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Outward Travel was as follows:-
41 bus from George Sq (supposedly every 12 minutes but its First Bus so lets just say random)
The current view of George Square as GCC in their wisdom managed to get it sealed off in the middle of the summer.
( This was not a completely intentional route or planned walk it grew as the day continued. Clicking the bar names links to their own posts with additional information and bigger images. )
After a rather pleasant breakfast ( #NoNachos ) at the Caffe Euro ( £5 inc coffee ) i walked to the corner of Duke Street and Cumbernauld Road. I passed the Duke bar and thought to start there but last time i was in the area the outside of the Crown Creighton was being painted and i was interested to see inside.
I am interested in the layout and functional design of bars. The way that they grow in individual ways to serve their customers, fitting their floorplans in distinct ways but still retaining common required features
( Additional see Draw Duke Street.(website))
I was first person in the Crown Creighton and had managed to walk into the bar side. The beers in this walk are fairly standard so lets not worry about them.
Sitting back i tried to figure out how to get from the bar side to the lounge and could not see a reasonable way. I could see the lounge through the connecting corridor but looking at the doors to the left the only thing that struck me was the "No Golf Bags" sign.
Take a note of the legs on the rectangular bar tables we will be seeing them frequently today, and all over Glasgow.
Leaving the bar i walked past the smaller lounge entrance door so there may be no way to get directly from bar to lounge.
This bar has one of the best ceilings in Glasgow. Many places converted from other business uses ie banks have impressive ceilings but i do not think they count as they were not initially designed for function. I wish other bars had renovated their ceilings like this rather than putting up a drop ceiling or painting the ceiling color over the coving.
Here i got to see the common Glasgow way of smoking 3 cigarettes while drinking one pint. I think the liquid was evaporating faster.You can see the pint right in the middle.
First decently busy bar of the day, although it was later by this point. Fairly standard layout with that weird 3/4 wall as you come in that is in many bars. It may be left over from smaller snugs that were at the front of bars. Renfield Bar has still got this.
Compare this with the Castle Vaults which is in a similar building but across the other side of town.
The Avril Paton "Windows in the West" print makes an appearance here. See if you can spot it in the other bars. The bar crawl poster is all over the western part of town but since there are so few East End bars displayed it is not shown in this area so often.
Other art on the wall included a Hudson News plastic bag stapled between two pictures.
It was a bit dark when i walked in here and i wondered if it was being worked on. Turns out it is closing on Sunday and being turned into an Italian tapas bar. Current licensees are reopening a bar very close by so they see a future for the area. Duke St is definitely changing there are more West End like coffee shops and better use of the great buildings. It could be more like the Anderston/Finnieston section of Argyle St which has had a recent revival. It still needs to be tied into the City Centre by filling in the gap between Tennents and the start of the shops at Bellgrove St where the old meat market and abattoir were.
It all appears to be designated College lands so a long term plan may be in place. However considering Glasgow City Council seem to only have two men and a wheelbarrow doing the upgrade on George Square fixing this area may be way down the list.
There has been a license to sell wine,beer and spirits from this site since 1870.
I missed out the New Variety as i wanted to get to the next bar.
This is the bar across the road from the Tennents Wellpark Brewery. If you ever get the chance the brewery tour is impressive from just an engineering and output volume standpoint.
The Ladywell now stands on its own formerly being part of a tenement. When i was younger you used to see these standalone bars all over with a single girder sticking out the side as the last remnant of the larger structure.
First bar i saw people who were definitely tourists.
Wednesday afternoon karaoke from 4pm
The Ladywell,Mills bar and Crown Creighton have the books on a shelf for sharing that many Glasgow bars have, The system is usually take what you want, dont be greedy and return them or other books you want to. A "Community library" if you will.
Walking on we pass the site of the old Lamp Post bar which has been flattened and built as new flats. I like this rebuild as it is sympathetic to the lines of the building beside it. ( Apart, of course, from the big blob at this end where they either have too many or too few windows )
Old College Bar
Old College Bar was lively although that may have been Glasgows Wednesday Fun time of either Karaoke, poker or bingo. They were putting bowls of crisps out on the tables and i was a wee bit worried there was going to be a wake. I think the Ladywells karaoke had transferred from here.( Karaoke politics; intrigue etc )
Overheard best line of the day.
Girl , possibly a carer, to her partner , very loudly
"At least its not Airdrie. Airdrie is a shithole"
One of the three bars that claims to be Glasgows oldest ( Alternates; Scotia, Sloans) .It may have the best shout, old maps are a bit inconclusive. I think it works to get the visitors in . There was a table of tourists looking a bit bemused at the bar and the people. They left to go see the Cathedral just up High Street.
First really decent beer of the day although some earlier were nice enough. Camera had run out of charge so no more photos.They kindly recharged the phone while i was here.
Blackfriars gets treated like the Three Judges to me beer wise during the day.They have all the signs and handpumps etc but you usually over hear people ordering lager or something generic.
Finally walked back to Oswald St to get the bus. I usually think of Duke St being so far away but checking the map later i realised the Duke St to Oswald St is about the same length as another walk i do from Buchanan St Station to Partick Station.
These things are tough to write . Idea stolen from @AdamSh and walkingandcrawling.blogspot.co.uk
NB i take the time to remove people where i can from the pictures so they were busier i swear.
( Updated August 11th 2013 : Additional text )