Saturday 30 April 2011


I forgot all about this wee shop until I saw this photo - Dundee Philatelic Supplies at Sinderins, on the Perth Road / Hawkhill junction.
Can't say I was ever in it mind you, but passed it often enough.
The shop itself was being stamped out at the time of the photo which was taken on 23rd September 1982.
The corner seated area still remains today, but the wedge of shops that are boarded up, have all been demolished.
And is that a couple of Harris pupils plunking? Surely not!
The 3 white posters on the boards are for Hot Chocolate, who were playing at the Caird Hall in Sept '82, a review of which can be found in the Nov 2009 Retro Archive.
Leading us nicely into the start of another music theme in May.
It'll be mega. So stick around!
Photo by Neale Elder.

Friday 29 April 2011


Another corner shop that was on the go in the 70's was Liff Road Stores, a grocers on the corner of Stevenson Street and Liff road.
It's not just the shop that has closed down now, it's the entire chunk of this corner area that has completely disappeared.
In it's day though, as you can see on the door, it was a Green Shield Stamp shop.
When the locals popped in for a pint of milk, there may be a chance they ended up with the same brand as the one in the other photo - John Kerr of Balfield Dairy in Clepington Road.
Shop photo is from the early 70's.
Milk photo is from Bridie.


Bart and Lisa would have enjoyed this place - Simpson's Sweetie Shop on the corner of Graham Place and Princes Street.
The picture was taken in 1979, and although there is still a corner shop at this location, it isn't this one anymore.
On the subject of sweeties, anybody remember Ross's Chocolate Puff Candy? Same as a Crunchie but about the size of brick! Here's an ad for it from the 60's. It's black & white but my memory has it as being a red and yellow wrapper.

Thursday 28 April 2011


Let's find out what was going on at the Whitehall Theatre in April 1970...
First up was "The Lex McLean Show". Lex, you may recall, was a Scottish comedian/actor, full of Glasgow patter, who cropped up on the telly quite a lot around this period. Looks like he had a sizeable team with him for the Dundee performance.
Next was a musical called "Viennese Nights" featuring Marion Studholme.
A crime drama followed it, one entitled "Meet Mr Callaghan". This starred Neil McCallum who was in the TV series "Vendetta". Was he the brother of U.N.C.L.E. agent, David?
Final week had a local production running, "The Student Prince", an operetta presented by the NCR.
This ad appeared in the Courier on Saturday, 11th April 1970.

Wednesday 27 April 2011


Logie Secondary School was in Blackness Road, and in 1974, as it reached the end of it's life, it put on an exhibition called "Life And Times Of Logie School 1929 - 1974". It was basically a wee commemorative show looking back at the history of the school and area.
The top 2 items are the front cover and introductory page of the exhibition booklet.
Next is a ticket for a different event - the Logie Fair - which took place on 21st October 1972. The school even managed to get TV celeb, Jimmy Spankie, to open it.
Not sure who the showbiz contact in the Logie staff room was but around 1971 they got the Bay City Rollers to play in their school hall for an end of term do. This was way before their world domination days in tartan of course, and back then would have looked a little like as they are in the above photo, posing in their cosy cardie's!
Logie school eventually closed down in 1975, and along with it went it's nickname - The Penitentiary!
The headmaster in it's final years was Peter Murphy.
Many thanks to Yvonne.

Tuesday 26 April 2011


Peter Pye was the cartoon strip running along the bottom of the children's page the same day as the previous item.
Peter, it has to be said, was an Oor Wullie look-a-like, but dressed in medieval clobber and a chef's hat.
There was a good reason for the likeness, however, he was drawn by Wullie's creator, the one & only, Dudley D Watkins, who's now a bit of a legend in the world of cartooning.
Peter Pye's first appearance was in The Dandy way back in the 40's, but was a very short-lived cartoon strip and never cropped up in The Dandy again, so I'm guessing it's reappearance in the 1972 Tele would have been only it's 2nd showing since the original.
Dudley wouldn't have seen the re-run though, because he died in 1969 and is buried in Barnhill Cemetery.
Click on the strip to read the large version.
Photo by JG.


