THREE Teddy boys got more than they bargained for when they loitered outside Francis Devlin’s general store in Forge Street, in Provan, Glasgow, early one morning in July 1956. Certain that they were going to hold him up, and disinclined to give them the chance to do so, Mr Devlin grabbed a 12-inch ham knife and went out to meet them, accompanied by Chief, his five-year-old Alsatian. Taking one look at the dog - and, perhaps, the knife as well - the Teddy boys fled.

Mr Devlin said he had seen the youths loitering the previous evening as he was shutting up his shop.

They came back at 6.45am. One stood at the corner while the others dashed into the shop. When they saw Mr Devlin with a customer, they ran out again. Mr Devlin decided against phoning 999 from the phone box on the corner, as that would have meant leaving his shop empty.

“I decided to take the initiative,” he said. “I took Chief by the collar and went to the door with the ham knife in my other hand.

“When they youths saw me, they took off fast. I don’t think they’ll be back, but they’ll know what to expect if they try again.”