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Old Glasgow Pubs by john gorevan


The Snaffle Bit. (Mars Bar)

21 Howard Street, Glasgow.

Over the years this old pub has been known as The Snaffle Bit, in 1961 it became known as the Steering Wheel, then The Howard Bar, The Oyster Bar, The Mars Bar, then the Countdown. Now Demolished.

Mars Bar advert 1978

Mars Bar advert 1978.

Mars Bar advert 1978

Mars Bar advert 1978.


After Mars threatened to take the pub to court for copying the name of one of the companies most famous chocolate snacks MARS BARS the pub had to change the name.


In the NEWS 1979...

Pub Thief "Saved" By His Boss...

Melvin Mitchell has a chance of staying out of jail because he had a boss in a million. Today a court heard how gambling-mad Mitchell, a 27-year-old pub manager, found himself £5000 in debt and in trouble with loan sharks.

In desperation he helped himself to £3641 takings he should have put in the bank night safe, then he vanished.

But Glasgow Sheriff Court heard how Mitchell's boss, James Byrne, had given him the chance of a lifetime to make good. When Mitchell was caught and then freed on bail, Mr Byrne gave him a job in the bar of a hotel in which he also has an interest.

Instead of demanding his cash back he allowed Mitchell to pay off all his other debts. Mr James Friel, defending, said Mr Byrne was now putting Mitchell back into the same pub from which he embezzled the money, starting on Monday.

He will pay Mitchell £70 a week, but will keep £20 until the stolen money is repaid. Mitchell admitted embezzling the money from the Mars Public House, now the Countdown, in Howard Street in the centre of Glasgow.


Sheriff Peter McNeill, who was told Mitchell was a first offender, deferred sentence for three weeks for a back-ground report and continued bail.

Mr Brian Logan, prosecuting, said Mitchell had been working at the Mars Bar for about five months before the offence which happened between October 22 and November 4 last year.

Mr Friel said in normal circumstances Mitchell should go to jail, but asked the Sheriff to give him a chance of freedom in view of Mr Byrne's attitude.

Count Down advert 21 Howard Street Glasgow 1979

Advert from 1979.

Update 09/01/2014...

In the 1960s the Snaffle Bit changed its name to the Steering Wheel according to an email I got from Jimmy.

Do you remember the pub as this name if so please get in touch.


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