This'll take you back...
Children's Own Corner, in the Tele on a daily basis sharing the page with a short story, a crossword and a cartoon strip.
The thing about Aunt Joan's birthday greetings was you wanted to see your name in the paper when you were 8, but not when you were 13 - or beware the playground taunts! I bet loads of kids moaned to their parents for putting their name in when they reached that age. I mean, you were a teenager now, no a bairn!
Anyway, if you know someone who has a birthday on 14th January then you may be lucky enough to spot their name in this example above which was published on Friday, 14th January 1972.
So, I've managed to complete the Word Diamond and Riddle-Me-Ree ok, that just leaves me to put the Colouring Picture into Photoshop now and get the Fill Bucket out!
Click item to enlarge if you can't read it as it is.

Monday 25 April 2011


I wonder how many of you kept these wee books?
They were called The Handy Handbook and were given away free with the Evening Telegraph.
As well as the calendar inside, they also had bits & pieces of general information about Dundee such as local services, holiday dates, football fixtures and so on, with an occasional household hint thrown in.
Each one also had a view of the city on the back page, a variety of which are on display above.
The books in shot date from the 2nd half of the 50's, right through to 1969. I'm not too sure if this was the end of the line or if they kept it going in the 70's, but they do make for a very nice collection when grouped together.
Big thanks to Bridie.

Sunday 24 April 2011


They still do the Wee Red Book every year as far as I know, but here is one I kept from the 1973 season. It's stuffed with all things to do with Scottish football, but I reckon the reason most people buy one is because they have the forthcoming season's fixtures list.
Why I still have this one as a souvenir is because '73 was the year Dundee FC won the Scottish League Cup. It's fair to say though, I've had no need to keep any since!
The 2 Scottish football legends on the cover also have Dundee links.
Jimmy Johnstone, who was absolutely brilliant for Celtic, joined Dundee in the mid/late 70's. He was however past his peak by then and only played a couple of games for the Dee.
The other Johnstone is Derek, who was actually brought up in Dundee and went on to become a bit of a Rangers superstar. He supported Dundee United as a kid and even had a short stint at Tannadice in the mid 80's. Like wee Jinky though, his best years were behind him by then.

Saturday 23 April 2011


I take it this is the same Frank Gilfeather who is the ex boxing champ, journalist, TV host, futba pundit, playwright and author.
If so, this ad for his Dundee Trophy Centre shop up the Hulltoon is dated 1981.

Friday 22 April 2011


On a chilly Spring evening in the Ferry, sometime in the early 70's, my brother snapped this guy nonchalantly walking along the water's edge going away for a swim with his specs on!

Thursday 21 April 2011


Here's 3 great shots capturing some of the masses who ventured down to the city centre to cheer on the runners taking part in the 2nd Dundee Marathon on 29th April 1984.
The top image is the City Square which was used as a base-camp during the event. I don't know who the band is, but I'm sure someone will be able to fill in the details on that. What I can tell you though is that the yellow poster in the background is for Cannon & Ball who were appearing at the Caird Hall the following week.
Middle picture is a view along the Nethergate towards the finish line.
The bottom photo is of Don MacGregor, the ex Olympic athlete who won the Dundee Marathon for the 2nd year running! (couldn't resist that wee pun!)
If you want to have a nose around the crowds to see if you can spot someone you know, just give them a click to enlarge.
Photos by Neale Elder.

Wednesday 20 April 2011


Well I couldn't end the recent retro pub crawl without giving a wee shout to the delights of O.V.D. who are still on the go, with the ad on top dated 1974, just a year before I started boozing. Never touched the crude oil myself mind you, but my mum has been drinking O.V.D. for decades and continues to indulge to this day!
The middle ad is from 1981 and is for Scottish Brewers when they had premises in Smeaton Road.
Finally, another ad from 1981, this time for a place I know nothing about - Blackness Wines - who supplied wines locally. I don't think there was an actual brand called Blackness Wine though. Can't say I saw any vineyards up Westport anyway!
And so that's enough alcohol related items for now.
Time to sober up and get fit!

Tuesday 19 April 2011


Hawkhill Brewers in Mid Wynd was a very short-lived business that started up in 1983 by Bob Welch and partners.
Bob was a home-brew enthusiast who used to make Buddon Ale in his garage. So the next step was to get himself proper brewing premises and start filling barrels with his own recipe's.
Hawkhill Brewers main ale was Old Bally (you may recall The Scout changed it's name to Bally's in 1983). They also produced 2 others, a beer called Witch's Brew and another alcoholic treat called Rocket Ale, a drink that was aptly named, because it was so strong it sent you into orbit!
Unfortunately, Hawkhill Brewers couldn't compete with the big dominant companies, and the place closed down just after 2 years in biz, in 1985.
Photo by John Alexander.

