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Hollywood Hotel Icon and 50s Film Star Doris Goddard Has Passed Away

And tributes have been flowing from members of Sydney's nightlife, media and music communities. Here are some of them.
By Samantha Teague
July 30, 2019
By Samantha Teague
July 30, 2019

While the word icon gets thrown around a lot, Doris Goddard truly encompassed it. Publican of Surry Hills' Hollywood Hotel since 1977 — she ran the Belmore Park Hotel in Surry Hills, Balmain's West End and Newtown's Marlborough before that — Goddard was known for her no-nonsense attitude and late-night renditions for lucky patrons at the bar.

As well as being NSW's first female publican, Goddard was a successful cabaret performer and 50s film star, performing alongside Katharine Hepburn and Bob Hope in The Iron Petticoat and Alastair Sim and Bill Travers in Geordie. 

In her later years, Goddard fought to protect Sydney's nightlife and live music scene, attending rallies and, when she was unable to make it, encouraging others to do so.

On Monday night, July 29, Goddard's passing was announced via her Facebook page — where it's reported that she "continued to sing to the end". Tributes from members of Sydney's nightlife, music and media communities have flown steadily since the announcement.

Former Chief Critic and Managing Editor at Gourmet Traveller Pat Nourse posted an unpublished interview with Goddard and her "long-suffering" bar manager Mark Symons.

I am very saddened by the news that Doris Goddard, troubadour, Surry Hills identity, and publican extraordinaire, has...

Posted by Pat Nourse on Monday, 29 July 2019

City of Sydney Councillor Jess Miller said that "the night sky shines just a little less brightly tonight".

Sydney activist, MC and Former Director at the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras James Brechney remembered her "remarkable life".

Very sad news tonight to hear of the passing of Hollywood’s Doris Goddard. I only met her on a handful of occasions, my...

Posted by James Breko on Monday, 29 July 2019

Motion, Sydney disco night organiser, posted a photo of Goddard on the decks alongside its tribute.

It is with great sadness that we report that Doris Goddard, the legendary owner of the Hollywood Hotel, has passed away....

Posted by Motion on Monday, 29 July 2019

Sydney journalist and author Richard Cooke acknowledged her contribution to the local hospitality scene.

And prompted fellow journo Steve Dow to remember when she "sipped a red, strummed flamenco on her guitar".

Local band Dusty Ravens recounted their time working with Goddard and linked to their song about the Hollywood Hotel.

We'll keep updating this post as tributes continue to flow in.

Top image: Hotel Hollywood by El Scrapeo via Flickr.

Published on July 30, 2019 by Samantha Teague
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