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Old Glasgow Pubs by john gorevan


No Beer threat to 500 Pubs.

In the NEWS 1977.

Beer supplies to 500 Tennent Caledonian pubs could be hit this week by a productivity row at a Glasgow brewery.

About 500 workers at Tennent Caledonian's Wellpark brewery walked out on unofficial strike today claiming that the management had gone back on their work on a self-financing productivity deal which has just been concluded.

The deal would be financed by non-replacement of workers who leave, a cutback in absenteeism, and a reduction in the number of damaged cans.

It was negotiated by a joint management General and Municipal Workers' Union steering committee. But the workers walked out today when they learned that the cash from the deal was not to be paid out immediately but in monthly installments starting on November 11.

They also claimed that management had gone back on the figure which the worker would get from the deal, £8.95.

As pickets turned back vehicles from the brewery a spokesman for the shop stewards said, "The figure agreed was £8.95 a week, to be paid immediately, but the management have gone back on this.


"The plant manager, who was away when negotiations were concluded, said that he would not have agreed to that figure. "But he should stick to the agreement made."

The spokesman said the workers were very angry.

"We have shut down Wellpark brewery and we now plan to visit all the other Tennent Caledonian depots and explain our case to the workers," he added.

"Supplies to pubs should dry up almost immediately."


In a circular today the company estimate the productivity deal would give workers £1 a week in one month, £2 in the second week, £3 a week in the third month, with a rise of just over £4 a week in the fourth and fifth months.

A Tennent Caledonian spokesman said later: "The company, together with the trade union concerned, has been exploring the possibility of further productivity and savings at Wellpark Brewery in Glasgow.

"There is evidence that there could be potential savings. "The shop stewards, however, want a guarantee that such sums of money will be made available to the operators as of now, before the savings are actually achieved."


In the NEWS 1979...

"Lager Off" Blow Hit Pubs...

Drinkers across the country are being left high and dry as stocks of Scotland's best selling lager run out.

Glasgow pubs are particularly hard hit, with some hostelries having to sell rival brands to keep their customers happy.

The pubs are being left with no beer because of a strike by drivers and draymen working for the giant Tennent Caledonian Brewery.

The dispute, which is dragging into its second week, has led to a serious shortage of Tennent's Lager.

Glasgow publican John Waterson, owner of the Burns Howff and Jean Armour hostelries, said: "we're in real trouble with Tennent's supplies. "Luckily we are free houses and we have other suppliers to fall back on. But we have had no Tennents since last Monday."

At the Halt Bar in Woodside, Andrew Ross had a similar tale to weo. "We are now starting to sell another well-known brand of lager," he said. "But Tennents do have about 40 per cent of the lager market, and I'm having to explain to drinkers of their brand just what is going on."

James Swan, managing director of Tennent's said today, "There is a dispute within TCB which should shortly affect beer supplies to the trade.

"Unfortunately picketing in this dispute has now extended to our Heriot Brewery in Edinburgh."

The strike has brought out around 300 men, members of the Transport and General Workers Union.

The stoppage is over the sacking of two transport men. The unofficial action started in the distribution department at Wellpark Brewery in Glasgow.

John McColl of the TGWU, said: "We're in a stalemate position. We've said the men will go back to work when the two who were sacked are reinstated.

"But the company will not give them their jobs back. "At the moment we have no plans for further talks."

Tennents have offered to go to arbitration and to involve ACAS to try to solve the dispute.


In the NEWS 1979...

No Beer Strike Hits Pub Staff...

The two-week strike by delivery men at Tennent Caledonian Breweries is already beginning to bite, on both sides of the bar.

Tennent pubs in the West of Scotland are closing earlier than usual, in some cases they won't open at all tomorrow and Monday, and afternoon drinking is being temporarily dropped.

The two-week strike began when driver Thomas Rafferty and drayman Hugh McColligan were sacked over alleged "irregularities" concerning partly-filled kegs.

Since then the company have offered reinstatement with the men under suspension, to allow a return to normal working. But the strikers are backing the delivery men, angry at being branded "cheats" and have called for unconditional reinstatement.


Meanwhile supplies are piling up at TCB's breweries at Wellpark, Glasgow and Hariot, Edinburgh. Both depots are being picketed by the strikers, who number about 250.

The Government's Advisory, Conciliation, and Arbitration Service were called into the talks on Thursday, but these broke down. And on top of the enforced pub closings, the future of 4000 part-time staff is also in doubt.

But the company are staying silent on their plans for those who could be affected.

A spokesman for the company said today there would be no fresh moves until Tuesday "at the earliest." He added: "Our managed houses have contingency plans in that they will shut an hour earlier at 10 p.m. and suspend Sunday opening and opening and opening between the hours of 2.30 and 5 p.m.

There is a very strong possibility that our pubs in the Glasgow area will be closed on Monday, too, this being the holiday weekend. "It's possible that part time staff will be laid off, but I do not think we will have to shut our pubs altogether at any stage.

"But it could all depend on how long the strike goes on."


In the NEWS 1979...

Beer Strike Ends As Prode Plan Is Set Up.

The beer strike which has dried up supplies to pubs is over.

The strike, entering its third week, had left many of Tennent's 356 managed pubs and hotels with no draught beer or lager.

And with today's return to work, the company forecast that it will take "at least two weeks" to get back to normal operations. The men went back to work after a breakthrough in management-union dealings at the Tennent Caledonian Brewery.

Strike action was taken by 256 transport workers at TCB after driver Thomas Rafferty and Drayman Hugh McColligan were sacked over "irregularities" in the return of part-filled kegs.

The two men are now suspended on full pay while an inquiry is made into the company's system on "partfull" returns. Transport union official John McColl said after today's meeting:

"I had talks with company officials on Tuesday and as a result of these the men have gone back to work and agreed in principle to an inquiry being set up.

"For the first time ever, union and management will get together and set up an inquiry into the system operated here. The two men involved have been suspended on pay pending the outcome of the inquiry."

But Mr McColl added, "The inquiry will not be binding on either side. We will be looking into delivery problems and on top of that trying to find a proper system where part-filled kegs are involved.

"The union will take part in drawing up any new system. "This is the first time anything like this has been established. Both the company and the union will appoint their own people to take part in the inquiry."


Tennents were obviously relieved to hear of the return to work, a decision reached by "a majority." The strike, which killed all deliveries to pubs and hotels, was costly for them, running to tens of thousands of barrels.

"We don't even know what statement issued after today's meeting Mr R. C. Ward, Tennent's personnel director, said, "Following meetings between the company and the trade union agreement was reached on the basis of a return to normal working.

A committee of inquiry, mutually acceptable to both parties will be set up to investigate the dismissals."


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