Blannies and Keens

Hello Parkheed,
I Was born and brought up in the 1950/60’s at 131 Westmuir Street, in the Tenement that was next door tae Parkhead School. Looking out of our first floor bedroom winday I could see and smell the best bakers and butchers in the whole of Glesca, Blannies and Keens.
Used tae hang out down Nisbet Street at the corner with Salamanca Street outside Annies shop, across from the Fyfe & Douglas coffin works.
The spare grun was just across from the wee shop where we used tae play 200 a side fitba from dawn tae dusk when the score would be something like 152 tae 151.
Just down the road was one of the main gates of the forge where ma da and granda used tae work. At 4.45 when the horn blew the streets would suddenly be flooded wae men all wearing dirty bunnets and overalls as they made there way out from the factory. Some with a bob or two tae spare would hang about outside Wards, otherwise known as the daft shop, until they opened their doors at five o’ clock or walked the short distance up tae the Charlie, whit a choice.
When I got older we joined up with the other guys our age from further along the Street tae hang about at the corner where Salamanca Street joined Duke Street opposite the Palace Bar pub, we were know as the Sally.
For those who like a bit of history Salamanca Street was named after the victory at Salamanca in Spain by the British forces over the French in 1812 where Wellington defeated Napoleons army. We used tae discuss and debate the details of the battle and it’s historic significance a lot while we stood up the closes in the cold and damp nights until we were old enough tae drink and play darts in the dry and warm pub.
(Its well worth a visit, I mean the battle scene at the wan in Spain, not the wan in Parkheed as most of the Street has gone now.)
The sights, sounds and smells of the factories, the shops and the general bustle of a vibrant Parkeed are also long gone but thanks tae sites like this we can still share our wee bits of memories.

Ian Stevenson