the license of the PAHAUTANUI HOTEL from Thomas Urwin to Alfred Brady was granted

5 March 1885
... A transfer of the license of the KARORI HOTEL, Tinakori-road, from Thomas Urwin to William Dick. There was no appearance of the latter, who has held a temporary license for some time past. The Chairman said it was necessary that Mr Dick should attend, because he (Mr Allen) wished to speak to him about the manner in which the hotel had been conducted lately. Sunday trading appeared to be carried on to a considerable extent in the Thorndon Licensing District, people being frequently seen emerging from hotels every Sunday with bottles of something in their possession. Replying to a question, Inspector Goodall stated that William Dick, to whom it was proposed to transfer the license of the Karori Hotel, had for some time occupied the position of barman at the New Zealand Hotel. Mr Ames, Clerk to the Bench, explained that publicans were not in the habit of attending the meetings of the committees. The Bench waited a quarter of an hour for the applicant to turn up, and as he did not put in a appearance at the expiration of 15 minutes the application was adjourned until to-morrow. It was pointed out that if he did not attend then the hotel would have to be shut up

14 April 1885
... A temporary transfer has been granted to Thomas Urwin from Alfred Leach for the license of the BRANCH HOTEL

20 April 1885
... Mr T. Urwin, one of the best known Bonifaces in Wellington, has, we observe, entered into possession of the BRANCH HOTEL, and announces that it will soon be prepared for the reception of boarders. Mr Urwin's many old friends will no doubt be glad to see him once more established in a central business position

28 May 1885
... Mr Thomas Urwin, who has recently acquired the lease of the BRANCH HOTEL, at the corner of Lambton Quay and Woodard-street, has effected quite a transformation in the place. The house has been thoroughly renovated, being re-papered and re painted throughout, whilst the general appearance of the hotel outwardly has been considerably improved. Mr Urwin's experience as a licensed victualler has enabled him to convert what formerly was little more than a mere drinking saloon into a comfortable family hotel. The sitting and bedrooms have been newly furnished throughout, and are pictures of neatness, combined with comfort

3 June 1885
... LAMBTON LICENSING BENCH - regarding an application made by Thomas Urwin for a license for the BRANCH HOTEL, Inspector Goodall said that the house had been recently improved. The applicant had taken a cottage at the back for the use of the family, and the hotel was now larger than some of those which had just been licebsed by the Bench. Last year an objection was made to the hotel, and the Bench then decided that it must be rebuilt before the present meeting took place. He had no objection to the house as it now stood. The applicant informed the Bench that there were now 13 rooms available fo boarders. Some of the bedrooms were double rooms. Mr Shaw appeared for the applicant, and stated that his client had no obection to the application being adjourned until the Bench were able to inspect the house. Mr Barnett thought it was unnecessary to make an insection but the other members of the Bench different with him on this point, and the application was adjourned for a fortnight

11 June 1885
... The Chairman said that the Committee having inspected the BRANCH HOTEL, Lambton Quay, was satisfied with the accommodation, and had decided to grant an 11 o'clock license to Thomas Urwin.

30 Dec 1885
... THE FIRE ON LAMBTON QUAY ... Mr Urwin was also a loser to a considerable extent by damage through removal of the contents of his hotel and cottage. He informs us that his bar was rushed by a number of men, who tore down the bottles and decanters from the shelves and helped themselves freely to the contents. He managed, after a strugglle to close the hotel and side doors, but even then would-be-helpers poured into the house from the rear, and, but for the assistance rendered by Detective Inspector Browne and a couple of constables, his loss would have been heavier than it was. The furniture was thrown out of the windows in a most reckless manner. The timepieces were thrown about anyhow, and on expensive marble clock, valued at seven guineas [i(2011 equivalent of $1400), was hurled to the ground and broken. ALSO READ: FIRE IN THE CITY which mentions Thomas a number of times ... In December 1885 the Woodward Street corner was occupied by the BRANCH HOTEL. Though not on the same site, it probably continued the traditions of the earlier South Sea Hotel. Its landlord was Thomas Urwin, an old man-o-warsman of the British navy who held the Baltic medal for service there on a frigate during the Crimean War, and a New Zealand war medal for service in Taranaki in the 1860s. As one of the province's most experienced hotelkeepers he had taken over the Branch Hotel in April 1885, and immediately moved to meet a resolution of the Lambton Licensing Committee in mid 1884 that it must be rebuilt. The licensing committee's annual meeting on 3 June 1885 gave close attention to the Branch, for it had not been rebuilt but only thoroughly renovated. At the hearing it may have helped Urwin that one of the five committee men was his neighbour a little further along the Quay, plumber John Edward Hayes, and that the police evidence was given by Inspector Goodall, with whom he apparently had good relations. Both these men were to be involved along with Urwin in the 29 December blaze. Hayes, like Urwin, had moved in the rough and tumble of life, having come from Victoria as a youth to the Otago and Westland gold fields, and like Urwin his mind turned often to the harbour as he was greatly interested in rowing. Urwin produced favourable testimonials and handed in his boarders' register which showed a marked increase in lodgers since he had taken over. Goodall reported the police perfectly satisfied with the way the house was run. Considerable improvements had been made, and Urwin and his family lived in a cottage behind the hotel to leave more room for boarders.

