I could sense trouble

“I had a knack with intoxicated people because, being a little bit of an intoxicated man myself at times, I could sense trouble and talk it out before it erupted. We had a big blue there one day with all the new Australians coming in and there was a big fight over time shifts at the steelworks; one bloke was jealous because he wasn’t getting overtime. This thing erupted and I got in amongst them and this seaman said to me, ‘who do you think you are, trying to break them blokes up, ‘Jesus Christ’?’. Anyway, he came back about 10 years later and looked over the bar at me and said, ‘Jesus Christ, you still working here?!’

Steve Guinery, 13 July 2017, Publican at The Port Kembla Hotel (Guinery’s) from 1970 – 1990. Pub was managed by the Guinery family for more than 50 years (1935 – 1990).

Photo of Steve Guinery at The Port Kembla Hotel in 2017, by Nina Kourea