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Old Glasgow Pubs by john gorevan


Philip Bradshaw. (Kelly's Bar)

48 South Albion Street, Glasgow. (100 Albion Street/ 33 Blackfriars Street)


In the early 1850s Philip Bradshaw founded Bradshaw's Bar at 48 South Albion Street which later became 100 Albion Street. The old pub sat at the corner of Stirling Street which later became known as Blackfriars Street. The old howff had a wide reputation for it's whiskies and wine, he blended all his own whisky on the premises, it was said that they were palatable as any other blend that can be procured in the city. Mr Philip Bradshaw went into semi-retirement in the 1890s and his son also Philip managed the pub. Young Mr Bradshaw was familiar with every detail of the trade, he was popular by the locals. Affable, and of a kindly disposition, qualifications requisite for those who will cater successfully for the public. Perhaps he refused more people whom he suspects to be under the influence of liquor than any other manager in the city.

If there was the slightest indication of intoxication there is at once a direct refusal. This is a point that other members of the trade should have practiced. Mr Philip Bradshaw jun., was for a number of years a Freemason and was a member of the Shamrock and Thistle Lodge 275 and also a member of the Cathedral Chapter 67.

Adjoining the pub in South Albion Street were the premises of Philip Bradshaw & Son, Cork Manufacturer. It was one of the oldest establishments of it's kind in the city. A considerable trade was done among brewers, bottlers, aerated water manufacturers and hotel keepers.

The business was sold in 1906 to wine and spirit merchant Robert Baxter, who served the locals until after the First World War, at this time the address was 100 Albion Street. Mr Baxter was very successful in the pub, he was followed by Robert Brown who owned the pub during the 1930s.

John A Kelly owned the pub during the 1950s-60s, his son John O Kelly acquired the pub in 1963 and continued in the pub until around 1980.

Mr and Mrs John Kelly

Mr & Mrs John O Kelly and Mr & Mrs King. 1972.


In the NEWS 1977...

John Kelly of Kelly's Bar Albion Street 1977

John Kelly outside his premises. 1977.

A "Reel" record for Kelly's...

Kelly's Bar in Albion Street, Glasgow, certainly isn't one of the biggest in the city, but it is unique in that it has had a reel named after it.

It was written by James Moir, conductor of the Glasgow Caledonian Strathspey and Reel Society.

After he had written it he was searching for a name. Members of the Society frequented Kelly's after they finish practising in the City Hall in Albion Street. As he was sitting in the bar sipping a drink he got the inspiration. Why not "Kelly's Bar."

He had a word with the owner John Kelly. Had he any objections to the name"?

Said John, "Naturally I was delighted and a little flattered. I hope everyone who hears it will come in and have a drink," he added hastily- "Not on the house of course."

"Kelly's Bar" is included in the Society's newest long-playing record. The thought occurs to me that "Kelly's Reel" might have been a more appropriate title.


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