The launch of the book Rab Ha': the Glasgow glutton was celebrated appropriately with a meal at Rab Ha's restaurant in the Merchant City. Illustrator Dorothy Whittaker and author Cliff Hanley are in the foreground; others tucking in are entertainers Danny Kyle and Alastair McDonald, chef Philip Heard, Arts and Culture convener Charles Davison and folk singer Hamish Imlach. The photograph was taken for the March 1990 issue of Glasgow City Council's newspaper The Bulletin.
Robert Hall, a vagrant better known as Rab Ha', was famous for his enormous capacity for eating. He was able to make money for himself and others by taking bets on the amount of food he could consume. On one occasion he demolished an entire calf, which had been baked into pies. He was said to have emerged victorious from an eating competition held at the Saracen's Head inn against The Yorkshire Pudding, a challenger of similar appetite.
Rab Ha' died in a hayloft in Hutchesontown in 1843.
Reference: Bulletin photographs, Box 13, March 1990
Reproduced with the permission of Glasgow City Council, Libraries Information and Learning
artists, authors, Bulletin, chefs, eating, entertainers, folk singers, food, gluttons, illustrators, pies, Rab Ha's, restaurants, Saracen's Head, vagrants, Yorkshire Pudding