Guys n Dolls

The large shop was Guys and Dolls and the 'blokey shop' was I believe The Westerner, selling ... yes you guessed it cowboy boots, shirts, jeans, etc.

Mo Wright

With regards to Guys and Dolls, I worked there in 1971'ish and later - 1972-1975'ish at the Westerner in Barton Arcade, Manchester - would be nice to hear from any other staff/friends from that era - Barry Shaw, Martin Carling, Dave and Mike (from the Westerner) to name a few. I may have some pictures of The Westerner which I will try and post. Also Roy James Dean who woarked at, I believe, Pygmalia in about 1972 - he also played guitar but can't remember bands name Regards

Phil Nadin

Didn't they have a live DJ on in there on Saturday afternoons?

Salford Lad

I worked at G+Ds around 1971. I had an absolute ball and I rubbed shoulders with some of the most beautiful people in the world.

I remember Ged Sundquist (who went on to be a fine actor), Janet Fearns, Ian (The Westerner)  "Bridie" The Manager and yes the great Al Dean ? who entertained us every Saturday.     

Noel Ahern

So, there I am, sitting with Mike Bradbury (who I'd not seen for over thirty years) and we're talking about the old days at Guys and Dolls. I worked there and at The Westerner from 1970-74 and Mike from 1968-73. Mike asked if I ever saw anyone from those days, mentioning a few who'd been to visit him when he first moved to Wales, including Phil Nadin. Of course I've seen nobody in years. And then, for some reason, I decide to Google Guys and Dolls, and here I am, in Manchester beat and Phil Nadin is remembering me!

So here we go, here's a roll call of those whose names I remember. There are others whose faces I can still see, but can't remember their names. Maybe someone else can fill in a few blanks:

The Manchester boss was Alan Gallagher, supported by Tony Moores, who was married to Anne, the window dresser. And then, in no particular order, other than the people I worked with first; Mike Bradbury, Dave Wild, Ian Farrell, Ian Marriott, Ian Stewart,Susan Drazcuk, Christine Perritt(?), Janet Fearn,Barry Shaw,Phil Nadin, Noel Ahern,Kenny Cummings, Brian King,Mike Comber, Greg Vere, Gerry Sunqist, Bernadette (), Pat, Nick and Paul Cunningham, Alec Green, Al Zabiella, Keith Benson, Ian Balf, Bill Bacon, David Rhodes and Ian Muir. Good crowd - what are you doing now?

I could spend hours telling stories from those days and when I get time I will, but for now, here's a piece of totally useless information I'll share with you. Al Dean (real name Alan Pogson) did indeed DJ at Guys and Dolls on a Saturday - assisted at lunchtime by Andy Peebles! His final disc every Saturday was a special request for David Rhodes. The track was "Sanctus", the music running all the way through the film "If". Not a lot of people know that.

Martin Carling

So there are survivors!  I remember many of the names listed by Martin Carling and Phil Nadin, (including themselves), and like Martin there are many more faces to which I cannot put names.

After Royce Menswear on Deansgate I worked at the Westerner in Guys and Dolls, also on the third floor (going up!) - ground floor accessories and Westerner, first floor Dolls, second floor Guy (or was it the other way round?), third floor sale and cafes, fourth floor admin and display, and I also worked at Barton Square around 1974 I remember the girls shop next door although I wouldn''t have remembered the name, Contrary, but for Christine's post below.

I can add some names to Martin's list: Gavin Aldred (who I think left to work for Littlewoods?), Danny O'Connell (still very much alive and kicking!), and Phil Sergeant (last heard of setting off to walk to India); Bluey from Liverpool (who once downed a pint of Scotch in one and promptly passed out!).  I remember happy nights (and days) in the Hole in the Wall was there a barmaid called Monica?, The Mariners and The Sawyers Arms.

Does anyone remember the mass tin lid battles in which we would frisbee the tops of promotional tin cans at one another across a crowded shop?  Or the boarded up corridor we found on the third floor and, carefully concealed with shirt boxes, an ideal place to get over a little lunchtime excess, it even had toilets!

I remember dear old Alan Dean on Saturday afternoons and the first day of the sale when, in an attempt to limit the number of people in the store at once we roped the front doors shut, opening them by a few inches to hand out ˜first come/first choice" tickets (well, it sounded like a good idea at the time!).  We slacked off the rope and opened the door slightly whilst one of the staff, I don't remember who, extended his hand through the doors bearing a ticket.  The mob on Oldham Street spotted our mistake in a flash, the person holding out the ticket had all the others in his other hand  - whoops!  I wouldn't have said he would have fit through that gap but  he did, like a cork out of a bottle!  Then it was run like hell for the basement and side door to mount a rescue mission!  We got most of him back but all the tickets had gone and the Police were becoming increasingly concerned about the size and demeanour of the crowd so we had to abandon the plan and it turned into a free for all - that was a fun day.

