Secret Scotland

If it's secret, and in Scotland…

Why I don’t complain about cats dumped in carriers or at doors

Unlike many official sources, which are highly critical of people who dump or abandon cats in carriers or loose boxes (ie not taped shut) and/or at doors, I tend not to criticise them as they have taken some care to look after the animals.

While I agree that what they have done is not the best, we don’t know their circumstances, why the have had to abandon their pets, or what their mental status is or, these days, if someone is threatening or controlling them.

However, there are situations where leniency is probably not so appropriate, possibly in this case I was told about in London.

The guys look happy and healthy, but only because they were found soon enough, and rescued.

London boxed cats saved

London boxed cats saved

A few hours earlier, they had been in danger of suffocating, after being placed in cardboard boxes which were then taped up, and left in a lane in London.

I’m not even sure I’d be so critical of the taped boxes, as noted below “We can only assume the intention was for them to die as surely everybody knows animals need to be able to breathe to survive.”

Sadly, I find myself slightly embarrassed (or shocked) by the ignorance, or lack of eduction (or even Common Sense), demonstrated by some people I meet, and even this could be a genuine mistake by someone mistakenly thinking it’s a good idea to prevent the cats escaping the boxes before they are found, running around, getting lost, or hit by cars.

London cat box dump

London cat box dump

Since I don’t touch Facecrook, try this link

I’ll quote the story…

via the Celia Hammond Animal Trust facebook:

Dumped in the night….

We were called out the night of 11th January by a lady returning from work who had noticed several sealed cardboard boxes in an alley in Stratford, near a busy road. She walked past the alley and then went back as she thought she heard miaowing – thank goodness she did, as the boxes were completely sealed shut with masses of parcel tape and the 11 young cats inside would have suffocated if we hadn’t raced straight out to collect them, as there were no air holes in the boxes. We didn’t know their temperaments so didn’t dare open the boxes and risk them flying out into the road, so made a few tiny holes to let air in but not big enough to allow them to rip at the cardboard and escape. Fortunately, it only took a few minutes to drive back to the clinic. The risk of cutting the cats would have made it too dangerous to use scissors to open the boxes, so we used a butter knife to get the cats out as quickly as possible.

We can only assume the intention was for them to die as surely everybody knows animals need to be able to breathe to survive. The boxes cannot have been there very long as without oxygen our vets estimate they probably wouldn’t have lived more than an hour or two. One really strange thing is that these cats are really friendly and have clearly once been loved, handled and cuddled – what on earth would drive an apparently loving owner to do something so terrible? Perhaps it was a family member or neighbour who hated the cats enough to do this.

All the cats are extremely underweight and covered in fleas – our vets treated them for fleas immediately on arrival in the clinic, but we will have to build them up before they are fit enough to be neutered, vaccinated and microchipped before they are rehomed. If you would like to contribute towards their care and helping with the cost of the extra food they all need – we’d be so grateful. You can donate via our donate button here or you can always bring in food toys direct to our clinic.

If anyone in the Stratford area has any ideas about where these cats might have come from, please call us in confidence as we are concerned this situation may not have been resolved and there may be other cats in the owner’s property as we don’t think either of the two adult females are old enough to be the mothers of the nine adolescent cats. If the person who left the cats reads this, please email us on canningtown@celiahammond . org or call 020 7474 8811 so we can collect any other cats you may have and don’t want. There were no clues on the boxes to indicate an address.

We will post an update tomorrow.

Thank you, Wendy, for calling us – you undoubtedly saved these cats’ lives.”

Meanwhile, in Turkey

More here:

Since we’re on a roll…

Another impressive save

Don’t ask…


18/01/2019 Posted by | Civilian | , | Leave a comment

Time to make events pay their way, NOT the hosts – especially when our Winter Gardens are rotting

I wonder if people are generally aware that lucky events like the Commonwealth Games (dumped on Glasgow in 2014), The Olympic Games (probably never coming to Glasgow, thank goodness), and now the first ever World Cycling Championships (set for August 2023, don’t have to PAY for the privilege of disrupting the cities they take place, or all the work needed to allow them to take place.

Glassgow was ‘taken’ for something like £300+ million by the Commonwealth Games, and is now being asked for £15 million in advance of the cycling event.

As usual, the promoters are blackmailing the hosts with promised of wonderful returns and benefits which they will lose out on if they don’t throw money at the organisers, and bring the event Glasgow.

GLASGOW councillors are being urged to approve £15million towards the city hosting most of the events in the first ever World Cycling Championships, taking place in August 2023.

The world governing body for cycling, the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI), revealed last year a plan to combine around a dozen existing individual cycling world championships into one major event every four years.

Following an approach by Glasgow and EventScotland, the UCI has given an exclusive opportunity to Glasgow/Scotland to present its case to host the first championships. The final submission, including funding commitments from the major partners, has to be made by February 2019.

