Secret Scotland

If it's secret, and in Scotland…

Toxic Trump infection destroys anything it touches

The world’s biggest liar is never going to change.

Having ruined the lives and victimised residents of Menie while his enforcers ensured his unwanted golf course was inflicted on the area back in 2008, it seems that all the promises about not damaging the environment there were all lies.

Only 12 seconds into this video, the lies begin to pour from Trump’s mouth with:

And it’s going to be done environmentally perfect“…

Although the area was assigned the status of a SSSI (site of special scientific interest) and should have been protected, Trump’s assurances (and one cannot doubt his money) meant that this status was set aside, and the golf course was allowed.

Now, it has been reported that a review is to be carried out into the special scientific status of the area as the Menie Estate course is said to have caused habitat loss for wildlife and damage to the sand dune system.

Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH) is looking into the scale of the impact to decide if all or parts of the site should lose the status:

An SNH spokesman said: “As expected, there are areas where there has been some permanent habitat loss – for example, where tracks, tees, fairways and greens have been constructed.

“There have been other habitat changes where, for example, mobile sand dunes have been stabilised through the planting of marram grass.

“Part of our review will be to assess the significance and scale of this loss and damage.”

Jonny Hughes, chief executive of the Scottish Wildlife Trust, said: “The Scottish Wildlife Trust was strongly opposed to the Trump development.

“Our main objection was that there would be severe and irreversible damage to around 40% of the Foveran Links SSSI, one of the best sand dune systems of its type in north-western Europe.

“Therefore, it would be unsurprising if the SSSI status is removed.”

“I don’t think it matters to us”

Trump doesn’t care, since it was decided that the economic impact of the development was considered more important than environmental concerns after a public local inquiry was carried out.

Trump International Golf Links Scotland executive vice-president Sarah Malone said: “I don’t think it matters to us.

“It may matter to other people and we’ll be comfortable with whatever the option and the decision on that is. We bought the site because of these extraordinary sand dunes. Why would we do anything to damage them?

“The fact of the matter is, contrary to what is propagated by a very small group of people, our environmental approach was first class.”

Via Trump golf course ‘forced animals from their homes’

More details about Trump’s sham concern are given here: Trump golf course dunes’ special status ‘to be reviewed’

We should probably consider ourselves lucky he was only able to ruin a few sand dunes in Scotland.

As SCROTUS, he’s been able to ruin much of the US in the eyes of the rest of the World.

Meanwhile, as winter arrives in Scotland

Trumps Heart

Trumps Heart

See more like that at: Scotland against Trump

And, echoing the opening words of the video above: Peeing off at “The World’s Greatest Golf Course”


November 12, 2017 Posted by | Civilian, council, Lost | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

There goes the old Baillieston Police Station

It’s been a while since the old Police Station in Baillieston was deserted in favour of the new premises a few streets away.

Since then, it’s been sealed up and had various for sale notices and dates set, but none seem to have attracted any takers.

No great surprise given the little old building that has lain derelict for years, home to many pigeons, and similarly offered under various terms, even an auction attempt if my memory is reasonably functional.

It looks as if they’ve given up on the old building.

As usual, taking advantage of my absence from this route for a few weeks, first time I get back, and there’s the fencing and warning signs up to warn of the demolition that is set to take place.

I just had to grab this shot with the pocket camera – as the wind and rain arrived last night – the chances of passing in daylight are slim to nil before this building disappears.

I wonder what it’s like inside, in terms of conversion to flats, possibly too much trouble, due to its structure and layout.

There don’t seem to be any historic records for the building either, and I only got as far as a few feet inside the front door (once), and couldn’t really see much due to the way the front desk was arranged.

Old Baillieston Police Station Going

Old Baillieston Police Station Going

Note that the cones’n’stuff towards the right are unrelated to this work, and nearby signs indicate they are related to work on the local sewer.

