William Mudoch (Murdoch’s Pub)

David McKinnon writes, “Hi Paul, William Murdoch (Murdochs Pub) have you any ancestry info regarding this man? He was my wife’s grandfather. She stayed at 37 Hardie St. We think he had 4 sons John (also known as Jack), Alistair, David and Douglas (my wife’s father) and 2 daughters, Elma and Kitty. He may have been married twice.”

I was able to reply. Hi David, thanks for your message and apologies for taking so long to get round to this. Here is the limited info I have on William.

On Thursday 7th May 1925, a official liquor license was given for the Public House premises at 20 Stonefield Road (later known as the Priory Inn) for the first time to Mr. William Murdoch who previously only held a grocers license. It is likely then that the property became a public house in the true, modern sense of that meaning and was known then as Murdoch’s Pub from as early as the mid 20’s.

By 1925 the licensed spirit shop also doubled up as a grocers’ shop and was wholly owned by proprietor William Murdoch. He also owned a stable and shed at the rear of the building a reflection upon the reliance of horses for business at the time. To the south, and adjacent, he owned the semi-detached shop at 22 Stonefield Road, which he let out as a butchers shop to occupier John McWilliam for £15 per year. The rateable value of the spirit shop was £32 per annum.

William Murdoch lived at 37 Hardie Street and as such would not have had far to travel to work. He had a son named John. By 1930, the stable at the rear of the building was empty and unused as horses gave way to vehicles. Incredibly the McWilliams had been renting their butchers shop for close on 30 years by this time and in all that time, their rent was unchanged by each landlord.

Unfortunately, I’m only subscribed to databases up to 1935 and unable to pick up William Murdoch’s story after that time. If the full name of his wife can be provided, I should be able to pick up a little information and invite the family to contact me again in due course. Meantime, i’ll put the story up on the website here to see if anybody can provide more information or even photos!

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