Photo : Paul Green

I now have my football programmes in alphabetical order, where they’ll stay until Mrs RM decides to move them again.

Needs work

I seem to have kept a couple from most League clubs (I did the 92 grounds in the 80s and 90s) and held on to most of the pre-1970 issues plus Cup Finals, but the collection has been whittled down to about 500.

Programmes went from cheap (1/) and minimal in the 50s and 60s, to affordable (15p) and colourful in the 70s, to pointlessly glossy and overpriced (£2.50) by the ’90s, and are will be a distant memory if football ever returns.

I quite like this Bristol City effort from ’64, though it was disappointing that fellow GBG ticker extraordinaire and Robins fan Maltmeister wasn’t listed as a ball boy.

Take Courage
Actual 4d coin used to buy the programme

Both Bristol teams were mid-table Division 3 back then, but City’s 5-1 win that day was typical of a goal-filled season before VAR and substitutes ruined football.

Southend quite innocently rebranded as a sexual disease there

THREE adverts for Chinese food; was it invented here ?

Safest Chinese options so far

Talking of Peking, the Bristol Odeon had perhaps the strongest line-up at the pictures that Saturday night, but I bet the beer at ABC Bedminster was better.

55 days in Lockdown for me

Courage on the cover, but a single pub was being advertised, and the Mauretania sounds a cracker.

First Class

Never heard of it, so I consulted the oracle (after scouring Boak & Bailey, of course).  It’s definitely NOT the pub on the cover.

Classic 1997 edition

No sign of it there, presumably keg in ’97.

All I found was Paul Green‘s marvellous photo (top), which paints a rather different picture to the Google Maps street view.


One of you will fill in the gaps, I’m sure.

21 thoughts on “MAURETANIA

  1. The Courage advert was two years after they took over the large George’s brewery.
    The Mauretania isn’t in the local guide of 1984 so presumably keg then.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. This series has been far more interesting than I would have assumed as a novice football fan. Really fun to see the old programs. Other than ads, standings and the roster what information did they try to convey? Nowadays programs are almost a fan club type deal.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m enjoying reading these program(me)s for the first time in 30 years.

      Back in the 60s, you’d just get the manager making excuses for last week’s loss at Barnsley. By the 70s you’d get some photos, an interview with a player (“what car do you drive”) and directions to the away game at Derby. Into the 90s you’d get a load of fluff and a lot of retrospection (“We’ve met before”) and junior team. They haven’t changed a lot in 25 years, and fewer and fewer fans want them with all that information on the website.


  3. The Mauretania was so called because it had some of the original wood panelling from the liner Mauretania in the bar. Don’t remember it ever having cask. However there used to be a pub downstairs from it called the King Dick which did. It also had a Victorian poster for Wrexham Lager, although I don’t remember a Bass mirror.


    1. Bill,
      My 1984 local guide has the King Dick as selling Nailsea Jacobs Bitter and Wadworths 6X with the description “Dimly lit interior in ‘Brewers tudor’ style. Good value beers dispensed by gravity through fake cask ends from upper floor cellar. Soon to be renamed ‘Popes’ and range of beers may change.”


  4. Averys were a firm of Bristol wine merchants who were taken over by Eldridge Pope which itself was taken over by Marstons Plc. The Mauretania pub still retains its listed panelling from the liner and was latterly called Java,it is now under refurbishment. The King Dick bar became Vibes nightclub and now trades as OMG.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Super stuff. Surprised you didn’t make more of Reading’s fine home record, marred only by three desperately unlucky defeats. I don’t remember Chinese food appearing until a few years after that so maybe Bristol was an early adopter.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’ll find a Reading programme from 85-86….

      It’s surprising seeing ads for Chinese takeaways and restaurants, but I guess they were quite exotic in the 60s. The port cities would have been first with them, I guess.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Many a town got a Chinese restaurant in the 1960s, usually accompanied by a false local rumour of them using Alsatian meat, Shops started selling Vesta Chow Mein at a similar time.


      2. There’s a history of Chinese takeaways to be written sometime, you know.

        Cambridge had several going back to the 60s or earlier, one a grand affair and one my parents went to occasionally with net curtains and mystery and huge portions of duck.

        I’d love to know how good the takeaways were in the 60s, probably little better than those infamous Vesta packets.


      3. By the end of the 1960s Chinese takeaways around Nottingham were pretty much as we now know them, as I recall, certainly by the early 1970s.

        They often featured some things which you seldom see now, such as abalone, and – increasingly – water chestnuts.

        On the other hand, squid hadn’t really made it back then, to our detriment.

        Liked by 1 person

      4. I think YOU should write that book, Etu. Notts would make a good case study.

        You’re right that the premises and takeaways haven’t changed much in 50 years.

        We seemed to get squid and Thai dishes a decade ago, when giant squid started swimming up the Thames from Bangkok, presumably.


  6. Now “A safe, sexy and sophisticated night out!! Excellent service, friendly faces and fantastic cocktails at your fingertips!”, says its Facebook page. With those exclamation marks, must be good. Assuming you’ll be on your way imminently.

    Liked by 1 person

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