Baillieston was choked up by similar traffic control for some weeks recently, as the main street was excavated for some major sewer works, and this was only completed and cleared away a few weeks ago, freeing up the road.

Looks as if somebody might have made a slightly major ‘oopsie’ if they are having to dig it up already.

November 9, 2017 Posted by | Civilian, Lost, photography | , , | 2 Comments

Schipka Pass is effectively gone, but…

I’ve no idea why, but I NEVER visited, or was even taken into Glasgow’s once famous (I suppose it still is, since it is still well remembered by many) Schipka Pass (however spelt) at any time in my life. This despite visiting The Barras many many times, and being taken (as a child) to the many auction halls and similar venues that once existed along the Trongate and maybe even into Argyle Street. They were lost long ago, something that still makes me glum as I had always imagined making the same trips for myself, when I ‘grew up’, but their disappearance robbed me of that option, something that still irritates me to this day.

As for Schipka Pass, by the time it occurred to me that it was missing from my ‘Glasgow Experiences’, a look at the place showed that whatever it had been, it was then nothing more than closed doors – deserted other than for the humorous signs it latterly gained fame for.

I really don’t know much about it, but if you look up the name online, you can find out more about it and its past from people who took the time to record their memories. Although largely derelict, it was there until 2011, when it was razed after being set on fire, probably by vandals. But being Glasgow, it’s traditional to call such places an “embarrassment to the council and a prime site which was destroyed by a mysterious fire, so releasing it for development”.

Frankly, there’s not much development going there, that ‘council fire’ story is getting just a little bit tired (I’ve been listening to people parrot it for years now), and the site was not developed, at least not as shops or flats, but as a small park, Barrowland Park.

So, why did I say “but…” in this post’s title.

While I never took any pics (not digital, but I might have something  hidden away on film) of the place as it was, I did take some of the park being created on the cleared site, and discovered something interesting when I looked at the detail.

(You can find some earlier views from before the demolition, and of the demolition, by shoving ‘shcipka’ into Flickr’s search box. Unfortunately all are behind copyright, so I can’t slip an original view in here).

First, the general view.

Schipka Pass

Schipka Pass

I have to zoom in to show the reason.

Schipka Iron Bridge

Schipka Pass Iron Bridge

Three points to note: a derelict set of old stone steps on the right, a stone arch visible just to the left of centre, and horizontal a row of circles visible across the centre of the image.

While I can’t say much about the first two, I did identify the third.

It’s the ironwork of the Schipka Pass Bridge holding up that part of London Road.

The arch below would lead into the tunnel that runs beneath London Road, and onto the site of the long gone train station at Glasgow Cross.

Next, just some fun from another pic of the same area.

Incidentally, those familiar with this scene will know this pic was taken BEFORE the mural with the two Tennent’s boozers was added to the painted side wall with the door.

Schipka Pass Barrowland Park Works

Schipka Pass Barrowland Park Works

Again, I need to zoom in to get to the detail.

Pub Sign

Pub Sign

Two points to note:

Not surprisingly, missing the apostrophe as usual.

The real oopsie – no ‘G’, not even a paint shadow show it was even ever there, on the end of ‘MORNIN’.

A few weeks later (still 2015), all the work is done, and the area is cleared.

Barrowland Park Schipka Bridge

Barrowland Park Schipka Bridge


We now have a clear view of that hidden bridge.

Schipka Bridge 2017

Schipka Bridge 2017

I’m afraid there’s little or nothing to see behind that grille though. B&W archive pics from the 1960s look like the area behind was bricked up, but a look today reveals a grille, so it might have been opened up again at some time, presumably for ventilation.

Of course, there’s an abandoned half bottle there.

Behind The Grille

Behind The Grille

I found a pic taken from the bridge back in 2015, looking towards the Gallowgate with a few that would have been impossible to see when the original buildings were standing.

Schipka Pass Impossible View

Schipka Pass Impossible View

Another two points worthy of note…

In 2017, that same sign with the missing ‘G’ STILL appears to adorn the same spot on the wall.

And these are the later boozers referred to above, on the pub wall.

Mackinnon's Boozers

Mackinnon’s Boozers

I’ve even collected the originals, as they appear on the Tennent’s brewery wall in Duke Street:

Original Tennant's Boozers

Original Tennent’s Boozers

November 7, 2017 Posted by | Civilian, Lost, photography | , | Leave a comment

Referred to as Glasgow Cat Cafe – it’s not in Glasgow!

(Before anyone gets catty, be clear I am SLATING rubbish media coverage and PUBLICISING the café correctly).

You may have noticed a small series of articles that ran in the media, some time around June of 2017, first publicising the imminent arrival of a Cat Cafe in Glasgow, then making a big issue out of revealing its location in the city centre.

That same source MAY have produced subsequent updates, but they did not come up when I searched for info last week – all I got were the original articles from earlier in the year.

I happened to be in the Merchant City area recently, and recalled the news of the cat café, although I had forgotten the address. The Merchant City area is not that big, and I did recall that the word ‘Trongate’ had featured in the stories. However, although I walked all of the relevant area… no café to be seen.

Since I had to go back a few days later, I did a quick search for those articles, and found that it was located at 2 Trongate – an abandoned former bank, easy to find under the shadow of the Tron Steeple, so off I went.

Here’s what I found.

2 Trongate

2 Trongate

2 Trongate

2 Trongate

Strange name for a Cat Café – ‘wbf TO LET’.

(And another set of pics that show Glasgow’s intrusive ‘pole problem’!)


I had a quick search around for some back story to this, it would have been nice to know what happened – but it seems the media lost interest, and nobody else seems to have bothered.

While this would have been a nice location (for me, as this is where I tend to arrive in Glasgow city centre), I can be pretty sure I won’t be seeing the actual Cat Café as finally delivered, IT’S IN CLYDEBANK!

I guess that still counts as Glasgow – Greater Glasgow that is (since that boundary includes Clydebank), but the café has not updated its own web site, still (at the end of October 2017) showing…

Glasgow’s first cat cafe, in a city centre location

Not for all the tea in China, could we even resist launching a café celebrating our huge love of cats, and a nice, fresh brew! Cats (猫). Tea (茶). You’ll also be able to enjoy plenty of other drinks, plus tasty food — including vegetarian and vegan. Purrple Cat Café is opening its doors late 2017, as the ultimate place to meet and relax with (feline) friends.

See the source for Purrple Cat Café.

Pretty sure some unidentifiable back street in Clydebank is not “a city centre location“.

Try finding this online:

9B Kilbowie Court
Clydebank, West Dumbartonshire
G81 3AJ

While I can’t really go there, I also can’t find Kilbowie Court on the maps or in Street View. I think the problem is that the location on the map is fixed by the postcode, and that only identified a mail delivery area, not the actual location. The markers on some maps look like someone was playing darts with them. Also, assuming Kilbowie Court lies somewhere off Kilbowie Road… that’s a LONG road to search along.

(Anybody wants to send more specific details or pics, I’ll be happy to do another post that nails the place down, and show what it looks like so it can be spotted.)

I DID try wandering around Street View, but the street pics are 2016 at best just now, and much is dated 2012, so no chance of spotting something new in 2017.


October 29, 2017 Posted by | Civilian, Lost, photography | , , | 2 Comments

No chance of infection in Tollcross Park, just a spot of fungus

Funny how it’s possible to wander around a place and completely miss something in plain sight.

I’d never noticed this old drinking fountain before, yet it lies near at least one path within the park.

I understand most, if not all, of these fountains have been killed off for fear of their being a potential source of infection, and sharing nasty diseases between users. At one time, they were numerous.

