Wednesday, 31 August 2011


There may be quite a few of you who didn't know about this little patch of Dundee - it's Baldovie Curling Pond.
It was situated near the junction of Baldovie Road and Drumgeith Road.
Not really cold enough for the sport when this picture was taken in the 60's however!
Photo from Gordon C.

Tuesday, 30 August 2011


Down at the scene where all the action was taking place on 18th August 1966, here's the crowd scattered all around the bridge area, waiting patiently for the grand opening.
The top image has quite a lot of folk gathered around the Dock Street bridge approach section, and you can make out the masses away in the distance over at the enclosure where the official ceremony was going on.
The middle picture catches the moment the Queen Mother's car drives up onto the the bridge, with plenty of flag waving as she passes.
The last snapshot shows the initial excitement over with some of the spectators choosing to depart, while most of the others hang on to watch the royal wheels return.
I can remember being driven across the bridge on this very day, only in the evening - along with thousands of others who decided to cross it on opening day!
Photos from Gordon C.

Monday, 29 August 2011


Here's a couple of photos from completely different vantage points, but both captured at around the same time.
The Royal entourage were in town for the opening of the Tay Road Bridge in August 1966 and stopped off at the Angus Hotel, inevitably drawing a large inquisitive crowd.
Although the photographer in the crowd was suffering from a touch of camera shake, you can see the 3 cars are in the same position as the image above it.
Quite a coincidence that these are the only photos I have of this moment, and the two of them appear to have been taken almost simultaneously!
In addition, I have film footage of the moment the Queen Mother departs the Angus Hotel and gets into a waiting car.
The "doorway crowd" footage is very wobbly, but you can make out what's happening.

Sunday, 28 August 2011


They brought out the Royal banners in order to tart up the city square, the day the celebrations for the official opening of the Tay Road Bridge were taking place - so these photos were taken on 18th August 1966.
The top image is from the city square looking over at the old Overgate. Quite rare to see photos of the original Overgate in colour. The construction of the 2nd version of the Overgate (the concrete one) was well underway in '66, but you can't see any of the building work that's taking place, in shot.
In case you're wondering, the ad on the side of the red van is for Fish Fingers.
The middle picture is a similar view, but from slightly further down the square.
A nice array of classic 60's cars on display, as well as a wee reminder of the VG van.
The bottom image shows more banners, this time from the other side of the square - and judging from the eye catching black car in the foreground, it looks like they invited Batman!
Click onto the photos to enlarge if you want to have a look around.
Photos from Gordon C.

Saturday, 27 August 2011


Stout Brothers garage & showroom was in the Marketgait in the 80's and the above items date from then.
The advert is from January 1988 and is basically letting it be known that the new Peugeot 405 won the "Car Of The Year" title.
The photos were taken in 1985 and remind us that Stouts were also Talbot dealers.

Friday, 26 August 2011


A glimpse along the High Street on 25th July 1985 caught this wee lad in the top picture carrying a couple of large balloons.
They don't appear to have cheered him up any mind you. Still girnie!
And a glimpse along Reform Street in the mid/late 80's caught these 2 characters carrying a heap load of balloons.
The balloons were used to advertise McEwans Ale who were sponsoring the Jazz Festival, the balloons being placed around all the venues where the gigs were taking place. So being snapped in Reform Street means they had just dropped a few balloons off at the Old Bank Bar. You can also see a jazz banner hanging above the duo in the middle image.
Colour photo by Neale Elder.
B&W photos by The Bear.

Thursday, 25 August 2011


Buses feature in all 3 of these city centre pictures from the 80's.
Starting with the top one of the High Street and the Dryburgh bus outside McColl's.
This was taken on 2nd June 1986, just as World Cup fever was kicking in. You can see on the news board on the pavement, The Scottish Daily Express had the headline "Mexico 86 - We're Shouting For Scotland!" As usual, Scotland never made it past the first round in a group containing Denmark, Uruguay and West Germany.
The bus heading for Fintry seems to be popular in the middle shot which was taken in Reform Street on 25th July 1985.
These blue local buses were Volvo-Ailsas.
Back to the High Street for the third image, snapped from the city square on 23rd April 1988.
The bus in the Jaffa Cake colours is a recycled London Routemaster operated by Strathtay Scottish.
The board in the square was reminding folk that there was an Antique Fair going on at the Caird Hall that day.
Now, all 3 buses themselves have become an antique fare!
Photos by Neale Elder.

Wednesday, 24 August 2011


Remember these?
Well many of you who went to school in the 60's probably do.
They were the buses that used to pick up the handicapped school kids.
The minibuses were grey and had "Corporation of Dundee Education Committee" on the side.
When we went to Balerno primary in the 60's, one of these buses used to pass us daily, down Banchory Road and along Balerno Street, picking up the kids who needed special treatment.
You couldn't help feel sorry for them mind you, while at the same time reminding yourself how lucky you were to have your full health.
Not that us able bodied kids had it all easy.
I remember the pupils who wore metallic callipers on their legs. Then there were some who had the big pink hearing aid. The majority of specs worn were the wire penny roonders, which often had one lens covered up with elastoplast due to their lazy eye. When we did P.E. that's when we discovered some kids had verrucas, ganglions and chilblains. Not forgetting those who had lice or the ones who breathed with snot bubbles popping out and in. There were also guys who would regularly faint, but only when at assembly. I also recall we had our fair share of pee-the-beds and keechy breeks.
Ah yes, it's all coming back now.
And just remember - we were the lucky ones!!