The last time I saw any of the old crowd apart from Dan must have been better than thirty years ago when I would play pool with Tony Moores in the Spread Eagle next door to Robinsons Brewery.  I also went up to visit Phil Nadin (how' s it going Phil?) in County Durham where he had just moved from Stockport.  I remember on that trip someone trying to steal my car, a MK1 Capri, which I suppose pretty much dates this little memoir!

Ric Ford

My Mum Kitty Lomon used to work in Guys and Dolls on Oldham Street. I used to go with her on Saturdays (no idea why a store would allow you to take your child in for the day) and it was the most amazing place. Mary quant Makeup, and George Best had a concession in there. I remember seeing him there. His shirts were soo fasionable then, purple with big round white penny collars!!!

I also remember my mum buying me an Afghan Hound coat from there because she got a discount. I really was the coolest kid around, if the the smelliest, I have never known anything like that smell ... I'm surprised anyone came near me!!

Mandy Lomon

Many thanks for all the posts regarding Guys and Dolls and the Westerner and Pygmalia (early 70's manager Roy James Dean) in Manchester, any of the lads and lasses who want to share memories of the time please contact me Phil at - I will be trying to post some images of the shop to Paul@manchester beat - Remember the Hole in the wall? good drinker at the time - Mike Bradbury will remember ! Especially how he used to get free drinks LOL.

Phil Nadin

Reading through the comments about Guys and Dolls really put a smile on my face.

I worked there, I think in 1976, at the Sterling Cooper concession.  I wish time had been a little kinder on the old grey matter because I just can't remember any names...apart from Elaine Jennings, oh and I think Sarah the window dresser who was dating one of the Stockport FC players at the time.

I was only 15/16 but felt oh so grown up...and yes we used to go in The Hole In The Wall regularly.

We used to hang out with the guys from the hairdressers on the second floor,anybody remember Dougie,I wonder if he is still cutting hair? We regularly went to The Great American there was a place...Tony Wilson could regularly be seen there!!  Then it was on to "Slacks"...OMG I cant believe I was doing these things at this age!!! Oh...My name..Denise!!


Nice to welcome Denise to the forum with her comments on Guys and Dolls - especially with reference to the Hole in the Wall and the Great American Disaster ! If you ever frequented such places on Saturday night and say several unrully lads and lasses (mostly from G & D and The Westerner) then apologies, that was us. You couldn't miss Barry with his King Charles hair style and umbrella !

Anyone else remember The Great American Disaster pub in the early 70's ? regards

Phil Nadin


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Comments (82)

