188-190 Argyle Street, Glasgow. G2 8HA. Tel: 0141 229 5831.
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There has been a public house on this site since 1864.
Over the years this old pubs has been known as Thomas Cansh & Co; R. W. Cairns; Chrystal Bell & Co; The Grant Arms; Gamps and Dickens Bar; Mister Macawber and back to the Grant Arms.
In 1971 this popular bar was called Gamps.
In the News 1971…
I am always baffled by people who say there is “nowhere to go for a drink and a good meal” in Glasgow. It seems to me that I write about at least 20 a year.
Some of them I admit, have just been given a wash and brush up or extension, or extensions, but many are new, and all of them offer a pretty extensive range of surroundings, atmospheres, and cuisine to the Glasgow diner. This evening yet another rendezvous opens its doors to a discerning public, Gamp’s Chophouse in Argyle Street, just within the shadows of the Heilan’man’s Umbrella. It is a Clydesdale Commonwealth, Hotels Ltd, enterprise, and has been opened at a total cost of around £70,000.
Gamp’s formerly Grant’s Bar. 1971.
Clydesdale Commonwealth are taking their first steps into the bar/ restaurant business, having been extremely successful in the Hotel line. They have 18 hotels in Scotland and two in Bermuda. Among those in Glasgow are the Royal Stuart, the Ivanhoe and the Bath, and their others are in Edinburgh, Dundee, Falkirk, Grangemouth, Inverness, Loch Lomond, Oban, Gatehouse-of-fleet, North Berwick, Nairn and Argyll.
The new combination, Gamp’s, takes its name from a character in Dickens’s “Martin Chuzzlewit,” and there is a Dickensian flavour throughout. The Bars, a Dickens bar on the ground floor and the Parlour on the first floor, are similar in design and decor. The restaurant is on the top floor and seats about 50. Head chef is Edward McIntosh, who comes to Gamp’s from the company’s Nairn hotel. It is he who will have the delightful task of supervising the operation of two of the very latest pieces of kitchen equipment, micro convectors.
Speciality from the menu is a trifle lamb chop roasted with crushed pepper corns and served with onion sauce, chips, new or roast potatoes, and salad garnish. Price is 95p. Manager of the Gamp’s is John Whincup, who hails from Yorkshire, but who has been manager of the company’s Nairn hotel for some time.
In the News 1972…
In the NEWS 1978…
Mister Micawber’s, the Glasgow brewery-owned pub slammed at yesterday’s licensing board, today banned the public from its lounge bar.
The Argyle Street bar was one of only a handful of pubs refused an all-day licence by the board because it had fallen foul of the Public Health Act on 13 counts.
Health officials complained about faults in the toilets of both the public and lounge bar such as a door lying off its hinges, a leaking cistern, and broken tiles behind the urinals.
But any changes of the public judging for themselves the state of the lounge bar toilets at the Tennent Caledonian pub were thwarted today when management decided not to open the lounge.
Reason given for the sudden closure was “staff shortage.”
Meanwhile downstairs in the public bar cleaners were busy as the first customers of the day came in to ensure the place was spick and span.
However the effect was spoiled by gang names paint sprayed on the wall outside the gents’ toilet, tiles missing from behind the urinals, and toilet paper holders and towel holders missing.
Despite the 15 counts against Micawber’s, customers pointed out that the toilets were a lot cleaner than many pubs in the city and a least soap and toilet paper were available. Staff said today they had not yet heard from Tennent Caledonian why the pub had been refused an all-day licence.
Said Mr Aitken, the firm’s commercial manager, “The people who deal with the press and that kind of thing are on holiday.” The start of today’s licensing board meeting was delayed for nearly two hours because the board did not have sufficient members to form a quorum.
After a series of telephone calls to councillors, some of whom were on holiday, a sufficient member was found.
Board chairman Councillor Philip O’;Rourke said, “We deeply regret this delay but it is understandable because of the pressure the board is under. The board are hearing the latest batch of applications for afternoon extensions in city pubs and hotels.
Gamps is an old nickname for an umbrella.
Gamps was a character in Martin Chuzzlewit, who never went anywhere without her brolly.
Do you have any memories of this old Pub? If so please leave a comment.