By Andy Young

Sydney’s lockout laws have claimed yet another iconic venue, with the news that Bar Century on George Street in the centre of the city has closed its doors for the final time.

Licences have been held at the Bar Century location since 1940, but manager Cavan Pugh described the state government’s regulations for the Sydney CBD as a “contributing factor” in the bar’s closing, along with a rent increase.

Bar Century traditionally has a 1.30pm closing time, so while the restrictions on trading times imposed by the state government on licensed venues inside the Sydney CBD entertainment precinct won’t have changed operating times for the venue, the significant drop in foot traffic in the area has forced it to close its doors.

"There's definitely a downturn, there is no denying that. During peak times, numbers aren't as high as they used to be,” Pugh told Fairfax Media.

Duty manager Kiran Gurnani added: "There's a definite decrease in foot traffic. There's just straight up not as many people on the street as there were. Weekends in the city are just not what they used to be."

Often referred to as “the bar above Hungry Jacks” Bar Century was a favourite hangout for Sydney’s hospitality staff. Merivale chef Dan Hong wrote on Facebook: "Many memories shared here with the old Tetsyua’s crew back in the day."

The news of Bar Century’s closing was confirmed on its Facebook page, with the post: "Hello you dirty party animals! I'm sure you've all heard the rumours and unfortunately they're true; Bar Century is closing its doors for the very last time on the 14th of February.

"We've had some good times, some bad smells, and lost our left shoe on the sticky dancefloor, and it'll be a sad day to know the reliable BC will be gone for good. In typical fashion however we'll be going out with a bang. 

"Come say goodbye, have one last dance, and let’s see off our favourite bar in true Bar Century style."

Sydney’s lockout laws have come under increasing scrutiny in recent weeks as the two-year anniversary of their introduction came around. Last week former High Court judge the Hon. Ian Callinan AC QC was appointed to head the review of the 2014 legislation.

The Shout Team

The leading online news service for Australia's beer, wine, spirits and hospitality industries.

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