Secret Scotland

If it's secret, and in Scotland…

Two cats, four legs, seems fine

Had to include this one…

31/05/2019 Posted by | Civilian | | Leave a comment

New Jim Clark museum will open in July 2019

We’ve been following the progress of this project for some years, and it’s nice to see it finally come to an end as the museum’s opening date is announced.

A £1.6m museum celebrating the achievements of double Formula One world champion Jim Clark will open in the Borders this summer.

The state-of-the-art facility, which is being built in Duns, will open to the public on July 11.

The announcement was made in the week of the anniversary of his historic win at the Indianapolis 500 in 1965.

The Jim Clark Museum’s dynamic exhibition space will feature memorabilia and trophies, race cars, new image galleries and film footage, interactive displays, and technology and education zones.

In addition to the new museum, The Jim Clark Trust is developing a tourist trail around the area.

Secretary Ben Smith said: “Jim’s victory at Indianapolis in 1965 expanded his fan-base massively and we have no doubt that fans from across the world will descend on the new museum after it opens this summer.

“All the partners are working to maximise the impact of the interest in Jim and the opening of the new museum, and as part of that the trust is developing a tourist and car club trail that will provide additional interest for visitors, and also bring many car enthusiasts to the museum for many years to come.”

Jim Clark motorsport museum set to open this summer

Jim Clark Museum

Jim Clark Museum

31/05/2019 Posted by | Civilian, council, Transport | | Leave a comment

First man in Scotland convicted under new domestic abuse law

Wonder if he was a ‘Big Glasgow Hard Man’?

A man from Glasgow has become the first person to be convicted under a new Scottish domestic abuse law.

William James Murdoch admitted offences included making a series of abusive phone calls to his ex-wife and breach of the peace.

He pled guilty to offences under the Domestic Abuse (Scotland) Act and was sentenced on Wednesday.

The act, passed by Holyrood in January last year, came into effect across the country last month.

The “groundbreaking legislation” criminalises psychological domestic abuse and coercive and controlling behaviour, in addition to covering physical abuse.

Murdoch, 43, was sentenced at Glasgow Sheriff Court to a community payback order with 14 months’ supervision and 200 hours of unpaid work.

He was also made the subject of a two-year non-harassment order.

Det Supt Gordon McCreadie, Police Scotland’s national lead for domestic abuse, said the conviction was a “positive start” towards tackling domestic abuse.

First man in Scotland convicted under new domestic abuse law

Domestic Violence

31/05/2019 Posted by | Civilian | | Leave a comment

The tanker at the end of the road

Nothing in particular.

I just looked down a side street in Ayr, and this nice view presented itself, so got grabbed.

Ayr Tanker


31/05/2019 Posted by | Civilian, Maritime, photography, Transport | , | Leave a comment

Probably yet another mystery

I’ve mentioned the number of times I’ve seen police, and other emergency services, passing and/or gathering in places I’ve passed, and how it looks notable, but when I get home and check the local news…

Nothing – ever!

It happened again last night, but at least it caused a queue and stopped the bus long enough for me get pics to prove it.

As usual, when I got home and checked the various local news feeds – nothing, not a word about anything that called at least two police units, a paramedic, and an ambulance under blues and twos.

Ah well – maybe next time.

Tollcross Road Incident

Tollcross Road Incident

Update (Not)

For a brief moment I thought I’d beaten the usual ‘mystery’ and this would not be open ended, but not so.

I spotted two different headlines a few hours later, apparently different, but ultimately related to the same incident. This had taken place not very far away, but was completely unrelated when reviewed.

Officer suffers life-changing injuries after being hit by car

Man arrested after policeman hit by car in Glasgow

31/05/2019 Posted by | Civilian, photography | , , , | Leave a comment

Scottish souvenir is

I was passing a ‘Pound Shop’ (NOT one of the big chains) in Ayr High Street when I spotted something odd in the window it had set up with Scottish souvenirs.

