Feeling at home: New Gantley’s Tavern co-owner Euan ‘Urb’ Paterson, right, with his female Speagle, Bob, and regular patrons Melissa Gold and Neil Burgess

After 20 years as a foundation director of local ski rental business Snowbiz, long-time Queenstowner Euan ‘Urb’ Paterson’s become the main lessee of Arthurs Point’s historic Gantley’s Tavern.

‘‘I just wanted to make a change in my life and do something completely different,’’ he says.

And at 58 he knew he needed to do it soon, ‘‘otherwise nothing was going to change’’.

As an Arthurs Point homeowner, he’d become a regular patron of Meron and Malcolm Blakey’s Cargo Gantley’s Pub, and made an approach, through a lawyer, to buy it.

‘‘It’s the old, ‘I like the business so much I bought it’ kind of thing.

‘‘I just felt the bones of the business were fantastic and the potential was massive.

‘‘And our family had a lot of history with it — my parents started eating here every Saturday night from ’72/’73 onwards.’’

Admitting pub ownership’s not his skillset, he’s roped in operations and location manager Courtney Cook and back-of-house staff member Katie Murray as fellow shareholders.

From winter, he’ll also be working in closely with the Blakeys, as they’ll run the under-construction Cargo Brew Hall/events venue immediately behind the pub.

‘‘We’ll change things incrementally, for the better, I hope, and try and make changes our clientele want,’’ Paterson says.

‘‘I want it to be a family-friendly, dog-friendly, child-friendly pub, with pub fare with flair.’’

A 45-year-or-so local, the one-time national ski racer and ski racing technical delegate, who credits former Lone Star bosses James ‘Chief’ Whelan and Andrew Jackson as his hospo idols, says he’s partial to a beer and a whisky himself.

‘‘But now it’s my business I’ve got to be very careful to not be my own best customer.’’

Meantime, he says he’ll be ringing in the New Year at his new joint with a rock ‘n’ roll party.

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