Secret Scotland

If it's secret, and in Scotland…

Oops – Maid of the Loch slips on slip

A perfect opportunity for the Armchair Experts and the We Told You So society to have a joint meeting and celebration, as the Maid of the Loch suffered a very public mishap during her trip up the old slipway at Balloch.

As usual, there were plenty of people on hand who knew better than those who were actually carrying out the work.

One always wonder why they never come forward BEFORE such events, take over, and prevent their occurrence.

Bystanders suggested the problem was with the cradle at the front and they questioned whether the ship had been put up correctly.

Whoops! Maid of Loch falls back in water in winching fail

Maybe they’re not as smart as they often make out, and just smug people equipped with perfect 20/20 hindsight!

Sadly, although the BBC offers and embeddable video of the incident (which seems to be a lot slower and uneventful than some reports seem to suggest), WordPress kills it when I include it, so you’ll have to click on the links below to see it.

Maid of the Loch slips back into water

Workers flee as Maid of the Loch paddle steamer slides back into water

Some more…

Watch as attempt to haul Maid of the Loch out of the water fails

In pictures: An attempt to bring the Maid of the Loch out of the water fails

Hopefully it was something as simple as the failure of an old or little used part on the old slipway (itself a historic relic) which will be nothing more than an inconvenience to repair or replace, and nothing valuable was damaged.

Maid of the Loch - undergoing slipping

Maid of the Loch – undergoing slipping back in 2006


10/01/2019 Posted by | Civilian, Maritime, Transport | , , | Leave a comment

Junctions where pedestrians should take care

It’s only three months since we had “Scotland’s most dangerous traffic junction has been revealed” and noted St Vincent Street and Douglas Street junction is ‘Crash Central’.

Now we have…

Five of Scotland’s most dangerous places for pedestrians can be found in Glasgow, according to new police figures.

Thirteen hotspots have topped the list of where pedestrians are most at risk in Scotland.


Balgrayhill Road near the Viewpoint Place bus stop, where three people suffered minor injuries in two separate incidents.

A803 Springburn Road and Atlas Road junction near Sighthill Cemetery. Three people were injured in two separate incidents. A 32-year-old woman was seriously hurt on March 3 and a 54-year-old man also suffered serious injuries on February 14.

Renfrew Street and Renfield Street junction, near the Pavillion Theatre. Three people suffered minor injuries there in three separate incidents.

Cathcart Road and Allison Street junction in Govanhill, where three people were slightly hurt in three separate incidents.

Argyll Street in Kelvingrove near the junction with Sauchiehall Street. A 46-year-old woman and five-year-old child were seriously hurt in an incident there on September 11, while a 21-year-old woman suffered minor injuries in the same place on April 4.

Glasgow’s most dangerous junctions for pedestrians revealed

I may be suffering from the effects of my ‘cynical gene’, but I’m uncomfortable with the language used in this article.

In the quote, two phrases stand out for me…

“most dangerous places for pedestrians”


“where pedestrians are most at risk”

There no context offered for the ‘incidents’ referred to, so we have no idea who was at fault, who caused the incident, or the circumstances.

While not intending to excuse any dangerous driving, I walk enough streets and see enough people taking chances in dashes across the road through moving traffic to be impressed that so many ‘get away’ with the stupid stunts, and that many drivers are lucky not to have damaged cars from such behaviour.

Are these so-called pedestrian ‘hotspots’ arising because of road traffic, or because they are badly designed spots where pedestrians cannot navigate the road/traffic safely, or locations where they are funnelled into attempting to cross at a hazardous spot, where barriers or crossings should really be installed?

Simply listing the numbers is NOT enough.

Context is very relevant.

It’s not good enough just to leave the assumption that the driver was at fault.

With no ‘nice’ pics of such incidents, I thought I’d go with this infographic, since Scotland/Glasgow is currently surveying opinion on a 20 mph limit for traffic in certain areas – and I have noted a surprisingly/worryingly/disturbingly large number of public commenters say /claim dropping from 30 mph to 20 mph makes no difference.

I wonder who they are, and what their agenda is?

Speed Vs Injury


10/01/2019 Posted by | Civilian, Transport | | Leave a comment

Old painted wall advert in Blytheswood Street

It always pays to look up, and around, as you might spot something interesting.

In this case it’s the remains of an old painted advert for a business in Bath Street, high on a wall in Blytheswood Street, just down from Sauchiehall Street.

Some is still quite readable, while parts have faded or weathered to the extent that a good guess is needed.

Not sure if I mentioned the case of a similar sort of advert I spotted in the news a while ago.

Sadly, although it was an old painted wall advert, the product shown is still current.

So, there was a problem when a proposal was made to save/restore it.

The locals wanted a cut of the advertising revenue if they were going to support, or not object to, the project.

I think the outcome is still pending.

I was left wondering if there was ANY revenue, given the age of ad I thought it would have been derelict/abandoned years ago.

Click for bigger.

Blytheswood Street Painted Advert

Blytheswood Street Painted Advert

10/01/2019 Posted by | Civilian, photography | , , | Leave a comment

Today is Cut Your Energy Costs Day

10 January is Cut Your Energy Costs Day.

Hadn’t heard of this one before, but it was established by the CEEA (Canadian Energy Efficiency Alliance), so that explains why not.

Joking aside, it’s a subject relevant to many these days.

Except, apparently, any of my neighbours!

At this time of year, it’s always obvious when their gas boilers are running as great clouds of condensation pour out the flues on the side of their houses.

To me, it looks as if they seldom switch off, since I see the clouds every time I look out of the window, or walk along the street.

Yet everyone seems to plead poverty.

I wish I could turn mine on like them – I could probably have mine dumped for all the use it gets, but then again, I have to have it to hand in case things like The Beast from the East strike!

I wonder if this day is just a scam by ‘Energy Consultants’ and advisors?

After all, it’s pretty easy to cut your energy costs, just turn stuff off when not in use, use LED lighting, and don’t turn on stuff you don’t need in the first place. I’ll assume also that things like insulation are dealt with separately. Or, if you’re like me, you suddenly discovered there was no need for it – if you’re not bothering to use heating, you’ve nothing to ‘save’ by paying out for insulation!



10/01/2019 Posted by | Civilian | | Leave a comment


%d bloggers like this: