Nostalgia: A look back at some of Cork city's most unique pubs 

Nostalgia: A look back at some of Cork city's most unique pubs 
Le Chateau Bar, Patrick Street. Pictured in 1975.

Much to the delight of many in Cork last month, pints were pulled across the city and county for the first time since March.

Pubs which are able to provide a 'substantial meal' costing at least €9 and accommodate social distancing were given the green light to reopen from Government on Monday, June 29. 

A Christmas delivery of whiskey to Clancy's Bar from Irish Distillers in this historic photograph from 1930.
A Christmas delivery of whiskey to Clancy's Bar from Irish Distillers in this historic photograph from 1930.

In the city centre, Clancy's, along with other food businesses on Prince's Street, has been given a new lease of life as people have been flocking to the area to enjoy Cork city's first eat-on-the-street experience.

The 15/16 Prince's Street/Marlboro Street premises has been trading as a bar since 1824, positioning it as one of Cork's oldest pubs. 

In an Echo article from November 1995, the pub was cited as one of the heavy hitters in Cork's pub scene, along with several others, most of which are still continuing to trade. 

"The popular Clancy’s pub in the centre of Cork has a turnover to match many of the big outfits in Dublin. 

"Other Cork pubs in the big league would include: Le Chateau on Patrick Street; The Old Oak on Oliver Plunkett Street; Briar Rose, Douglas; O’Flaherty’s, Parnell Place; The Cotton Ball, Mayfield and O’Driscoll’s, Douglas," the article stated. 

The inside of Le Chateau pictured after flooding in Cork in March, 1962. 
The inside of Le Chateau pictured after flooding in Cork in March, 1962. 

Le Chateau, established in 1793, is unique in that it is still the only pub in Cork to be situated on the main promenade on Patrick Street.

A landmark pub in Cork since the day it opened, a photograph in the archives showed that in 1962, flooding in the city wasn't enough to deter Cork revellers gasping for a pint of plain.

Meandering down to Paul Street, The Woodford, which also has access to Daunts Square, adopts its name from 'Woodford and Bourne' a company which sold wine, spirits and tea as far back as 1750.

In more recent history, the premises opened as a pub and formerly traded as Maguire's.

On December 17, 1988, Maguire’s made the front page of The Echo for an initiative they introduced to combat drink driving around Christmas time. 

"On St Stephen’s night and on New Year’s Eve Maguire's of Daunts Square will issue each of its customers with a £1 voucher towards the cost of a taxi fare home. 

Maguire's, now The Woodford, Paul Street. 
Maguire's, now The Woodford, Paul Street. 

"The bar’s manager, Charlie Mehegan said that on St Stephen’s night, Maguire's were holding a welcome home party for returned emigrants and on New Year’s Eve planned a champagne party. 

"He added: 'We expect to be particularly busy and have ordered 1,000 taxi vouchers. 

'It would be great if other pubs followed suit and the idea snow-balled. 

'It certainly would encourage people to take a taxi home rather than drink and drive.'"

Patrick Galvin outside the Hi-B. Picture: John Minihan.
Patrick Galvin outside the Hi-B. Picture: John Minihan.

On Oliver Plunkett Street, the Hi-B bar has carved out a special place in the hearts of many in Cork, owing to the quirky way the bar has operated for many years.

Brian O'Donnell, legendary Proprietor of the bar sadly passed away last December but was known for banning the use of mobile phones in the pub.

Two more of the city's oldest pubs include the former Gateway Bar on Barrack Street (now BarBarella) and Mutton Lane off Patrick Street.

Mutton Lane, off Patrick Street, pictured in 1975.
Mutton Lane, off Patrick Street, pictured in 1975.

The latter obtained its unique name as once sheep used to run into the English Market via the lane.

Reportedly, the pub once had the greatest sales of whiskey in Ireland per square foot as the custom was that butchers and cattlemen would leave a drop or two as payment for their junior staff on leaving the market at the end of a long day.

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