Family devastated over closure of iconic restaurant
WEIS Restaurant has announced it will close after 46 years of operation, blaming council's decision to reject its application for a marquee.
Restaurant owner John Pohlman said economic factors, combined with a recent Toowoomba Regional Council decision to reject an application for a permanent functions marquee contributed to the decision.
The restaurant will close its doors on March 1.
Mr Pohlman said the iconic restaurant was closing, and not being liquidated. All creditors would be paid.
He also said vouchers and gift cards would be honoured or refunded and all staff entitlements would be met.
"We want to sincerely thank our loyal customers, staff and friends who have supported us over many years of trading. Without them, we would have closed years ago," he said.
Mr Pohlman said it was a sad decision from a family point of view.
He said the council decision was the straw the broke the camel's back.
"We didn't want to close it, but the council decision hurt us and any food business needs functions. If we don't have them, it's too hard."
Mr Pohlman said he had promised everyone who had booked that their events would go ahead, even if they were after the closing date of March 1.
He said the restaurant had been on the market for "a few years", and that there were people looking at buying.
"Whether that's just for the land or to build something here, I'm not sure," he said.
Mr Pohlman plans to work for Pohlmans Nursery after the closure.
Regular customer Edie Brown was celebrating her 88th birthday at the restaurant when she heard the news.
She was saddened to learn that her favourite restaurant would be closing down.
"I was disappointed with the council making them close that marquee down in the first place," she said.
Toowoomba Region Mayor Paul Antonio said council was saddened to hear of the impending closure of the restaurant which has been one of Toowoomba's best known restaurants for many decades.
"Council has remained willing to discuss reasonable options for the owners to operate a function centre on the site," he said.