The BBC's "Gluepot"
I'd never come across "The Gluepot" until I read Tony Murray's account of Anthony Cronin's comic novel The Life of Riley. And it turns out I work barely a hundred yards from the place.
It's the colloquial name for one of the BBC pubs which encircle (not strictly true - they are all on the Fitzrovia side) Broadcasting House. This particular one is 'The George', a decent old boozer on the junction of Great Portland Street and Mortimer Street. I can say this with some first hand knowledge as I popped in there this lunchtime for - a great rarity for me - a quick half.
In the lobby as you enter from the Mortimer Street side is an account of how The George got its BBC nickname. I've taken a photo, but it's not a model specimen so I'll also transcribe its account.
'This house is known in the area and especially to the older BBC people as "The Gluepot".
'It was christened thus by Henry Wood, the conductor, who used to rehearse his orchestras and give concerts in the Queen's Hall which was at the rear of this building, on the site where the St. George's Hotel now stands. During breaks in rehearsals and concerts, his musicians, being thirsty people, made their way to this house to slake their thirsts. Many times several of them drank too deeply rather than wisely and were late in returning to their musical duties, where they were severely reprimanded by The Maestro and accused of staying too long "in that bloody Gluepot".
'We dedicate this Gluepot to the memory of the great Sir Henry Wood.'
robert stephen spear
my father was the manger of The Glue Pot, it was in Netherfield Road, on the corner of Luther street until 1966
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