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Old Glasgow Pubs by john gorevan


Victoria Bar.

967 Govan Road, Glasgow.


Victoria Bar

The Victoria Bar was formerly Halliday's Butcher shop and opened in 1938 by publican John William MacFarlane.

Mr MacFarlane was no new comer to the trade as he formerly held a licence for premises at 941 Govan Road, it was largely to meet the requirements of his customers that he decided to shift his business. In the old pub he had only a porter and ale licence, his customers were in need of spirits so he gave up the licence at the April Court and obtained a full licence for his new public house which opened on September 12th.

The bright frontage up to the window constructed of black tiled dado, and above were three windows with separating panels of blue tiles. A recessed panel held the letters for the sign, concealed lighting in the recess throw the lettering out in relief.

The swing door as you entered was of teak wood. The walls in the small vestibule were black tiles and the floor contained a trap door for lowering supplies from the street to the cellar.

The main bar had a silver grey brick front with a cream tiled kerb at the front with a red tiled roof canopy to give an outside look to the bar, the walls were panelled in walnut plywood with a recessed cream joint which gave a horizontal effect. The seats were finished with rexine upholstery in a green shade.

Mr MacFarlane was born and bred to the trade and carried on his own behalf since 1920. He carried on the family tradition, as he learned the trade in the Victoria Bar, Springburn Road, which his father was proprietor. His two brothers Walter and Alec were in partnership together having licensed premises in Bishopbriggs and Springburn. Walter held the licence for The Crow Tavern, 118 Kirkintilloch Road while Alec took over his fathers pub, a third brother Andrew was a representative for W H Chaplin & Co Scotland Ltd.

Victoria interior

Interior view of the Victoria Bar, Govan Road. 1938.

After working with his father for a number of years he joined the staff of Mrs Clark, Petershill Road, Springburn for several years. When the First World War came he joined up in 1915 with the Royal Scots Fusiliers and saw service in France, he was demobilized in 1919 and went back to his father pub, he then started on his own in Govan Road in 1920.

John became president of the Glasgow and District Licensed Trade Defence Association, 1950-1956, he joined the board of the Glasgow Association in 1940 as Convener and Representative of the Fairfield Ward, he was a delegate from 1945-1960 to the Managing Committee of the Scottish Licensed Trade Association and served two years as Senior Vice-President before succeeding Mr McKay in the chair. From 1955 to 1961 he served as a director of the Scottish Wine & Spirit Merchants Benevolent Institution.

Mr MacFarlane was a member of the Royalty Burns Club and a former Captain of the St. Mungo Golf Club also in his spare time he worked on behalf of the old folk of Fairfield and was well known locally, his interest in their welfare being practical and sincere.

Royalty Burns Club 1948

Royalty Burns Club 1948, included in this photograph are James Denholm, J W MacFarlane, William McCaskill, T B Noble, David Moffat, John L Sloan, Bailie J M Inglis, Andrew Pearson.

Mr MacFarlane's son James Crawford MacFarlane took over the licence for the Victoria Bar, Govan in 1964, he was married Mosspark Parish Church, March 28th 1950 to Miss Margaret Prentice Walker, daughter of Mr & Mrs Walker, Corkerhill Road, the reception was held at the Rhul, Sauchiehall Street.

Mr John W MacFarlane died in 1964 he was survived by one son and two daughters, the funeral was held at Craigton Crematorium.

James C MacFarlane Wedding

Left to right John W MacFarlane, Miss Walker, Mrs Walker and James C MacFarlane. The wedding of James and Margaret MacFarlane 1950.

John W MacFarlane2

Group of friends at the annul dinner dance of the licensed trade Association. 1958. left to right J Scott, sales manager of Bell's, Mrs Scott, Mr J Archibald, Glasgow manager of Fowler's, Miss H Robertson, Mrs MacFarlane, J W MacFarlane, Mrs and Mr R Allan.

Royalty Burns Club 1946

The Royalty Burns Club members. 1946. left to right J F Connell, A C Dickson, William Cosgrove, J W MacFarlane, T B Noble, A Preston, J Burns, William McCaskill.

J W MacFarlen group1

Various photographs of Mr MacFarlane over the years.

J W MacFarlane group3

John W MacFarlane group11

James C MacFarlane Bowlers

Glasgow Bowlers win trophies at the Victoria Bar Bowling Club at the presentation at Linthouse B.C. 1968. left to right back J C MacFarlane, D Lowley, H Bradford, J Rafferty, W Greig and J Thorne, front W McSkinning, D Wilson, C Ellis, R Rennie, J Ogilvie and J Granger.

Govan Ward 1950

Govan Ward 1950. Included in this photo are Richard Welsh, J W MacFarlane, John Miller, W J McDowall, William Coggans.


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