If you’ve ever been anywhere near Paddington after a big night out, you’ve probably stopped off at Indian Home Diner on Oxford Street and grabbed yourself a naan kebab filled with your choice of curry, cheese and potato. The Indian kebab shop is an icon, an institution, a late-night destination and an organisation in breach of its Development Application conditions.
Wandering along Oxford Street looking for a late-night feed, you don’t have many options. Indian Home Diner is like a port in a storm; it’s orange sign is a beacon to all-night revellers. As the clock nears 3 am Indian Home Diner is just the ticket. And that’s the whole problem. Turns out Indian Homer Diner hasn’t been allowed to trade as late as it has been this whole time.
A month ago, the Woolhara Council turned down Indian Home Diner’s bid to push its trading hours to 3am on Friday and Saturday nights. Despite this, the Diner has been staying open til 3am in breach of the DA conditions for years.
The request to stay open until 3 am was denied as the Diner staying open could have an “adverse impact upon the acoustic and visual privacy of neighbouring lands” and that it was “not in the public interest”. Which was clearly suggested by somebody who hasn’t desperately needed a Double Tikka Jumbo Cheese Kebab at 2:30 am.
The council has warned the Diner that if it continues to stay open late, it could be fined. In response to this, a petition has been set up, and a crowdfunding campaign kicked off to help Indian Home Diner make up the lost revenue for having to close its venue at the legal time. That’s how good the kebabs are; people are happy to pay for them even when they can’t eat them.
Here’s how you know that Indian Home Diner is a beloved institution because even some local pollies have jumped on board. Hoping to get some of that IHD goodwill to rub off, Liberal MP Dave Sharma has said “This is a tragedy. I will fight to restore IHD hours.” You have to enjoy the sentiment, but it’s probably best if sitting MPs don’t start throwing around the word ‘tragedy’ about kebab shops having to limit their opening hours. Save those words for the big things.
Indian Home Diner remains open at its ‘normal hours’, and you can still get all of the Garlic Cheese Kebabs your heart desires (or can cope with), but if you want one at 2:45 am you might need to go in early, buy one, take it home and leave it on the bench for when you get back later that night.