Monday 18 April 2011


Many of you will recognise Jack Daniel's logo in this ad from 1984, as it used to be imprinted on the window of the pub and dotted around the interior.
A pub I used to visit, but mostly as a daytime drinking den rather than when in full flow at night.
You can catch a glimpse of the outside of the pub in a photo of Whitehall Crescent I have in the November 2008 archives.

Sunday 17 April 2011


Can't say I was a regular at Gennas in Gellatly Street, but I do remember popping along there from time to time on Thursday's, and reading again this 1984 advert above, now I realise why - it was half price night!
The place was on the same lines as Da Vinci's - bar downstairs, dancefloor upstairs.
Someone who chose to have their 21st at Gennas was Craig Methven. That's his original ticket from 1981.
Many of those who got a ticket were involved in the local music scene, so in attendance were the likes of Ricky Ross, one of the McGlone's, Mike Kane, Jock Ferguson, Drew Ramsay, various members of Street Level, Alien Culture, Megazones, The Grip, Scrotum Poles, The Hurricanes, and of course a few friends and family members.
Cranked Up fanzine gave the party a mention too, which is where the other items above are taken from. It reported that one of the local bands seen in the crowd was Gypsy Joe & The High Cheekers. Not being familiar with this act, I asked Craig who they were - and he doesn't know either! Celeb gatecrashers!!
Also in Cranked Up, it mentions a bit about gifts Craig received. My fave is the Popeye Bop Bag!
And what better way to end an evening of intermingling with the local alternative scene, than having the last record be "Atmosphere".
That would be the Joy Division one...not Russ Abbot's!
Big thanks to Craig.

Saturday 16 April 2011


Broughty Ferry wanted a piece of the action, live band action that is, and so Upstairs Downstairs cropped up on the scene to provide such a venue.
I have no images or ads of their place in Erskine Street, but I do have these 2 articles from a 1981 Cranked Up.
Top piece is a short review of Upstairs Downstairs, describing the sewing machine tables they had.
The one below it tells of the time The Grip played there, and in particular the moment the van carrying the band's gear crashed into the canopy above the main door!
Luckily the landlord wasn't there to witness it!!
You should be able to read it ok as it is, but if you're struggling, just click it to get the large version.

Friday 15 April 2011


I already have a photo on Retro of the outside of Brookes in the Ferry, that you can track down in the January 2009 archive.
I mentioned then that we used to gather in this pub on Sunday evenings for a couple of pints before nipping along to The Sands for the rest of the night.
This 1980 photo, however, is the other side of the pub to where we hung out. The bar in shot would be where you'd end up if you went through the door on the left. Us lot used the door on the right which lead to a roomier lounge, which you can just catch a glimpse of through the counter in the picture.
Photo by DC Thomson.

Thursday 14 April 2011


Top picture is Alison Burns, Derek Thomson and co tucking into their grub at Fat Sam's Diner around the late 80's.
The other picture is a general shot of Fatties Diner & Cocktail Bar area from the same era, with a bit of entertainment thrown in.
I don't know who the duo are, so if anyone can identify the act, or even spot someone they know in the crowd, feel free to pass it on.
Photos by The Bear.

Wednesday 13 April 2011


Another ad featuring a few more local pubs. This time all belonging to Bett Inns and dated 1987.
In my day, The Occidental used to be more popular with Douglas guys than with Ferry folk. It may not be like that now though.


You may be able to spot some of your old haunts in this Tennents Caledonian ad from 1979.
Most of the pubs named, I have no material on - no photo's, no ads - so won't be able to do an individual feature on them.
If you want to give any pubs on the list a mention, feel free to have a wee blether about them in the comments.
I thought the Golden Pheasant was a Chinese take-away!
Just goes to show you can't always rely on your own memory!

Tuesday 12 April 2011


This was the moment The Hawthorn's roots were wiped out forever.
Did they shout "TIMBER"?
With it went the other pub in shot on the corner of Victoria Road, the Top O' The Steps.
All gone!
Photos by The Bear.


This image at the fut o' the Hull was taken on 3rd July 1982.
On it, tucked away bottom right of the picture wearing the Sunderland strip is, The Hawthorn.
For some reason, this pub seemed to suffer an arboreal identity crisis, because during it's history at this spot - 5 Hilltown - it has been called The Rowan Tree, then it became The Maple Leaf, before it eventually settled for The Hawthorn.
The various transitions of the pub's family tree, however, came to an end just a few years you'll see in the next batch of photos!
Photo by Neale Elder.

