Time is right to get out of the Blue

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Trev DenBaars enjoying time in front of the bar.
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The sale of Methven’s popular Blue Pub last week, has seen Trev DenBaars call final orders after 21 years leasing the business.

Trev has been part of the Methven pub scene for decades, with 24 years at Methven’s Brown Pub, and a prior seven years running VT’s Night club.

After seeing so many changes in his time and the progression both the Blue and Brown pubs have made, he feels now is the right time to take a step and call closing time on his much loved career.

“I would have liked to have done 25 years but it’s time to move on and get the health right and start enjoying retirement.

“There might come a time when I get a bit bored and might do a few things but nothing major. Maybe a casual job where you can drop your tools and play golf. There’s still plenty of New Zealand I haven’t seen, so will take the time to travel and explore with Deb in my camper van”.

In 2003 Trev bought the lease to the Blue Pub and since that time he’s overseen many changes.

In 2005, massive construction was put into place in a rebuild of the whole building. A lot of heavy steel work was used to protect the structure, which potentially saved it from any earthquake damage.

In his time there have been four different partnerships, with the most recent changeover taking place in 2013, seeing Trev’s wife, Deb Taylor, replacing former business partner, Greg Snelling.

He will miss his job very much.

Over the decades he has made so many friends both internationally and locally. Accompanied along the way with the support of some great staff, overseeing individuals who have progressed from washing dishes to eventually playing a key role in the general running of the pub.

He’s had so many highlights in his journey and the social aspect is the one he will hold fondest. Events such as ‘Peak to Pub’ and watching it grow over the years, catering for weddings and the use of their food truck for local events such as the A and P show. Even the unexpected big nights, where the team had to really pull together to assure everything ran smoothly are just more memories he will treasure forever.

Being a great publican was always paramount to him and he has always classed himself as a people’s person, enjoying many a social event. Last year he received the prestigious Lion Nathan Legacy Award, honouring his whole life as a publican, making him only the fifth person in New Zealand to get the award.

It’s an achievement he had to really earn as it covers every integral aspect of being a publican, from up keeping and holding high standards throughout and being heavily involved in the community.

Trev has also been on the hospitality board for 22 years, representing the Ashburton District and moving onto be country vice-president. Last year he was made a Life Member; he can still attend meetings and social events.

The decision to retire was something he pondered for a while but when covid hit he changed his mind and made sure the pubs made it through the difficult time.

He remodelled the business to insure it stayed afloat by offering a delivery service of food and beverages.

Even when they were back up and running again as normal, a change of licensing laws forced the difficult decision of changing the late night open hours from 3am to 1am.

Trev will still be running the Brown Pub until September 1, to help the transition from the new owners taking over the Blue to eventually running both pubs.