Slim Dusty, Duncan and WestConnex

WestConnex is a motorway scheme currently under construction in Sydney. It hasn’t been unopposed. See WestCONnex Action Group. In November 2014 an iconic St Peters pub was threatened by the project.

A St Peters pub immortalised in a song faces an uncertain future because of motorway plans that will remove homes.

Like to have a beer with Duncan? Perhaps don’t drink at the Town And Country.

The St Peters pub, immortalised in the Slim Dusty song Duncan, faces an uncertain future because of the government’s – and Roads Minister Duncan Gay’s – plan for the WestConnex motorway

St Peters residents gathered at the hotel on Tuesday and Wednesday after authorities door-knocked the neighbourhood to say about 80 homes around the pub would be acquired for widened roads, near where a six-lane motorway is planned to emerge in 2019.

Some were distraught on hearing their homes could be acquired. Others were incredulous as they tried to comprehend how congested local roads could accommodate traffic from a new motorway linking St Peters with Sydney’s south-west…


The Town & Country pub in 2009: from the pub’s website

The famous Slim Dusty song came up in conversation yesterday. I vaguely remembered the WestConnex issue but only vaguely.

I love to have a beer with Duncan;
I love to have a beer with Dunc.
We drink in moderation,
And we never ever ever get rolling drunk.
We drink at the Town & Country
Where the atmosphere is great—
I love to have a beer with Duncan
Cos Duncan’s me mate.

There is a more recent story: Legal row leaves famous Town and Country pub with no beer – 2 October 2016.

Thirty-five years ago, the whole of Australia was singing along with Slim Dusty that they’d love to have a beer with Duncan at the Town and Country, because he’s a mate and the atmosphere of the pub is great. Sadly, no more.

The ambience of the legendary Sydney hotel immortalised in the hit song has now turned decidedly ugly, with the new owner suing the previous owner in the NSW Supreme Court in an altercation over the premises’ liquor licence.

And the Town and Country Hotel at St Peters, having fought off the threat from an extension to the WestConnex that once looked likely to give its last orders, has its doors closed once more while the court battle takes place, now becoming the embodiment of Slim Dusty’s other huge hit, Pub With No Beer.

‘‘That’s a real shame,’’ says Pat Alexander, the 77-year-old songwriter who penned the 1981 chart-topping Duncan that put country music icon Slim Dusty on TV’s Countdown for a solid five weeks and the Town and Country into the stuff of Australian legend…


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