Monday 11 April 2011


Before the Old Bank Bar opened in Reform Street in the 80's, there was another one in town who had been doing business a couple of decades earlier - the Old Bank Bar at 25-27 Murraygate - the original, and a place that goes back to at least the 1940's.
Although the pub's main door was on the Murraygate, there was another side door down the True Rest pendie which took you into another part of the pub - The Clan Lounge.
The Old Bank Bar was also well known for it's seafood dishes.
The picture dates from around the mid 60's, and the pub eventually closed down in 1968.
While I'm at it, I'd be as well to mention the shop next door in the image - at #29 Murraygate was Paul & Matthew, a stationers. The wee slogan they used in adverts and had on the shop front was - "The Pen People".
Photo by DC Thomson.

Sunday 10 April 2011


The ad is from 1984, and a reminder I also already have a photo of Chequers up which you can find in the September 2008 Archives.
So, we used to go to this place quite regularly in the early/mid 80's era, but I can recall one evening we didn't get in.
Sometime in the early 80's there was this do up at the Silver Cage or someplace like that - and it was a "Punk and Tarts" themed fancy dress night. We all got togged up, me with pink spiky hair, chains & safety pins, slashed t-shirt with slogans, the works, and off we went around all our regular pubs in the city centre first before heading up to the do. It was all a good laugh until we reached Chequers and the guy on the door (can't recall his name) said "You can't come in like that".
Thinking he was joking we said "It's us"
Him "You're not getting in"
Us "It's only fancy dress"
Him "I'm not letting you in dressed like that"
Us "We're here every week"
Him "Can't allow you in here"
So despite us being Chequers customers, we had the door slammed in our face!
We got a good laugh about it afterwards mind you when normal service was restored on our next visit!

Saturday 9 April 2011


The Nelson in Ann Street was a pub I knew of by name only - it wasn't one I've been in.
This picture of it, looking down Nelson Street, would have been taken around about the same time as the ad which is dated 1987, when Bobbie Glennie was the host with the most!
Nelson himself may have been victorious in his campaigns, but for The Nelson it was a losing battle. Along came the Dundee bulldozers and the little watering-hole on the corner sank without trace!
Photo by The Bear.

Friday 8 April 2011


There are 2 images of The Scout up on Retro already, but this one here is my favourite.
Taken in 1980, it shows what a weather beaten, run down, lived in, messed up gem of a drinking den it was.
Lifestyle designers would have charged a fortune in the 1990's to fake a distressed look as good as this!
The Scout was the real thing though, and delighted to say it was just as naturally shabby on the inside.
Hard to believe young boozers would queue up at weekends to get into a place that looked like this, but they did, with the queue often going around the corner into the Hackie. There they would be, waiting for a couple of people to leave the joint so's another couple could squeeze inside.
It was a pub where you could comfortably let yourself go, act daft, muck about, and nobody would give a hoot. In fact, the bar staff clearly encouraged craziness, and not only would they join in, they'd often be the ones to spark the madness off.
In the height of summer they'd keep the door wide open to try get some ventilation in the place but it never worked and everybody would be dripping in sweat!
George Thorogood would be blasting full volume out the PA, and they had their well known cartoon "Happiness is a life debauched" on the wall beside the bog!
Always a great laugh to be had there - you just had to keep going back for more!
You couldn't fake it..!!
Photo by DC Thomson.

Thursday 7 April 2011


I used to pass this place regularly in the 60's when I was a schoolboy, because it was on the #13 bus route, that being the bus I jumped on to visit my grandparents.
The Glen Lyon was located at 231 Clepington Road to be precise, and the ad is dated 1968.
By the time I reached drinking age in the mid 70's, it had changed to The Ambassador, so I never did get a wee keek inside it!
Now it's The Centenary Bar.

Wednesday 6 April 2011


Here's what happened one day when The Bothy frazzled their toasties!
The Bothy, up the Conshie, was also called The Bread, a shortened version of it's posher name, The Breadalbane Arms.
Some people also called it The Howff, and you can see The Howff's name in the pictures - the Howff being the restaurant part of the establishment.
The fire, which started in the kitchen, took place on 27 January 1987.
Although the blaze caused around £300,000 damage, it did reopen again way later. It was renamed The Bread and the exterior repainted bright yellow.
Tell you what, all this smoke is making me feel a bit parched.
Oh eh ken - time for another retro pub craw, starting tomorrowl!
Photos by The Bear.