Could there be a more welcome sight than the Vandenberg Hotel absolutely abuzz with activity?
Tradies are coming and going at the historic hotel, which was sold by its long-time local owners late last year and then closed shortly after Christmas.
It's now in the hands of local business owners Kev and Colleen Gunn with Terry Green and his wife Kathy - formerly of Forbes and now in Dubbo.
Also heavily involved is Mick Brown, who brought the two parties together when he heard both were interested in the business earlier this year.
"I was looking at it but couldn't get a business partner," said Mr Gunn, who has another accommodation business and felt he could take on the accommodation portion of the venture.
"Mick Brown is mates with Terry (Green), he knew he was also looking at it, so he's connected the two of us.
"Without that this place wouldn't be going."
It's good news for all, as evidenced by the beeping horns and cheery greetings from passing drivers since work began.
Terry Green, who's in the process of selling his Dubbo car dealership, is also excited for the project back in his home town.
"It's going to be good for the town," he said.
"I love the industry, I love hospitality. This is going to be a good, family hotel."
The partnership took ownership of the hotel a mere three weeks ago, and the transformation towards their vision is well under way.
They're painting, putting in new floor coverings, redoing the beer garden and restaurant and even - in exciting news - looking at their options for the upstairs verandah.
This is all with huge thanks to local tradies who have made themselves available for the work - and their customers.
"Tradespeople have gone out of their way to help us, to make this a priority," Mr Gunn said.
Mr Gunn added his thanks to the previous owners, both Grant Clifton and Leon from the Colosimo Group, for their support and their assistance with contacts, suppliers, licences and more.
Mr Green added that Forbes Shire Council has also been very supportive.
The Van, he understands, is some 160 years old and it sits in Forbes' amazing heritage precinct.
Its significance isn't lost on the new owners and we're encouraged to 'watch this space' for how they'll tell its story.
"We've lost so many local buildings and we don't want to lose one more," Mr Gunn said.
"This precinct is something no other town has.
"We just want to embrace it."
The partnership hope to re-open The Van at the start of August, we look forward to hearing more from them.
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