A report to city councillors stated: “This will be the biggest cycling event in the world with over 100 countries represented and over 200 World Champions being crowned during the course of the Championships. The huge media interest will guarantee worldwide broadcast coverage delivering massive international profile for both Glasgow and Scotland.

CHANCE For Glasgow To Get On Its Bike For Historic Hosting Of World’s Biggest Cycling Championships

I’m not even going to waste more of my time digging into this.

You can read more of the fantasy in the linked article. It’s pretty much a self-explaining fiasco.

What I will say is that it’s a scandal that I would NOT mock dopey MP Paul Sweeney if he questioned it with the same vigour he did after hearing ‘tale telling’ about the plants in the People’s Palace Winter Garden.

But, I doubt we’ll hear as much as a squeak.

That this famous and long established Winter Garden should be languishing in closure for the lack of £7.5 million while there is a farcical demand for £15 million to be poured into a transient event that lasts for a few days is little short of shameful.

And gets even worse when we reflect on the dead shell that was Tollcross Winter Garden, closed after some 2011 storm damage, and could not be spared a penny when the millions were being squandered on the Commonwealth Games, and in particular the swimming pool in the sports centre only a few metres from that glasshouse.

As they say…

Somebody need to GET A GRIP!

Tollcross Winter Garden – ignored while millions were spent on an adjacent Commonwealth Games venue…

Tollcross Winter Gardens Derelict

Tollcross Winter Gardens Derelict

People’s Palace Winter Garden – closed while £7.5 million is searched for, but £15 million is being demanded for a cycling event…

Closed Winter Garden North

Closed Winter Garden North

18/01/2019 Posted by | Civilian, council | , , , | Leave a comment

Dippy arrives in Kelvingrove

I was silly enough to think I might have been able to catch Dippy’s arrival and assembly at Kelvingrove.

Between the weather (it both did get cold, AND snowed) and other issues – probably not going to happen.

However, it seems out local media are a bit closer, and it’s easier for them to play catch up with the beastie.

After sailing across the Irish Sea, Dippy the Natural History Museum London’s famous diplodocus, has arrived at Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum.

The awe-inspiring dino is being delicately unpacked by a team of specialists who are tasked with piecing together the iconic dinosaur cast.

And never one to miss an unveiling, we at Glasgow Live were given access to see the incredible creature take shape earlier today.

We sneak behind the scenes as Dippy the dinosaur takes shape at Kelvingrove

Well, I guess I just have to go with this pic again.

Maybe I’ll get a ‘filled’ version.

Kelvingrove Entrance Hall Occupation

Kelvingrove Entrance Hall Occupation

On a positive note, it was interesting to spot Jessica from “That’s TV”, and her video camera, caught in the GlasgowLive video – recall she tried to interview me at the new Mackintosh statue.

On the downside, it’s always sad to see someone who has no idea about what Health & Safety actually means, and see all those people dressed up in hi-vis jackets and hard hats. It may look good, but I’m pretty sure if they had somebody that knew what they were doing, then the staff would not have been dressed up for looks, but equipped with personal protective equipment more suited to the job of assembling a model dinosaur.

I just find this irritating.

18/01/2019 Posted by | Civilian, council, photography | , , | Leave a comment

The Abbot sent us a Buckfast post

Sadly, The Abbott has informed us he has to go into semi-retiral, but has given is a post about a recent auction…

As he notes at the end, it will be interesting to see if the bid was genuine.

Vintage Buckfast miniature from 1930s – Crazy Money!

Buckfast, maturing for over 80 years – yet nobody is going to drink it.

What a waste.

Still, thrifty Scot seeks value.

Glasgow man discovers rare antique Buckfast miniature in parents’ attic

Offered on eBay…

Antique Buckfast Minature (over 80 years old) – Authenticated by J Chandler&Co


Vintage Buckfast Miniature

Vintage Buckfast Miniature


I delayed this post until the eBay auction had ended.

This has now happened, apparently with a winning bid of £10,000 for this miniature Buckfast bottle.

It will be interesting to see if that was a genuine bid, and is honoured with payment.

Buckfast £10,000

Buckfast £10,000

There is another, similar, bottle on offer, still with a few days to go.

Like the first, it is described as being verified by  J Chandler & Co.

For some reason, it has only attracted a bid of £100 so far.

Buckfast £100

Buckfast £100

18/01/2019 Posted by | Civilian | , | Leave a comment

Cunningar Loop upgrades given permission to proceed

When things move fast, they really do move fast.

Last time I observed that the park/attraction at Cunningar Loop could almost have been described as barely complete, yet plans were already being submitted to change/improve it.

The changes have been approved, including a community bothy, garden , and an elevated walkway with viewing tower.

