Your browser version is outdated. We recommend that you update your browser to the latest version.

Lawlor's Billiards Saloon & Barber Shop (1911)

75 Main Street

 

Lowood's first billiards saloon was built by George Crook in 1903 at the Royal Hotel in Main Street. It also stocked 'tobacconist supplies and fancy goods'.

The Royal Hotel and Lowood HallThe Royal Hotel and Lowood HallIn August 1904 Lowood's first major fire destroyed the billiards saloon, the Royal Hotel, Lowood Hall and Jensen's saddlery.

Jensen's had been vacant for some months and was believed to be where the fire originated. Crook was under-insured and did not re-build his saloon.


In 1911 a new billiards saloon was built in Main Street by James Lawlor. His barber shop-tobacconist was in front and the billiards saloon at the rear.

The walls and ceilings were extravagantly lined with pressed metal and it soon became a popular meeting place for farmers after they had unloaded their produce at the railway station.


It was here that Lowood's future national billiards and snooker champion, Albert 'Bert' Sakrzewski, learned to play. 

In Albert Sakzewski 1928Albert Sakzewski 19281921 the 16-year-old, whose family owned Sakrzewski's Store in Park Street, was waiting for a haircut when some older boys invited him to play billiards and took delight in beating him. 

However Bert had discovered what would become a life-long passion and soon he was beating all comers.After moving to Brisbane, Albert won eight snooker and six billiards Queensland amateur titles between 1928 to 1950. (He dropped the 'r' from his surname to make it easier to pronounce.)

He also won the Australian amateur billiards championship in 1932 and was runner-up three times. 

Albert became a chartered accountant, successful racehorse owner and breeder, founding Chairman of the Queensland TAB (for 19 years) and a generous philanthropist. He was knighted Sir Albert Sakzewski in 1973 "for his distinguished services to commerce, sport and charity, and his generous philanthropic activities'.  

 Jack Josefski's Billiard Saloon & Barber ShopJack Josefski's Billiard Saloon & Barber ShopIn 1930 John Walters acquired this building in unusual circumstances. Four years earlier the then owner, Ernie Brock, had dropped dead while playing cricket for Lowood.

The Queensland Times reported, "Mr Ernie Brock died with his bat in his hand on January 24, 1926 after making a run on the Lowood cricket pitch."  

John Walters bought the building from Brock's widow and, after extensive renovations, leased it to Jack Josefski (left). He continued to operate his business here until his death in January 1962.


Later businesses included the Lowood Music Centre. The building has been restored but has retained the decorative pressed metal panels on its walls and ceiling. It is now the popular Coffee at the Park café.