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Record catalogues

Back covers of catalogues issued by The Gramophone Co. Ltd, (HMV) in the year of my birth. I remember William Brough clearly, but have no recollection of his practising as an optician.
Presumably these catalogues were freebies. I'm surprised both by the number of familiar items listed in them and by the (larger) number that have faded into complete obscurity. Why someone kept the catalogues, for me to find in the bottom of a cupboard some 7 decades later, I've no idea.
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Picture added on 23 January 2012 at 10:55
Comments:
Very interesting captions, Ian. I clearly remember Wm. (Bill) Brough as a jeweller who had his shop on Broad Street, Kirkwall although the designation 'Optician' does surprise me! Do you think this is the same person?
Added by Lex F. Craigie on 23 January 2012
Don't know for sure, Lex, but it must be more than likely the Wm Broughs were the same man. Frankly, I don't remember his shop selling gramophone records either, but I wasn't in the market for such things in those days. (Had to save my money for James Gray's billiards hall. I was a keen collector of empty jam-jars which, returned to a suitable shop, were worth a penny for a one-pound jar, twopence for a two-pounder. Three two-pounders = 20 minutes on the green baize.)
Added by Ian Hourston on 24 January 2012
James Gray's billiards hall - would that be the one in picture #954 and picture #955, next to the (now) Ferry Inn? From Willie's comment it looks to have been there until the 1960s, so I'm not being cheeky!
Added by Steven Heddle on 24 January 2012
Dead right, Steven. James Gray, a terrible sufferer from asthma-eczema, ran a very respectable establishment lit by electricity from his own generator and heated in winter by a coal stove. It was quite a meeting-place for males, from school kids to pensioners, some of whom seldom if ever actually played. (I don't know what would have happened had females suddenly got a taste for the game.) A useful sideline was recharging wireless-set accumulators from the generator at, I think, sixpence a time.
In those days billiards was more popular than snooker, but of course it didn't lend itself to television the way the latter does. Incidentally, snooker commentator Ted Lowe's much-quoted 'gaffe' on the lines of 'and for those of you watching in black-and-white, the pink is next to the green' always seemed to me to be unfair. As I recall, the green was on its spot, and anyone half-acquainted with snooker knows where that is.

[Thanks Ian. As a frequenter and late lamenter of Costie's (I must have been among the last to play tennis there too) I'm fascinated by the old billiard halls and pleased to find out more about this one. Any other billiard halls, or lost snooker tables? The only 'public' tables I can think of these days are in the clubs - Kirkwall Legion (3), Orkney Club (2), and Rousay Snooker Club (1) - Steven]
Added by Ian Hourston on 24 January 2012
Not only was W.Brough a jeweller and watch repairer but he must have been agent for crested china. I have a model of Kitchener's Memorial on Marwick head with his name in the base. I hope to have a photo of it on here soon.
Added by Ian Cameron on 25 January 2012
Steven, there was I believe a billiard table in the Kirkwall Unionist Club, which occupied the large front room on the first floor of the building now occupied by Foubister & Bain, Chartered Accountants, Broad Street. The one time I was upstairs in those offices they still had the brass plate with the club name, and I think you could see some subsidence caused by the weight of the table too.
Added by Paul Sutherland on 23 February 2012
More on billiard tables for you, Steven - before the First World War the Castle, Imperial and Kirkwall Hotels all had them, according to their adverts.

[Does the Masonic have billiard tables? - Steven]
Added by Paul Sutherland on 24 February 2012
The Masonic do indeed have tables.
Added by Neil Johnstone on 24 February 2012
There was a full size billiard table in the old BB hall in George Street (both long gone). There was only about 3 or 4 feet all round the table to the walls so it was difficult to play when the white was near the edge of the table and there were a lot of shots with the cue up in the air!
Added by Ian M Gibson on 24 February 2012
Only one left at the Masonic Club now.

I remember the one in the BB Hall indeed Ian, the edge was used by the side drummers for learning and practice as I recall.
Added by Alastair on 25 February 2012
Yes Alastair...Happy days indeed
Added by Peter Burges on 27 February 2012
I HAVE TWO RECORD SLEEVES OF WM. BROUGH. HE IS DESCRIBED AS 'WATCHMAKER, JEWELLER AND GRAMOPHONE SPECIALIST'. ALSO AS AGENTS FOR HMV AND COLUMBIA GRAMOPHONES AND HMV, COLUMBIA, ZONO, REGAL & PARLOPHONE RECORDS. SHOPS AT 96 VICTORIA STREET, STROMNESS AND KIRKWALL (NO ADDRESS) ARE QUOTED. I WOULD TENTATIVELY DATE THESE AS FROM THE 1930S. ANY FURTHER INFO. FROM ANYBODY WOULD BE APPRECIATED.
Added by JOHN BANKS on 21 September 2017
Could I point out that there were two William Broughs - father & son. The father started the family business in Stromness and it is possible he may have also been an optician (I will need to check Peace's almanacs for verification ) Wm Brough junr came to Kirkwall in the early 1920's and did indeed have his shop in Broad St. in NO.13. When Jim Kemp, another jeweller and a brother of Kemp the draper died, Bill Brough bought No.7 and when he retired it was bought by Ola Gorie and is now part of the two blocks comprising 7 - 15 Broad St with the Longship, Tait & Styles etc.
Added by David Partner on 14 November 2017
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