A report by South Lanarkshire planning officers stated: “It is noted that the proposed development would allow the provision of improved public facilities within Cuningar Loop. As such, the principle of the development is to be supported in this case.

“It is further noted that the proposed developments would not have any adverse amenity impact on the surrounding area. No letters of objection have been submitted in respect of the proposed development.

“A protected species survey have (sic) been provided to demonstrate that there would be no adverse impact.”

GO-Ahead Given For Viewing Tower, Tree-Top Walkway And Community Bothy At River Clyde Urban Park

There are some brilliant aerial shots of the place in that article – I’m guessing reGlasgow has a drone, AND an approved operator for commercial use.

I’m a little surprised to see so much interest in a relatively new feature.

Perhaps it indicates MORE such places are needed, or wanted.

Having been there a few times since it opened, I think the park is perhaps a little smaller than the developers imagine it to be.

As it has become more popular, I’ve found it can sometimes become a little too densely packed with visitors on a nice sunny day, and their children running around. That’s not to be taken as a complaint, merely an observation given the space available, and how close people get when it’s busy.

It’s nice to go to a park and enjoy some open space – but if there’s no open space?

I’d like to think the planners will be wary of any future developments cramming more features or attraction in.

Cunningar Evolve Sculpture

Cunningar Evolve Sculpture

Artist’s impression, on a quiet day.

Viewing Tower Image J M Architects

Viewing Tower Image J M Architects

18/01/2019 Posted by | Civilian, council, photography | , , | Leave a comment

Oldest periodic table found at St Andrews University

Fascinating discovery at Scotland’s first university.

Found during a laboratory clear-out at the university, the periodic table chart believed to be the oldest in the world.

Experts have dated the find as being printed between 1879 and 1886, it has an inscription identifying a scientific printer who operated in Vienna between 1875 and 1888.

Gallium and scandium, discovered in 1875 and 1879 respectively, are present but germanium, discovered in 1886, does not appear.

Russian chemist and inventor Dmitri Mendeleev made his famous disclosure on periodicity in 1869.

A full-size facsimile has been placed on display in the School of Chemistry, with the original being stored under climate-controlled conditions.

Periodic Table Preservation Pic Credit University of St Andrews

Periodic Table Preservation Pic Credit University of St Andrews

18/01/2019 Posted by | Civilian | , , , | Leave a comment

Almost perfect supermarket aisle

I have to complain about this supermarket and its male/female discrimination.

The aisles MUST be reorganised to bring the whisky shelves closer!

Crazy cat person supermarket

Crazy cat person supermarket

After all…

Crazy Cat Man has to shop too!

Crazy Cat Man

Crazy Cat Man

18/01/2019 Posted by | Civilian | , | Leave a comment

Night bridges – St Andrew’s suspension bridge

The other bridge I managed to catch before my ‘Night bridge’ pic collecting was curtailed, the St Andrew’s suspension bridge on Glasgow Green.

St Andrew's Suspension Bridge Night

St Andrew’s Suspension Bridge Night

I was a little disappointed to see that around half of the lights on this bridge had failed, but then wondered if that might have been a good thing, given the amount of processing I found was needed to kill of some of the glare from those that were left.

It’s nice to see something that retains some fairly noticeable colour when seen at night.

I should make a note to go back and do a set of pics on the lights fitted to this bridge. They are unusually large, and for external fittings, also very clear. Looking too closely at such fittings often shows they are discoloured, cloudy, or even frosted, and not really great subjects.

Stepping back, I couldn’t decide if the wider view was better than the close-in first shot just of the bridge.

So, it doesn’t cost anything, and I collected the wider view too.

St Andrew's Suspension Bridge Night Wide

St Andrew’s Suspension Bridge Night Wide

18/01/2019 Posted by | Civilian, council, photography, Transport | , | Leave a comment

Today is Thesaurus Day

18 January is Thesaurus Day.

A thesaurus is a reference work that lists words grouped together according to similarity of meaning (containing synonyms and sometimes antonyms). This contrasts to a dictionary, which provides definitions for words, and usually lists them in alphabetical order.

I’d never even heard the word ‘thesaurus’ until late on in my school life, then I had the words “Roget’s Thesaurus” burned into my memory by one of the teachers, who seem infatuated by the thing, and used that short two word phrase at every opportunity.

Not that I’m complaining, and even went out and bought my own copy of that mighty tome, such was my fascination with the thing.

It’s actually worn out, such was the use it got by me, and people I was silly enough to show and lend it to.

I could write a ‘smart-arse’ phrase using a whole run of words that all mean something the same, but that’s both silly, and just being a show-off, so it’s not going to happen.

Instead, if the thesaurus is new to you, I suggest you get to know it online, or buy one if you are still someone who favours paper.



18/01/2019 Posted by | Civilian | | Leave a comment


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