Busselton restaurant The Goose workers snapped up after devastating fire

Catherine MasseyThe West Australian
VideoFire has destroyed the iconic Goose restaurant on the Busselton foreshore

A mass of devastated Busselton chefs, bartenders, and waiters who suddenly found themselves unemployed when their foreshore workplace was destroyed by fire this week have been snatched up by eager-to-help hospitality venues in the South West.

More than 70 workers were left in the cold on Monday after a tumble dryer in The Goose Beach Bar and Kitchen’s utilities room caught fire at about 3am and engulfed the entire building.

And it was not long before the community rallied around them, with every single one of the iconic venue’s staff finding work at surrounding businesses within five days after a number of posts in online noticeboards.

The Goose owner Qi Eng was “overwhelmed by the support” and said she was delighted to see staff so quickly employed around town.

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“Our staff are our priority. The Goose has provided a living for so many people for such a long time. We are very happy to see all the support,” she said.

The Goose Beach Bar and Kitchen employee Kit Hutchins, assistant bar manager Lara Treacy, and kiosk manager Kiara Mitchell.
Camera IconThe Goose Beach Bar and Kitchen employee Kit Hutchins, assistant bar manager Lara Treacy, and kiosk manager Kiara Mitchell. Credit: Catherine Massey/Busselton Dunsb

Ms Eng has vowed to rebuild the popular destination and will offer its first available jobs to former employees.

“We are definitely rebuilding. I have already started the conversation with the architect, the planning process has begun but we will be closed for around 12 to 18 months,” she said.

Talks of a food truck on the foreshore called ‘The Gosling’ are also in progress to enable The Goose to maintain its presence on the foreshore during the rebuild.

“We are looking at alternative business opportunities to keep our popularity on the foreshore,” Ms Eng said.

City of Busselton mayor Grant Henley said he looked forward to working with the owners to bring The Goose back.

“It has been immensely reassuring to see the outpouring of community support for the owners and staff,” he said.

DFES have confirmed the fire was accidental and was the result of “spontaneous combustion in a dryer”.

The total damage bill for the venue was estimated to be between $5 million and $7 million.

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