While I’m not likely to buy a Scottish souvenir, I do like to keep an eye on what’s on offer, to see if it’s a continuation of the  traditional Scottish, tartan-tinted novelties that have been around for decades, or something created more recently.

This one clearly comes under the ‘more recent’ category, and caught my eye because (I assume) it’s a ‘Scottish’ photo-frame – with a picture of an elegant Asian girl filling the frame.

Not even wearing a tartan mini skirt!

I’m almost tempted to say it’s not appropriate, but if you live around the area of Glasgow University… you could be forgiven for thinking Scots all looked Asian.

Scottish Souvenir

Scottish Souvenir

31/05/2019 Posted by | Civilian, photography | , , | Leave a comment

Stranded cat? Leave it alone, and it will come home

Fortunately, a cat story with a happy ending.

Began with Bridge cat stuck for six days still stranded after rescue fails

In fact, I’d class this outcome as funny.

Reason being I come from a long line of Glasgow cat owners, who were (in the ‘old days’ at least) very practical.

One piece of advice from those days was not to fuss over a cat that had got itself into some sort of precarious scenario.

The logic was that a crowd of people gathering around it, poking and prodding, and doing various things to ‘persuade’ it to leave that scenario was more likely to get it entrenched, rather than entice it.

This story seems to reinforce that old view…

A cat which was stuck on a bridge for six days wandered home hours after a £5,000 rescue mission was abandoned.

Hatty, a five-year-old Maine Coon-Serengeti cross, had been perched on a ledge of the Royal Albert Bridge, which connects Plymouth, in Devon, and Saltash, in Cornwall for almost a week.

Fire crews and the RSPCA rushed out to rescue her and Network Rail were even making arrangements to close the rail line over the bridge, known locally as the Brunel Bridge.

One rescuer scaled to the top and attempted to coax the feline out with cat treats. Onlookers tried to send food up with catapults.

But Hatty would not be budged and was last seen peering out from behind a crevice under the famous bridge.

Fire crews eventually called off the rescue – which costs the taxpayer about £500 an hour – at 5pm on Wednesday.

However, they vowed to return the next day.

Just a few hours after everyone left, Hatty clambered down and suddenly appeared at home – with evidence she had eaten a seagull to stave off the hunger.

Cat ‘stranded’ on bridge for six days walks home after £5k rescue fails

Made me think of…

A cat, and a bridge:

High Cat

High Cat

30/05/2019 Posted by | Civilian | , , | Leave a comment

Sad update as cat dies from wounds reported earlier

Unfortunately we noted that the cat which we noted was deliberately wounded in an attack a few days ago has died of those wounds.

A pet cat who was shot in the stomach with an air gun from close range has died.

Rhea underwent emergency surgery after being found with severe abdomen injuries near her home in Falkirk.

STV News told last week how she was fighting for her life after part of her gut was removed.

However, the Scottish SPCA confirmed on Wednesday that, despite the treatment, Rhea had died.

Owner Alan Smith said his family – whose other cat Oreo was shot by an air rifle last year – has been left “devastated”.

He said: “There are no words that can or will help. Gutted does not cover how we feel.

“We have lost faith in humanity after losing Rhea in such a horrific way.

“She did not deserve this, the pain and suffering she must have gone through before her death would have been unbearable, it breaks my heart.

“The person responsible must be brought to justice before they strike again. Someone out there knows something. Our pet died for absolutely no reason.

“The amount of distress and upset it has caused my wife and I is immeasurable.

“This will be with us for the rest of our lives, losing our baby girl in this way.”

The Smiths believe Rhea was deliberately targeted following the previous attack on Oreo.

Owners devastated after cat killed in ‘targeted’ shooting

I can’t really add anything to this, other than a reminder that this sort of person NEEDS to be caught, as studies continue to warn that they are likely to be working their way up, starting with defenceless animals, then moving on to children.

30/05/2019 Posted by | Appeal, Civilian | , | Leave a comment

Back street shutter mural

Just a little unexpected find in a back street (Haylynn) off Dumbarton Road.

