Secret Scotland

If it's secret, and in Scotland…

Charles Rennie Mackintosh really was originally McIntosh

Charles Rennie Mackintosh

In this year celebrating the 150th anniversary of the birth of Charles Rennie Mackintosh (right), it’s a little surprising to see that none of the accounts referring to Mackintosh appear to have picked up on a small fact relating to the now famous Mackintosh name, and how it could have easily been McIntosh, but for a change made to the family name in the 1880s.

If you visit the Glasgow Police Museum in Bell Street, or have a look at its web site, you will find the story, since his father, William McIntosh, was successful manager within Glasgow Police during latter half of the 19th century.

The Glasgow Police Historical Exhibition contains artefacts and text boards which provide a historical insight into the people, events and other factors which contributed to the founding, development and progress of Britain’s first Police force, the City of Glasgow Police from 1779-1975.

The Glasgow Police Museum, First Floor, 30 Bell Street.


How McIntosh Became Mackintosh

How McIntosh Became Mackintosh



28/06/2018 Posted by | Civilian | , , | Leave a comment

Hill House protection project get close to funding target

Back in February, I noted the ambitious project to erect a protective box around hill

House in Helensburgh, the family home by Charles Rennie Mackintosh commissioned by publisher Walter Blackie.

Although the project has secured most of the funding needed for its completion, £500 k of the £4.5 million target is outstanding, so the hoped for start date of June will slip.

However, a date of 05 July 2018 has been set for the work to begin.

The National Trust for Scotland (NTS) appealed in February for £1.5m in donations towards the £4.5m total cost of a major renovation project.

Work will begin on 5 July, with a giant mesh box being constructed around the house.

It is expected to remain in place for at least five years, protecting the property from the worst of the weather.

Mackintosh Hill House appeal passes £1m milestone

Hill House Enclosure Via NTS Image

Hill House Enclosure Via NTS Image

I haven’t been to Helensburgh for years – I really should threaten the piggy bank, and see how the trains are doing.

Sad to say, last time I did this I found the news was full of stories about the service being withdrawn due to incidents at the town’s station.

28/06/2018 Posted by | Appeal, Civilian | , , , , | Leave a comment

Watch out… DVLA’s about!

Thanks to some fairly frequent ‘jollies’ down to London (for work), in years gone by I got the impression that DVLA patrols fed off Londoners, and seldom, if ever, bothered to venture north of the border.

Down there, all I had to was go wandering around during an evening, and it wouldn’t be long before I found one of their nice yellow clamps being intimate with someone’s car. It was also clear that anyone with a few quid to spare just “Didn’t give a damn”, as the number of clamps I saw on ‘6-figure’ cars was way more than lesser examples, especially those of the ‘clampers’ (those who clamp parked cars – as opposed to DVLA for motoring related offences). Unlike Scotland, private clampers remain free to legally operate their extortion and blackmail.

However, various motoring offences will earn you a DVLA clamp to immobilise your offending vehicle if it’s found on the road.

I don’t know if we’re less inclined to commit those offences up here, and leave our cars lying around on the street to be caught and clamped, or if DVLA really doesn’t venture up here very often, but I seldom see their clamps while wandering around.

But, they do turn up.

DVLA Clamp Collection 01

DVLA Clamp Collection 01

This one was almost on my doorstep – the clamp was gone the next day.

DVLA Clamp Collection 02

DVLA Clamp Collection 02


DVLA Clamp Collection 03

DVLA Clamp Collection 03


DVLA Clamp Collection 04

DVLA Clamp Collection 04

TWINS! – congratulations.

DVLA Clamp Collection 05

DVLA Clamp Collection 05


DVLA Clamp Collection 06

DVLA Clamp Collection 06

Now for something… ‘interesting’.

Wandering around the back of a little industrial estate one night, I found this lot next to a ‘back street’ garage…

DVLA Clamps

DVLA Clamps (Low light, left – Flash, right)

One might be tempted to speculate that the recipients of these awards had their cars towed there, where the tyre was cut off the wheel, allowing the clamp to be removed without having to cut the chain or break the lock. All clamp parts were complete, and undamaged.

Do the sums – a cheap, part-worn tyre costs MUCH less than any fine, and means no points (relevant if the driver actually has a licence).

And, as we all now know from the various fly-on-the-wall police/traffic TV programmes, a motoring offence is probably the least some such offenders are of interest to the police.

It’s now well over a year since I last came across a DVLA clamp – maybe they’ve gone home?

28/06/2018 Posted by | photography, Transport | , | Leave a comment


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