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Denim days changing the very fabric of Tatt's

Business

The exclusive Tattersall’s Club is considering another departure from tradition: allowing members to wear denim.

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The exclusive Tattersall’s Club is considering another departure from tradition: allowing members to wear denim.

Little more than a year after voting to accept individual memberships from women, for the first time since the club was established in 1865, Tattersall’s is looking to change the very fabric of the institution.

Outgoing president Stuart Fraser has been on the management committee for 16 years but held the top job for three of the club’s most challenging years. He said the not-for-profit organisation had to represent its community and change with the times – social and economic.

While some members opposed allowing women members, the contentious rule change helped reverse declining membership. Last year, Fraser said, 450 new members joined the club, including 290 women, with some men signing up their wives and daughters.

“For the first time in two decades we have had a significant increase in members,” Fraser told InQueensland.

“We already had a pretty broad community with over 5000 members. What we’ve seen is a broadening of that community and I think the ladies who have joined are a real asset.”

Members young and old, male and female, have also been consulted on what would make them use the club more. With workplaces less likely to tolerate boozy lunches, Tattersall’s has expanded all-day dining options, to give members the option of dropping in for something lighter. The dress code has also been tailored to match the decline in suit-and-tie business attire.

Fraser said Tattersall’s was also trialling a precinct in the club where members could wear certain types of denim clothing, with smart accessories.

“It is what we are calling dark denim, or dress denim; obviously no rips or anything like that,” Fraser said.

Fraser said he hoped Tattersall’s was on a more sustainable financial footing as a result of the changes, at least in the long-term, and noted the food and beverage trade had improved 75 per cent. However, with income still significantly dependant on the Queen Street arcade, Fraser said the club also had to endure a “very volatile market in commercial rental arcades”.

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