Topic: Guys n Dolls
First < 1 2
Baz says...
Phil I think the Manchester Beat clock is possibly Australian Time because that is where the website is based. Must admit; it had me puzzled almost as much as the whereabouts of the errant Dan O'Connell. Daniel, where art thou? I've looked ... Read More
1st October 2016 2:14pm
Graeme Handley says...
Hi I worked at G&D in 1971 + Oxford St x 2 Trafalgar Sq Carnaby St & Regent St . It was a long time ago so not too sure if the stores were under the same name. I eventually moved back to Australia in 1973 . What great memories .
3rd September 2016 12:37pm
lorraine says...
I do remember Phil sergeant he used to call cowboy boots pods which always made me laugh. And yes Dennis the young student who always came out with us after work. Sometimes staff would meet up for breakfast at Piccadilly before work how was there ... Read More
2nd March 2016 8:35am
Pauline Beckett nee Fletcher says...
I worked at Guys and dolls,I remember Sue Draca a girl called joan with short hair,i was taken ill one day and she took me home in a taxi and was very kind to me...The place was buzzing on a Saturday,I remember serving Rita from coronation St and ... Read More
11th May 2016 2:49am
Dan Oconnell says...
Hi im writing on here for my friend dan oconnell , he aint so good with technology but hes trying to get hold of some old friends. Hope you guys and dolls see this and can help dan connect
3rd July 2016 12:44am
phil says...
we all remember Dan, me, Rick, Barry etc etc and I can say one thing that as always dear in his heart - 'Sandman' by America
best ragards Dan
7th July 2016 1:44am
Baz says...
Dan Hope things are fine with you. Andy Jarvis asked me if I'd seen or heard from you. If you remember, we last met at Derek and Lynda's place at Newhey in about August 1983. That wasn't a very happy time for any of us, was it? I'm ... Read More
30th September 2016 7:12am
David stewart says...
I worked at G & D for a while before I went to college. I worked with Brian king,Dennis Greenburg,Mike Bradbury was our boss,And on Saturdays we had a Dj,s yes I remember Alan dean. And I also remember the security tags that we had to put on the ... Read More
18th October 2016 2:18pm
Dan Oconnell says...
Hi guys and dolls, im here with dan oconnell again sorry for the late reply. He says if any of you want to get hold of him and catch up you can get him on Facebook. Like previously stated he aint good with technology but hes ok on Facebook so could ... Read More
2nd December 2016 8:07pm
Baz says...
To Dan's friend If Dan is sufficiently capable of accessing Facebook; why is he therefore unable to send a message via the Manchester Beat site? Both Phil and I do not use Facebook at any time. I would assume that this site and its contributors ... Read More
25th December 2016 3:49am
Phil says...
Remember Geoff Berrons ? Bus conductor extraordinaire.
28th December 2016 12:02am
Baz says...
29th December 2016 9:28pm
Phil N says...
No, not the Who but the what. Great guy who worked as a bus conductor of all things. Tall, long hair and ticket machine ? Clearly not. Zenon knew him !
Regards Phil
29th December 2016 10:12pm
Baz says...
You mean like that Stan Shunpike bloke on the Harry Potter Knight's bus. I love that shrunken head with a Caribbean accent: "Okay Ernie, take her away"
31st December 2016 9:56pm
Phil N says...
It's goin' to be a bumpy ride ! - no not him.
1st January 2017 2:15am
Baz says...
Phil I've made no less than about five attempts to reply but the page switches off. Wonder if it's because this forum has become reduced to a dialogue between me and thee. I would have thought the previous contributors would have had ... Read More
1st January 2017 9:27pm
Paul webmaster says...
Hi - seems to work fine for me. Don't u hate it when people say that - but this message is proof :-)
1st January 2017 9:48pm
Baz says...
Hmm, you could say that. I had a message which cut out after the final preview and was lost about five times. I did nothing to pre-empt it; don't know why it happened. Thank you Paul, hope life down under is proving OK. You'd never recognise ... Read More
2nd January 2017 2:14am
Baz says...
To those people I worked with all of those years ago at G&D/The Westerner, and to those I was especially close to at some time: Have a very Happy Christmas and I hope that the new year of 2017 will be a fulfilling and happy one for all of you. I ... Read More
25th December 2016 2:09am
lorraine says...
Quite a few people have mentioned Brian king one of Brians best friends at that time was David Golembeck and Davids dad Gerry had a chain of unisex boutiques called IN GEAR . I worked at the bury branch at princess parade. Brian would sometimes came ... Read More
8th April 2017 6:28am
Alan Cooney (Sale) says...
I was in Guys n Dolls over several days during the 70's installing a new phone system. Amazing place! Remember the plush thick carpet (pink & purple) and loads of golden/chrome handrails. Non stop Funky Music - typically by Chic - ... Read More
27th July 2017 6:00pm
Martin Ainscow (Manchester) says...
I remember around 1971 maybe I went in there with my mother she bought me a Paisley kipper tie and went up the top floor where the record store was and bought I hear you knocking by Dave Edmunds. I was about 10, I remember being served by a ... Read More
8th October 2017 7:58pm
The Baz says...
Christmas Greetings for 2017 to all survivors from 35-43 Oldham St. It wouldn't surprise me that if by now the ranks are beginning to thin out, forty-seven years after the opening of the G&D store. Hope you all have a very Happy Christmas ... Read More
10th December 2017 3:24am
Hot Buttered Toast says...
Hi, The Baz, nice to see some new scribers to this page. Yes many moons since G&D. Don't remember any of it of course - too long ago! Still, nice thought - Happy Christmas to all the old codgers who have sold a shirt or two. New a Baz once, ... Read More
10th December 2017 4:11am
Hot Buttered Toast says...
The 'dobs' should have been bods. Sorry HBT
10th December 2017 4:13am
The Baz says...
Ahhh HBT this humble scribe happenth to be the one and the same Baz of old. Forgot and prefixed it with 'The', din' I?. Anyway, HBT, as I am currently indisposed with the seasonal virus, I'll take this opportunity to announce my ... Read More
13th December 2017 9:52pm
The Baz says...
HBT. Consider yourself forgiven for misuse of word 'dobs'. This is still a democracy (well so I'm told) so the grammar police are unlikely to come crashing through your front door unannounced. Incidentally, have you seen the Manchester ... Read More
13th December 2017 10:20pm
Hot Buttered Toast says...
Makes a change from missing the train in the 70's ! very best regards HBT
15th December 2017 10:09pm
Hot Buttered Toast says...
When was Kelly ? I do remember the drummer beckoning me over several times while they were playing. He was pointing down to his foot so as all good roadies do I got down and, not knowing a thing about drums, tried to look as though I knew what I was ... Read More
15th December 2017 10:19pm
The Baz says...
Would have made interesting watching - Roy going through the motions of playing a now non-existent axe on stage while you were re-stringing it in the dark somewhere else. As for the Mather College lighting, I recall that notwithstanding 90 minutes ... Read More
24th December 2017 1:38am
Hot Buttered Toast says...
Nothing at all to do with G & D, however, a lot to do with Manchesterbeat ! Have a Merry Christmas Baz. Regards Zennon.
24th December 2017 11:52pm
The Baz says...
Re: HBT's undeserved rebuke over unrelated comments on G&D forum, 24th December. Then make a G&D comment and don't make it slushy or sentimental. Tell it as it really was! No, it'd be better if you don't actually. Happy New ... Read More
30th December 2017 12:13am
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