Falkirk dance hall was the place to be

George and Madaline O'Brien (nee Pacitti) pictured in 1958
George and Madaline O'Brien (nee Pacitti) pictured in 1958
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Ask anyone from a certain generation where they met their life partner and a good number of them will say “the dancing”.

And in the Falkirk area ‘the dancing’ would usually have meant the well known, popular venue that was Doak’s.

Over the years it’s also been Oil Can Harry’s, the Maniqui and presently Storm, and back in the late 1950s it was where George O’Brien from Falkirk found the love of his life.

Retired accountant George, now 75, was in his late teens in the late fifties when he met future wife Madaline Pacitti, who was a singer with the band at Doak’s.

Madaline also worked in the offices of Alexander’s in Brown Street, but it was her singing skills and warm personality that stole George’s heart.

He said: “We met at Doak’s in October 1957 and Madaline sang there until 1960. She loved singing. She was quite good and even had an audition for the One o’Clock gang, but I think Dorothy Paul got the job.

“I remember at the time you had to have a girl on your arm or you didn’t get in to Doak’s so we would meet up with girls just to get in then go our separate ways.

“There was no alcohol either in those days, but it was always great fun and exciting when you’re that age.”

George’s father Jimmy was also a well known barman in the Wheatsheaf pub.

If you have a memory you’d like to share, e-mail editorial@falkirkherald.co.uk