An Australian pub has come under fire for its decision to hold a wet T-shirt contest on the public holiday dedicated to the memory of Queen Elizabeth II.
The Roebuck Bay Hotel, the oldest pub in the West Australian pearling town of Broome, made the announcement this week it would hold a wet T-shirt contest “to celebrate the life of Queen Lizzie.”
“Join us Wednesday night for a special Wet T in Oasis Bar to celebrate the life of Queen Lizzy,” a Facebook post about the event read.
“Enter the Wet-T for your chance to win $750. With DJ Sam T on the decks from 8pm party with late into the night!”
Several people took to social media air their concerns the wet T-shirt party was distasteful in the wake of the monarch’s death.
“That’s a bit of bad taste,” one user commented, while others agreed.
The wet T-shirt contest is a popular Thursday fixture the “Roey”, as it’s affectionately known to locals, but it was reported in local media the pub insisted it had “good intentions” behind the celebrations.
A wet T-shirt contest is typically where women are splashed with water in light-coloured T-shirts without garments underneath.
Thursday’s public holiday continues to be a source of concern in large parts of the nation.
Earlier this week, it was revealed government Centrelink payments could be impacted by Thursday’s public holiday, when all of Centrelink offices’ will be closed.
Services Australia has since said some people may be paid early as a result of the public holiday.
The retail and health sectors have also expressed concerns over the public holiday date, with Australian Retailers Association chief executive Paul Zahra saying trade, rostering and cashflows for smaller businesses would likely be impacted.
“This event will create some complications for businesses with store closures and staff scheduling challenges, with many rosters set up weeks in advance,” Mr Zahra said.
“There will also be a small but unexpected loss of trade, and additional staffing costs, which may impact cashflows for small businesses,” he said.
Australian Medical Association Steve Robson was less diplomatic – blasting the decision as one that would increase pressure on an already strained hospital system.
“Operations and lots of patient consultations booked that day at a time when access is difficult. Thanks for dropping this at short notice,” Mr Robson said this week.