Ward Lane Tavern

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Ward Lane, August 2006
The Ward Lane Tavern was a tavern/venue situated on Ward Lane (off Ward Street), which was the major venue for Hamilton's original bands through the early 1990s. Previously known as The Old Granary, The Ward Lane Tavern opened c.1985, but initially catered to inner city business people for after work drinks. Bands began to play around 1990. The first band booked was called Kaos, who eventually changed their name to the Clap, and became Ward Lane regulars (along with Whisperscream, Hapukalypse Now, and much later 5 Girls). Many of Hamilton's original bands played here in the following years. At its height, a cafe was opened upstairs called Naked Lunch.
Ward Lane advert, 1992

In 1994 the bar changed ownership and was converted into a wine bar, closing what was at the time the only inner city venue for original bands. The wine bar did not fare well, and with the advent of dance culture it was soon rebranded as Pulse. It has also served as a hip-hop/rap venue. From the late-1990s, it again became an occasional band venue, which continued until 2012.

A weird sort of decline

In 2021, Stuff "reported" that this has happened. If you ever wanted central Hamilton to contain a 550 square meter "New York style" loft apartment for two boomers to live in, it's great news. If you liked alleyways with loud late-night gigs and parties, it's not so good.

Setlist for the Bangs' gig at Ward Lane, one of several international bands who've graced the stage

Notable Gigs

External Links

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