Total Recall

Swing right a bit, and facing you at the bottom was the Bing Crosby Bar (1964 that is).............. Best run in the world for a Junior Stoker! :wink:


Lantern Swinger
bigbaddog said:
Which one have you fell out of (or into?)

G'day all.

Memories !!!! , memories!!!!.:idea: :idea: :idea: :idea:

I must have fell out off,and/or fell into all of them, more times than I would like to remember, that was of course when this street [it was called "Straite Street"] was the matelots centre of the world above the equator.

If this street could only tell stories, yea!! or even write stories!!!, it would write/tell a best seller, second to none, without the stories from the "Gut" matelots tales would loose much of the flavour that captures the imagination of the land lubber.I myself grew up hearing about this wonderland listening to the exploits of my brother and his mates as they recalled memories that were almost too much for a wee boy to comprehend, it seemed like a different world from reallity, and I must put it down in writing:That I was never dissapointed in the place.

Instead of the usual hum drum places that "Las Vegus"keeps trying emulate, why not bring Straite Street: back to it's full glory, and have John Waynes big brother standing near the top as "Tiny" the Maltese copper that was in with the bricks of this tourist [jack, pongo, rafie and bootneck, bootneck, can't catch me!!] mecca.

This wee poem was by one of my good friends called George Ranunculas",it captures it perfectly I think. circa 1950's and 1960's.


I must go down to the gut again
To the place where there is no sky
And all I ask is a ’Hop Leaf’
And some Marsavin to pass me by.
To see The Gyppo Queen and Cotton Club
To taste the Farsens Blue
But Doug, Arthur and all the rest
I’d do the trip with you.
I remember Ben Marl’s Restaurant(??)
I remember the bangers and Mash
But wasn’t Ben Marl the bloke who helped
Old Spiro take away Gash?
I remember the Barracca Lift Oh Yes
The Gardens at the top
I remember the Garry’s (Karrozin) Conning us
When we tried to make them stop.
I remember so many many things
But lots of it I’ve forgot
So until I get my memory back
I’ll have another tot


ps. it is/was my favourite run ashore above the equator. 8) 8) 8) 8) 8) 8)
Ah, bitter sweet memories! The following is an extract from my website:

Running parallel and next to Kingsway is Straight street or, as we used to call it, ‘The Gut’. It was one long, narrow street of continuous Bars, bright lights, loud music and obese women - but I liked it. There were two bars which I preferred to frequent. The first was the Egyptian Queen, the only Bar with a live band, if you can call a saxophone player and a drummer a band. The other Bar, and probably my favourite, was Dirty Dick’s and, contrary to it’s name, it was quite respectable and the owner, whose name was Richard, made the best cocktails in Malta. The reason why it was called Dirty Dick’s is because each time you paid for a drink, Richard would give you a small card with some filthy innuendo printed on it. I used to have quite a collection.

Just outside Valletta is Florianna and, tucked away between some shops, was a restaurant called Chez Vency which, at the time, was probably the best restaurant in Malta. All the Navy lads used to rave about the restaurant’s steaks and mixed grills

Brings a lump to my throat and a tear to my eye.

I heard all the stories from past shipmates.............

I finally got to visit "The Gut" in September 2000

It is a shadow of its former self : (

But still hanging on in there
Very fond memories of this place. Hop leaf and Cisk (spelling?) bottles I remember returning for a free one with every 3 bottles. Sad I know but every penny counted. I know it will have changed, but one day I will return for a quick looksee.
Was on the way to Malta on the Fife in the 70's, and my Chief asked me if I'd been there before. Yes, said I, lots of times and had a really good time down the Gut with all the bars and willing Maltese girls!! He never said any more.
First night in and down the Gut we were, when I bumped into my Chief who had a cracking Maltese girl on his arm. Of course I gave him a nudge and said something like "see it didn't take you long Chief!!". He said, "Oh sorry, I haven't introduced my wife to you have I?".......I could have died!!
Fond memories indeed....... :roll:


Lantern Swinger
Jerry_Hatrick said:
Ah, bitter sweet memories! The following is an extract from my website:

Just outside Valletta is Florianna and, tucked away between some shops, was a restaurant called Chez Vency which, at the time, was probably the best restaurant in Malta. All the Navy lads used to rave about the restaurant’s steaks and mixed grills

Brings a lump to my throat and a tear to my eye.

G'day Jerry.

When I was on the Cumberland my oppos and I always started all our run ashore, by going into Chez Vensus, for a large "T" Bone steak, chips and egg, [a real 5 star Michelin Food Connoisseurs Meal. lol] we could stand anything that the gut had to throw at us better with a full stomach.

Their food was the best In Malta bar none, and I still think that Malta was the best run ashore above the Equator.

regards pingbosun

Ah, Pingbosun. The four funneled Cumberland, a large T bone steak in Chez Vency's, a run down the Gut followed by a coffee in the Cordino.

Then off to the top of the Barracca lift to find a Royal Marine standing in the middle of the paddling pool shouting ‘Die-soâ€!

Great memories Pingbosun. Now, where did I put that box of Kleenex

J-H, gordon bennet, was that a shock to the system!! Chev Venceys! As a baby sailor I used to save up a months pay to have a steak there! but thouroughly enjoyed it. Did you ever use that other gourmets delight, the Barrel and Basket in Rabat? Floriana was also home to a little bar called The Little Brown Jug. Sunk quite a few illicite drinks in there whilst supposedly attending church at St Andrews!!

Keep Striving.
Did a General Service Commish ' in the med in 1959 1960
Malta was the base ----------- its a great place and was in them days a matelots main watering hole . The Gut was usually the last stop of the nights run ashore.
Apart from the Hop leaf's and the blue labels the other memory was the
Tea in a glass ----tasted fcuking terrible I think they made it with goats milk .or pissed in it --- the devious maltese mind :lol: :lol:

Keep meaning to go back there cos the history of the place is something else.
Some of the happiest days of my service. Deployed Med in '66, my Chief Cook (lovely fella Leo), persuaded me to bring my family out to Malta, borrowed £186 (small fortune) from brother-in-law, to fly them out. Leo introduced me to his oppo in Birzebuggia who let us a house for £11 per month. Wonderful year. Girls (9 and 7) at school in Verdala, boy (5), used to spend most of his time on the foreshore, and out fishing with locals.
Wouldn't even contemplate it now, but they loved kids. Our landlord had two beautiful daughters who were keen (and cheap!) babysitters. We lived in style, visited all the notorious bars in the Gut, had great runs in the Corrodino canteen. Best bit was paying the rent. Went round to Joe's every month with £11 clutched in sticky little fist, Joe said "must have a drink". Marsovin opened ------------------------------------staggered home!
Wonderful memories.



Lantern Swinger
bigbaddog said:
If you ever wanted to know what your Maltese babe will look like in years to come......

(Miss Malta - 2004)

Check out her mother. 8O

G'day Bigbaddog..

I remember her mother when we went there in the fifties, lol. she was a stunner then mate, on the way back from the Gut in the early morning there would be some who would still fancy her.

Come to think of it?? I went to bed with a lot that looked like Miss Malta 2004.

However, badly shaken on waking up in the morning, to find that her mother had swop-ed places and she now looked like the other one ehhhh!!!!ha ha ha

neil6814 said:
The patrol report read:-
..............and did call Maltese Policeman Gomez, a big fat Maltese bastard.
I remember these blighters wearing their uniform when acting as bouncers at the bars - if any poor jack retaliated, they got done for assault on an officer of the law.
But this was in Dom Mintoff's day - and then he let the Libyans in....what a mistake they made there !!

Similar threads

Latest Threads