11 Jan 1887
... An application has been made to the Lambton Licensing COmmittee for the transfer of the license of the BRANCH HOTEL from Thomas Urwin to Patrick O'Shea

10 Feb 1887
... We see by the Rangitikei Avocate that Mr Thomas Urwin is aboout to take over the CLUB HOTEL, Marton

10 April 1888
... the WRECK OF THE WEATHERSFIELD ... MR Thomas Urwin, the proprietor of the TELEGRAPH HOTEL, Otaki
of note in May 1888 Thomas Urwin was charged with assaulting the Otaki School Principal, C. W. Lee, because he 'pulled his nose' for having expelled his children from the school. The case of his having used bad language that was unfit for children to hear, was withdrawn as he made a public apology

27 Dec 1888
... We understand that Mr Thomas Urwin, a well-known Wellington hotelkeeper, has purchaed the WHITE SWAN HOTEL, Cuba street, from Mr J. Bradley

2 March 1889
... Inspector Thomason drew the attention of the Committee to a statement in the police report that Mr Urwin, in whose name the license of the CLYDE QUAY HOTEL stood, did not now reside on the premises, and apparently had no interest in the business. Mr Thomson explained that Urwin and the licensee of the WHITE SWAN HOTEL had exchanged houses but neither of them had obtained a license for the hotel in which he at present resided, and as a matter of fact each was selling liquor without being licensed to do so

7 June 1889
... New licenses for old houses. Thomas Urwin, WHITE SWAN HOTEL, Cuba stret. The application was granted, as was also one for an extension to 11 o'clock

19 Feb 1890
... Mr Alick Black, late of the FORRESTER'S ARMS HOTEL, Ghuznee-street, has purchased, through Messrs Dwan Bros., the well-known hotel brokers, Mr T. A, Urwin's interest in the WHITE WAN HOTEL, Cuba-street. The new landlord took posession to-day

1 March 1890
... It was decided in the case of Alexander Black, who had received a temporary transfer of the WHITE SWAN HOTEL from Thomas Urwin, to permit him to carry on under the present license until the next meeting, as he had not had time to give the necessary notice of transfer before the present sitting of the Bench

5 April 1890
... Mr Thomas Urwin, late of the WHITE SWAN HOTEL, Cuba-street, has purchased Mrs L. Craig's interest in the BRITANNIA HOTEL, Willis-street, through Messrs Dwan Bros. The new landlord entered into possession on Thursday

1 May 1890
... I, Thomas Urwin, of Wellington, do hereby give notice that I desire to obtain, and will at the next Licensing Meeting to be holden at Welligton on the 7th day of June 1890, apply for a certificate authorising the issue of a Publican's License for a house situate in Willis-street, called the BRITANNIA, containing 20 rooms, exclusive of those required for the use of the family, and owned by Mr Hume, as trustee

11 Aug 1890
... I, Thomas A. Urwin, being the holder of a Publican's License in respect of the house and premises situate at Willis street, and known as BRITANNIA HOTEL do hereby give notice that I desire to obtain and will, at the next Licensing Meeting to be holden at Wellington on the 6th day of September, apply for a transfer of the said license from myself to Frances Townsend, my appointee

12 May 1891
... Mr Thomas Urwin, a well-known Wellington publican, has purchased, through Dwan Bros, the RAILWAY HOTEL, Hawera, lately occupied by Mr John Prosser

9 Nov 1897 - NELSON
... I, Ellen Gilmer, of Nelson, being the holder of a Publicans Licene in respect of the house and premises situate at The Port, known as the CUSTON HOUSE HOTEL do hereby give notice that I desire to obtain, and will, at the next Licensing Meeting, to be holden at Nelson, on the 2nd ay of December, 1897, apply for a transfer of the said license from myself to Thomas A. Urwin, my appointee. The Police report showed certain repairs were neeed. The application was granted

23 Jan 1898 - NELSON TROTTING CLUB
... Outside licensed victualler's booth, T. A. Urwin




PHOTO
- FORESTERS ARMS HOTEL, Greytown (on the left)

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on 2012-04-14 20:23:13

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