Discover the tales behind the names in St Andrews ...

A new book is offering a fascinating tour of St Andrews' pub scene, charting the town's taverns, alehouses and watering holes from past centuries to more recent times.

Friday, 24th March 2017, 3:54 pm
Updated Saturday, 25th March 2017, 11:49 am
The Rule building in South Street dates back to around 1840.
The Rule building in South Street dates back to around 1840.

Readers can discover the tales behind the names, explore the town’s best ‘19 holes’ where golf legends of the past and present have enjoyed a drink, or relax in the basement bar where Prince William and Kate Middleton famously courted.

Author Gregor Stewart, who grew up in St Andrews, explained why he decided to write the book. He said: “I had just finished writing Secret St Andrews for Amberley Publishing, when they made me aware of their ‘Pubs’ range and asked if I thought St Andrews would be a suitable fit for the range.

“Having already read a lot of historic material regarding the brewing and pub trade in St Andrews, I recognised that telling the history of the town through the pubs would be an appealing an interesting read for many, and so I jumped at the opportunity to write the book.”

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The Keys Bar in Market Street is one of the oldest pubs in St Andrews.

Gregor said he did his research by reading a large collection of historical books as well as the Internet: “I started with the pub as it is today, and worked backwards through the history of the buildings and the town, using both my own books and online resources.

“I also studied old maps to find out how the town had changed over the centuries, and spoke to several of the publicans. Through this, I was able to source a lot of pieces of information and bring them together to give the story behind the pub and interesting facts about the buildings and past occupants.”

Gregor hopes his new book will appeal to a wide audience: “I have written it to include something for everyone. The historical side and the significance of some of the pubs and the people will appeal to a lot of the townsfolk, hopefully bringing back memories for some of the older generation.

“Visitors to the town and the students will have an opportunity to read about a pub they have visited as well as finding out some interesting facts about other pubs, which may make them want to visit to experience more of the town’s culture.

St Andrews Pubs by Gregor Stewart

“Visitors may also find the details of famous people, both past and present, that have visited the pubs informative and choose to follow the tracks of the rich and famous.”

Gregor will be signing copies of the book at Waterstones in St Andrews this Saturday (March 25) at 2pm.

St Andrews Pubs can also be purchased from

The Keys Bar in Market Street is one of the oldest pubs in St Andrews.
St Andrews Pubs by Gregor Stewart