Linville Hotel owners Leah and Paul Squire.
Linville Hotel owners Leah and Paul Squire.

Why some outback pubs will miss out on free XXXX beer

FREE beer is on its way to pubs and bars in outback Queensland just in time for happy hour, when restrictions allow venues in certain areas to open for business again.

The Queensland Government announced yesterday 3000 litres of XXXX Gold would be donated to licensed venues in outback Queensland.

But it is only pubs in outback Queensland set to receive the beer and only pubs who can open their bars to up to 20 people at a time from Saturday.

Even the Linville Hotel, which is a two-hour drive from Brisbane, will not be able to operate as the town is classed as regional, not outback.

The Linville Hotel can open but only to ten people at a time - a limit Lockyer Valley and Somerset bar owners have dubbed "not viable".

READ MORE: New rules might not be viable for Lockyer pubs, cafes

It also means the Linville Hotel misses out on free kegs of beer, as Linville Hotel co-owner Paul Squire discovered.

"Everyone is asking us whether we're classed as outback but we've finally got the map sent to us, outlining what's outback and what's regional," Mr Squire said.

"We're not outback - even Toowoomba and the Darling Downs aren't."

READ MORE: Cafe owners feel pressure to restart dine-in options

But even beer would not be enough to get business and running for the Linville Hotel.

"With only ten people dining, it's not even worthwhile opening for a country pub," Mr Squire said.

"By the time I've put staff on and gone through the rigmarole of staffing, checking everyone's IDs and telling those ten people they have to eat, drink and get out within an hour … It's a lot of work."

The Linville Hotel won't be opening on Saturday and Mr Squire said it wouldn't, even if 20 people were allowed in the venue at once.

"When they change it to 100 (would help)," he said.

"We wouldn't serve 100 every day but on the weekend we easily do."


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