174 Westmuir Street, Parkhead, Glasgow. G31 5BS. Tel: 01415503154.
O’Kane’s photo taken August 2005.
Like many pubs in Glasgow when the name of the establishment changes, the locals will still call the pub by it’s old name, this is what happened to this pub. It was known for many years as O’Kane’s, when the name changed to The Two Bells, many of the locals still called it O’Kane’s and the name was changed back to it’s former title.
In the early part of the 1800s a small two storey cottage sat on Westmuir Street at the corner of Backcauseway, this old house became licensed to sell liquor and was known by the locals as the Auld Hoose. Over the years the licence changed hands until 1879 when David Anderson took over the thriving business. At this time there were three other pubs sitting on Westmuir Street and three licensed grocers. Read more on the Auld House. Click here.
For the next forty years David Anderson held the licence without complaint from the local authorities, his daughter Annie work close by learning all the tricks of the trade from her father.
In the early part of 1900 Westmuir Street was one of the main streets running to Shettleston and had to be widened to cope with the heavy traffic passing, however the Auld Hoose was standing in the way of development as it stood out further than all the other houses and shops in Westmuir Street. The pub had to be pulled down to make way for the widened street.
David Anderson was granted a new certificate and opened a public house across the road from the old premises in 1919. David was now in advanced years and had been confined to his bed for the last few years at his home in Early Brae, Springboig, he died a few months afterwards in April 1920 from Bronchitis. His daughter Annie, who had worked with him in the previous licensed premises applied for a transfer and was refused it. Mr Anderson left an estate valued at £6753, a vast amount of money in those days.
More on David Anderson’ Auld Hoose Click Here
A crowd stand outside O’Kane’s for the opening of the new refurbishment which took 3 months for the modernisation in 1974.
O’Kane is named after Thomas O’Kane. Thomas O’Kane sold his pub on London Road at the corner of Green Street called the Crystal Bar in the early 1950s having owned it prior to 2nd W W and bought the Westmuir Street pub. Initially it was just half the size it is now, there was a café next door, eastwards which he bought and converted it to a lounge bar. He sold it to Tennents about 1960 and bought an off-sales in Langlands Road Govan.
Mr Thomas O’Kane. Thanks to Catherine Kelly.
Over the past years many licence holders have come and gone to serve the locals of Parkhead, Tennent Caledonian Breweries took over the pub in 1960. The licence holder then was a gentleman called Joseph Smillie, he also ran the Dennistoun Bar, Duke Street and pubs in Morrison Street and Stockwell Street.
In 1991 the licensee was Janet Healy, today the pub is still going strong.
Interior view 1974. With David Aitken, divisional controller for T C B, wishing success to John Higgins, manager of O’Kane’s and his staff. Also in the photo is R Skelton, divisional manager extreme left and Mr T Heaney, entertainments manager of T C B extreme right.
The Two Bells. 1991.