I’m sure whatever the words/acronym say mean something – to somebody.

It’s almost a pity that ‘social exclusion’ activists aren’t as ready to haul the people who make stuff like this into court as they are organisations like social services and councils.

Maybe they could force a new law requiring graffiti artists to include plaques mounted beside their works, listing all the abbreviations and acronyms for the rest of us 🙂

With massive fines and jail time if they didn’t.

Haylynn Street shutter mural

Haylynn Street shutter mural

30/05/2019 Posted by | Civilian, photography | | Leave a comment

Just managed to grab Ayrshire Gas

I don’t know why I pass over the many businesses that have owners who take the time (and expense) to have their vehicles registered with private or personalised registration numbers.

Possibly I let them pass as they can be repetitive if a fleet carries marks which contain identical strings of characters, so once you’ve seen one, you have, in a sense, seen them all.

Probably not the case with this catch seen in Ayr.

I barely had time to catch it as we were rolling around a roundabout and I spotted it coming – I almost missed it entirely as I was trying to work how Mario related to gas-fitting. Still don’t really get it, and the number plate is a MUCH better option.

Ayrshire Gas Van [AY18 GAS]

Ayrshire Gas Van [AY18 GAS]

Some vans may not have personalised registrations, but it seems that they can still be made ‘interesting’ with a little modification.

2015 Ford Transit [EN15 TWA]

2015 Ford Transit [EN15 TWA]

While it may not be the registration, it’s close, and falls into the same ‘class’ as the above.

Wonder if the company is considering a name change?

IVECO oops

IVECO oops


29/05/2019 Posted by | photography, Transport | , , | Leave a comment

The original Falls of Clyde from 200 years ago

I mentioned the ‘Falls of Clyde’ recently, when I heard that it was an old ship suffering similar problems to the City of Adelaide (aka The Carrick if you are from Glasgow), and was up for auction as the harbour where the remains are berthed had decided the rot was setting in and it could sink, and become a hazard.

Last alert I was passed reported that the ship (the last surviving iron-hulled, four-masted, full-rigged ship), was NOT sold, and since supporters who are trying to save the remains have, so far, failed to attract enough funding to enable a rescue, the future of this significant, but apparently largely unwanted artefact is highly uncertain.

The story reminded ,e of a painting hanging in Kelvingrove, showing the falls looking a little different to what might be seen today.

As noted in an earlier post, since the Bonnington hydroelectric power station arrived – the first such station built in Scotland, in 1927, and rated around 11 MW – the falls are generally little more than a trickle, so you have to find out when the station is going to be offline for maintenance, or when the open days are for the falls, since those are the only time the falls can be seen in anything like full flow.

But the difference I really had in mind was the appearance of the surrounding area, where the painting shows there were once building to be seen.

Sadly, these are all gone, but if you go exploring, you can still find remains of Bonnington Pavilion.

This two-storied square structure had its main façade towards the first Bonnington House (demolished). Said to have been built for Sir James Carmichael, it has the monogram IC and the date 1708 carved within.

In its time it served as a hunting tower, tea room, and a viewing platform for the surrounding landscape and falls. It is described as one of the earliest such structures in British and Continental architecture.

The pavilion is now just a floorless ruin with only its four walls and a stone fire surround remaining.

By Alexander Nasmyth (1758–1840), oil on canvas.

Like many of the painting on show in Kelvingrove, they can be hard to photograph due to reflections from the gallery lighting behind, which catches the glossy varnish. Standing off axis doesn’t really help – it may avoid some of the reflections, but then causes the image to have a distorted perspective.

The building which can be seen in the painting is NOT the pavilion, which (if I am interpreting the area correctly) is a short climb up the hill to the left of the scene.

Nasmyth Falls of Clyde Painting

Nasmyth Falls of Clyde Painting

29/05/2019 Posted by | Civilian | , , , , | Leave a comment

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