Day At The Track

Multi-million dollar makeover at Menangle

05:12 PM 31 Mar 2019 NZDT
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Horse and Jockey Inn The Horse and Jockey Inn
Artist impression: Exterior view of complex formerly known as the Horse and Jockey Inn
Renovation starts: Builders are about to descend on the site known as The Horse and Jockey Inn. A$10 million makeover will take place in the next six months
Simon Bennett Photo

The "go" button has been pressed on a harness racing $10 million project to completely transform a once popular Macarthur watering hole.

A lengthy process to obtain all necessary development approvals has been finalised and tomorrow morning, weather permitting, builders and a bevy of construction workers will descend on the Horse and Jockey Inn site at Menangle Park.

If all goes to plan, former patrons, other locals and Sydney day-trippers alike will be able to enjoy a beer at the new-look venue by the end of September.

The makeover is stage one of Club Menangle's ambitious plan to build a large entertainment precinct from the Inn all the way back to Tabcorp Park.

The wait is almost over: The site of the old Horse and Jockey Inn which was bought by Club Menangle. Picture: Chris Lane

 The wait is almost over: The site of the old Horse and Jockey Inn which was bought by Club Menangle. Picture: Chris Lane


Eventually, the precinct will contain a second club, hotel, movie theatre, bowling alleys and an indoor sporting complex.

The pub has not traded since 2015 when NSW Harness Racing bought the site.

Club Menangle chief executive Bruce Christison said much effort had gone into ensuring the revamped venue would have broad appeal, with multiple dining and bar facilities able to cater for casual and formal gatherings.

The kitchen will be set up to cater for 500 sit-down diners across a 200-seat function room, a formal restaurant and casual dining areas on the upper and lower terraces.

"We've been focused on creating a destination venue without losing the country pub feel," he said.

"In the past, the inn was weather challenged and if the weather was wet or cold people didn't come."

Mr Christison said inclement weather wouldn't be a problem in the future with louvred roofs covering the outside terraced areas.

Menangle Park is home now to just 257 people but planned housing development will bring thousands of people to the area within a few years, a detail not lost on Mr Christison who expects the new complex will be popular with new residents.

"We will be there when the first houses in the new estates are built," he said. " Usually something like this comes a long time after residents move in."

Mr Christison said historic Menangle House, located at the front of the site, would remain untouched and protected during construction works.

He said possible future uses for Menangle House were being considered but no decision was likely for some time.

"We will be guided by what our patrons and local residents want us to do," he said.

"There are lots of ideas being thrown about, it could be a wine or whiskey bar, a day spa even a wonderful entrance to our function centre.

Watch the videos below to experience a virtual walk though showing what the revamped venue will look like once complete.

The Horse and Jockey Inn - new-look exterior


Horse and Jockey Inn - new-look interiors
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