CHAMPION COLUMN | Who remembers Murray's Pharmacy?

For anyone who lived in Liverpool during the greater part of the 20th century, Murray's Pharmacy on Macquarie Street will be a very familiar name. Liverpool born Gus Murray opened the store at 277 Macquarie Street in 1933 in an era when family run stores dominated the high street. Ashcroft's, Coles, Pearce's, Christiansen's, Wych's and Wheeler's come to mind.

Dr Pirie and Dr Love Joy were the only doctors in Liverpool at the time. Shaw's the only other chemist in town was just a bit further down the street.

The Murray family lived above the shop which was one of the older buildings that once lined most of the western side of Macquarie Street. It was originally graced with an overhanging veranda and iron lace work. Gus and wife Barbara had three sons, Patrick, Robert and Sean who spent much of their childhood playing on that veranda. The building still stands today, sadly without the veranda.

Pat joined the family business in the 1950s and in 1962 gained his qualifications as a pharmacist.

Pat had passions outside pharmacy which included photography, film and local history. This was to manifest itself in the store which sold photographic equipment and displayed historic photos of Liverpool. Pat was an early member of the Liverpool Historical Society joining in 1960. He took thousands of photos of Liverpool and also filmed super 8 footage of various events including the 1960 Liverpool Sesquicentenary celebrations and re-enactment by the Liverpool Historical Society.

He also went on to successfully serve as an Alderman on Liverpool Council in the late 1960s and contributed significantly to the saving of Collingwood House and Rosebank Cottage.

Pat sold up and retired in 2006 after working for 52 years in the one store. We can be thankful that he is returning to Liverpool as the Historical Society's special guest speaker for our July meeting. Now aged 81, Pat will reminisce over some of his favourite rarely seen photos taken over the years when he worked and lived in Liverpool.

The meeting will be held at the Crossroads Hotel Pavilion One Room, Saturday, July 13 commencing 1.30pm.

Glen op den Brouw is the president of the Liverpool & District Historical Society