Table tells a tale of pub's fiery demise

THOSE still unable to bear the loss of the Criterion Hotel will get their chance to claim a piece of spiritual memorabilia. 

Among $65,000 worth of items at this weekend’s 4Bryn auction is a table made from timber salvaged from the pub’s charred remains. 

But after a week of painstaking work, not to mention the age of the wood, it will cost more than a pint.

The opening price starts at $3900 but the sentimental value could be priceless.

Furniture maker Gordon Lanman handcrafted the timber back into use inside his Woolsthorpe workshop.

But he told The Standard the wood had a longer history than just holding up the ceiling of the pub. 

“The timber is Douglas fir. It would have been imported from North America pre-1830s. 

It was milled in the early 1880s and was mainly used as a structural timber,” Mr Lanman said. 

“I’ve tried to keep a story of the original timber in the table with some of the burn marks in it that put an end to the pub.

“Murray Murfett (Bryn’s father) is a friend of mine and we’ve got kids about the same age and it was a contribution I thought I could make.”

The Murfett family has been appealing for public support and donations to help Bryn regain use of his legs after a car accident in Thailand left him paralysed. Bryn’s brother and appeal chairman Rohan Murfett said the table was a heartfelt addition to the auction night. 

“It’s a major auction item for us. We hope anyone looking to add a contemporary dining table will purchase it,” he said. 

The auction will be held this Saturday at the Matilda Room of the Warrnambool racecourse at 7pm. 

The table will be on display at the Warrnambool Hotel until Saturday afternoon.

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