Johnny Andrew’s chip shop was located in McAlpine’s Buildings at 178 – 180 Glasgow Road. The shop first opened in the 1930’s and was a popular hit with residents in the nearby area.
McAlpine’s Buildings were 3 storey tenement type buildings located at the Glasgow Road junction with Alpine Street. The exact location of the chip shop, was exactly where the road entrance is now to John Street (remember John Street was realigned). Johnny Andrews married a woman named Cissie Allan and the Allan family lived upstairs in the tenement building, above the chip shop. A local girl named Mary Gibson worked in the chip shop. She lived across the road in Logan Street, so it must have been a very handy source of employment for her.
Peter Bolton told me, “A remember the shop from the 1950’s when I stayed wi’ ma grannie in Logan St. There used to be a one armed bandit ( puggy machine! Lol. ) that was threepence a go!! ( old money! )”
Around the mid 1950’s the shop went on fire, which is remembered by some people in Blantyre. It reopened, continuing its existence as a chip shop, and became known as Allan’s, suggesting the shop remained in the family in some way. Allan’s was a much reputed chip shop and is fondly remembered by many as providing excellent chips throughout the 1960’s and 1970’s. Of course McAlpines buildings suffered the same fate as almost all buildings in Glasgow Road in the late 1970’s when redevelopment and demolition occurred. I’ve marked up an 1898 map showing McAlpines buildings and indicating the position of the chip shop in relation to what is there today.
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