Tuesday, 23 August 2011


Not sure how well known these features are with those of us who are not from this part of town, so thought I'd put them up on show for anyone who hasn't seen them before.
They are a couple of arty details that are part of Rockwell school's gates.
I've no idea if they have been there since day one or if they were commissioned sometime later, but these photos were taken in 1982.
I thought I spotted the Wishart Arch etched into the sail of the ship, but on closer inspection, it doesn't really match.
The plane appears to be depicted as flying through searchlights, even if one has rusted away a bit.
All going well, perhaps an ex Rockwell pupil or teacher can supply more information about them.

Monday, 22 August 2011


My brother still has an unopened packet with one of these self assembly planes inside.
So although it's not the same Air Base brand as in the previous advert, the paper packaging idea is exactly the same, so thought I'd post it up just to help you conjure up the image of it a bit better.


These outdoor toys were the kind of thing you'd treat yourself to during the 7 weekies rather than add to your Christmas list.
The top Air Base ad is from 1969 and is for 2 styles of aircraft - a glider and a propeller based plane.
I can remember these. They were sold in newsagents as well as toy shops and came in long paper packets. You just assembled them yourself with the plane parts interlocking together. They worked really well too.
However, because they were made out of balsa wood, and what with boys being boys, they didn't have a very long life. The good thing was though, that once one was smashed, you'd just go buy another one because they were pretty cheap.
The Jetex ad is from 1966 and is for 2 different products - the Jet Car and the Hydroplane.
These were proper toys (not like the previous disposable type) with solid bodies and motors.
I didn't have these particular models but I have a hazy memory of other boys mucking about with fast modern vehicles, so they may very well have been these Jetex ones.
Perfect summer fun for primary aged kids.

Sunday, 21 August 2011


Other ways kids got stuff for free, or on the cheap, were as shown in the examples above where you could - join a club, try competitions or collect wrappers.
The top Arrow Bar ad is dated 1968 and offers kids the chance to join the Arrow Bargain Club. If you did you got a membership card, badge and a book of bargains. Any of the goodies you sent away for out of the bargain book were sold at discount prices. So for instance they had things like roller skates, cowboy outfits, cameras and so on, with the ad emphasising a transistor radio, which is probably what I would have opted for.
Arrow Bars themselves were bars of toffee in different flavours.
The Love Hearts ad is also from 1968 and they came up with a competition as a way to entice kids to get hold of a Kodak Instamatic camera or a trannie. Pretty easy competition really - all you needed to do was figure out what their jumbled up slogans said. After that it was just a matter of sending your answer in, along with a winning slogan of your own, then cross your fingers and hope for the best.
The last example is the Super Mousse ad from 1972.
They were giving away free Apollo Mission sticker badges. Each badge referred to a different flight number and so all that was required was for you to collect 2 wrappers that had the same number printed on them, send them off and await your badge in return.
To collect the entire set of badges, meant, of course, that you had to chomp your way through an awful lot of chocolate bars!
Click on the ads to enlarge if you want to read the small details.

Saturday, 20 August 2011


Youngsters do like to get their grubby mitts on free stuff.
Here's how us school kids got some of ours back in the 60's & 70's - as gifts in comics.
I'm sure you'll remember some of the ones shown above.
The Super Skimmer and the Wiz Whizz were the same thing, only different names, but they were plastic rotor blade wheels that used either lollipop sticks or elastic bands to get them spinning off into the air.
Toys that made noises were popular.
The Red Racketty was on a length of line and spun around over your head, the toy emitting a rasping buzzing noise in the process.
Thunder Bangs were great - just a swift downwards swipe to set off the loud bang.
I remember we made Thunder Bangs as part of crafts in Primary.
Then there was the Pop Gun of course, with its plastic plug to get the popping noise.
Balloons were also used for their sounds, coming in all shapes & sizes & names, fitted with plastic valves that made the balloons rasp when let fly around in the air.
As well as the Beezers Flying Fizzer above, the Beano also had the Flying Snorter and the Screamin' Demon.
There were whistles too - the Whoopee Whistle and the Happy Howler that made siren noises.
An annoying one was a toy called the Clicketty Clicker which was a hollow metal object with the image of Dennis The Menace on it, and when pressed in & out, made the clicking sound. Not a fave with parents!
The Whizzer & Chips was already 2 comics for the price of 1, but they also gave away free stuff, the one above being for a Flick Book.
Again, we used to do our own versions of flick books by drawing wee animations on the corners of our jotters.
Many of the gifts that were specifically for girls were adornment based items, while the boys were catered for in other comics with football related freebies.
So there's just a small selection of stuff we got for free when we were kids, generating lots of mucking about in the playground and at home.

Thursday, 18 August 2011



Can't remember this on Top Of The Pops - a tribute record to Oor Wullie.
DC Thomson trying to get into the singles charts with a song by The Buchans called "Wullie's Song", out on Wullie's own label too!
Available to buy at record shops or by post.
The mail order advert above was published in the local press in March 1989.
The b-side was a track called "The Rascal" and was performed by Saltcoats Harbour Band.
Wonder why they didn't get Dean & Dawn to record it?
Anyway, you'll all be dying to hear it no doubt - so then, check it out below.

Wednesday, 17 August 2011



A couple of items connected to Dean Eastwood, one of Retro's favourite entertainers!
First is a flyer under his real name, Norman Maiden, requesting you to vote SNP, who he was standing for in 1970.
He was still standing for SNP many years later, up until 1988 at least.
From the '80's is another flyer, this one for a kinkier sideline he was involved with - Hotlips Kiss-o-grams!
A variety of characters to choose from, although Dean took it a stage further by presenting himself as a Sing-o-gram, where he would show up dressed as a minstrel.
So it's X for a vote.
And X for a kiss.

Thanks to Stephen Small