AH, we miss the old SDP and its ways.

John Campbell's life of Roy Jenkins describes Roy's Hillhead by-election triumph in March 1982.

So many of his grand friends, and SDP and Liberal top brass, came to Glasgow to support him that David Steel was worried that the campaign was far too posh southern English for a city as resolutely down-to-earth as Glasgow. He had good reason to worry. One quintessentially Kensington lady, Campbell writes: "Drew satirical attention for running up and down some of the poorest tower blocks - in shocking lilac tights."

Loading article content

Meaty issue

IT wasn't all plain sailing for Woy. On his death in 2003, Murray Ritchie remembered him complaining that the Glasgow accent was impenetrable.

One misanthrope asked him at a public meeting if he would keep the Pope out of Partick. Woy, thinking the man was talking about pork, said yes, it would indeed be banned, especially if it was found to be diseased.

United we fall

MANCHESTER United fans turned on Wayne Rooney for a lacklustre performance during their team's defeat by Bayern Munich. One online fan, however, took a more reasoned approach: "You can't really expect a grown man to take responsibility for his actions and put in a top-class ­performance every week for only £300,000."


ALASTAIR McKenzie says that when they built the Red Road flats, they were apparently going to put in an additional floor - but that's another storey.

Animal magic

YOU may have heard this one before, but The Diary is nothing if not a repository of old jokes.

Gerry MacKenzie says: "Your taxidermy tale reminded me of the little old lady who had two pet chimpanzees.

"They both caught some awful lurgy and died. Wishing to cherish them forever, she took them to a reputable taxidermist and asked if they could be preserved.

"'Would you like them mounted?', he asked.

"The shocked old lady replied: 'Oh no ... just holding hands would be fine'."

Hole lot of trouble

DIARY colleague Vivienne Nicoll, just back from South Africa and ­Swaziland, says that Glasgow ­motorists can stop complaining about potholes.

"In some rural parts of South Africa," she says, "there are potholes large enough to park a car in. They're between six and eight inches deep and entire miles of roads are absolutely pitted with them.

"The only way to negotiate them? Drive on the wrong side of the road."


SOMETHING else that South Africa has that Glasgow, on the whole, hasn't are road-signs that read "Hijack hotspot".

Intrigued, we asked Vivienne if she had any photographs of the signs.

"Well, no," she said patiently, as if explaining things to a child who is rather slow on the uptake.

"Absolutely the last thing you want to do when you see a sign reading "Hijack hotspot" is to climb out of your car and take a photograph of it."

Fair enough. We can see her point.