57 Main Street, Thornliebank, Glasgow. G46 7SH. Closed Down.
The Arden, 1991.
This pub is reputed to be one of the oldest in the district, having been established around the 1850s. A new lounge bar was built in 1954 for Mr John I Lawson, formerly occupied by dwelling houses adjoining Mr Lawson’s original premises on the main thoroughfare. A corridor used only by staff connects the new lounge with the old bar. The interior decor of the new lounge was furnished with small tables of light oak with chairs to match, the wall seating around the room was covered in red leather. The floor was covered in a patterned Korkoid while the walls were panelled halfway up in hard board with plaster board above. The doorway screens were of walnut veneer. A small fireplace was fitted in one wall opposite the entrance. A triple mirror backed the gantry while the bar counter and front was of formica.
Left to right Mr Hugh Campbell manager, Mr James Finlay managing director of Aitken’s and John Lawson, 1954.
Interior view of the new lounge, 1954.
In the NEWS 1979…
Comfort and Courtesy, That’s the aim at the New Arden…
Many years ago Thornliebank was a hamlet with a thirst. So a pub was built, and business was good. Decades later the rapacious demands of the developers became so great that the village grew and grew, like Pinocchio’s nose, and increased out of all recognition.
Not only did the village multiply, but so did its surrounding policies of Carnwadric and Arden. And with it grew the thirst of the inhabitants.
The growth was not lost on the suppliers, those wise men from the east who trade under the name Scottish and Newcastle Breweries. Tow years ago the realised that their little oasis was too small to slake the thirst of the populace in the comfort and style of which their name has become a byword.
They did something about it and now the “Oasis,” called the Arden Bar, has been remodernised, refurbished, and has doubled in size.
It is certainly good news for locals because the new premises are airy, spacious, comfortable to the point of luxury, and the lounge alone can seat 170 people.
Tommy Farquharson, who has been manager at the Arden for the past eight years, is obviously delighted with the new concept. “It gives people more room to breath, and of course to drink, and the initial reaction is splendid. People seem to like the new decor and it’s getting so busy that we might have to double the size again.”
The increased size of the new lounge has made it possible to put on entertainment and that is what they do four nights a week. Says Tommy: “We are featuring middle of the road entertainment, duos, trios, groups, comedians. I had thought of putting in a resident group but thought our customers might get tired of them.
So at present we are experimenting, by putting on different shows on each of the four nights. That way we can gauge what our customers like best, and ask them back again. It just wasn’t practical to put on entertainment before because we just couldn’t make it pay. Now we can, and it seems to be going down very well.”
At present the Arden doesn’t have an all-day drinking licence, but they hope that that will be rectified at the October sitting of the Licensing Court.
If it is granted, Tommy intends putting on lunchtime snacks. Until now, he says, “We just haven’t had the space to do it. It won’t be anything too lavish but good food at a reasonable price.”
Apart from “ra bevy” probably the most important thing about any pub is its staff, and that is where the Arden really scores. Most of Tommy’s staff have been with him for many years and the accent is on courtesy and good service.
The Arden Bar fell into bad management with gang members frequenting the bar, the pub was finally closed down around 2013. Only the local people would frequent this bar as it ended it’s life in a very bad way the previous owners would never have let this happen.
The new Arden Lounge was opened by James H Finlay, managing director of Aitken’s Brewery.
Proprietor Mr John I Lawson also had the Regent Bar, Pollokshaws Road which he took over from his father, four years later he bought the Arden Bar.
Mr John Lawson had been in the licensed trade since 1917, he was a chairman of the Local Veto Committee.
Manager Hugh Campbell had 40 years experience of the licensed trade in Ayrshire, Renfrewshire and Glasgow. He was formerly manager of the famous Queen Anne in Argyle Street which was destroyed by fire the same fire that destroyed Arnott Simpsons.