As can be seen, it has not only been disabled, but also smashed. Whether the latter is down to the park, or vandals, is unclear. Regardless, nobody’s going to be using this one.

Then again, it may have been a cunning plan by the scurrilous vendors of one of today’s greatest scandals – BOTTLED WATER – as they systematically destroyed all free sources of water to boost their criminal sales. But, that’s another story.

Tollcross Drinking Fountain Wrecked

Tollcross Drinking Fountain Wrecked

A wander around the remains revealed a fortunate survivor of this particular wrecking effort, including discovery of full details of the manufacturer.

Tollcross Drinking Fountain Detail

Tollcross Drinking Fountain Detail

One day, I’ll not only ready up on the definition of the difference between mushrooms and toadstools… I’ll also REMEMBER it!

So just have this bonus pic taken nearby, and we’ll settle for ‘fungus’ to save time.

Tollcross Park Tree Fungus

Tollcross Park Tree Fungus


Let’s not miss a chance to embarrass those in charge of this mess…

Which didn’t get the benefit of a SINGLE PENNY from the sham fiasco of the LASTING LEGACY of the 2014 GLASGOW COMMONWEALTH SHAMES.

Tollcross Winter Gardens January 2017

Tollcross Winter Gardens January 2017

October 19, 2017 Posted by | Civilian, Lost, photography | , , , | Leave a comment

Whitevale 2015 and Whitevale 2017

It’s been a while since my wanderings took me along that part of the Gallowgate that passes the remains of the old Whitevale Baths building.

By coincidence, I noticed I had passed the same spot almost exactly two years ago to the day, and taken a pic of the demolition of the high flats in the background coming to an end. Although I collected quite a few pics back then, I’m afraid I never got around to using any of them, but the ‘Top Down’ demolition process was interesting to watch. I have little doubt that Fred Dibnah would have been pleased, ad he didn’t see, to be too impressed by the dynamite men, and was happier to start at the top with his hammer and chisel, working his way to the ground.

However, it’s not really the flats that interested me on this occasion, but the clearance that has taken place on the former baths’ site in the foreground.

I always find this area slightly alarming (as regard my age and the fact that I still appear to be alive), as I can remember when the area in the foreground (the grassy bit between the footpath and the baths) was developed as a small row of flats with parking for the residents in the courtyard behind. Also, although not visible in either of these pics, there was also a small area of housing development built on the land to the left, bounded by the Bellgrove Hotel.

I find it hard to believe that BOTH have been razed. NEITHER was ‘old’ in terms of building life, and I wonder WHY they were vanished.

I would probably not have noticed this disappearance but for the fact that the bus I travelled on stopped in front of the small flats I mentioned, and I had noticed that the owner of a unique Classic car lived there, and their example of that car was one of only a handful that then remained on the road in Scotland. By the time I was old enough not be ‘Some daft kid’, the flats had gone, so I never even got the chance to talk to the owner.

The marque concerned was bankrupted in the early 1960s, but was reborn a couple of years ago – I might do a post about it one day, as it is succeeding in re-establishing itself.

Whitevale 2015-2017

Whitevale 2015-2017

I took this façade pic some time ago, but never used it – it was horribly skewed and distorted. I must have moved before the shutter fired, or just got it wrong.

But I’ve began to get the hang of perspective correction, so did a quick fix, and now it’s presentable.

As always… nice coat of arms

Whitevale Baths

Whitevale Baths

October 16, 2017 Posted by | Civilian, Lost, photography | , , | Leave a comment

Sheldon – another missing cat from long ago

Hunter Street is not (for me at least) a Glasgow street name that rolls off the tongue with any sort of immediate familiarity.

In fact, most days I would have to go find it on a map (which I had to in order to work out where I saw this old missing cat poster).

I’ve no idea how old this one was when I first saw it, unfortunately the rain had got at, despite it being firmly attached with duct tape – it might still be there!

Spread the word…

DATING these posters helps.

To be FAIR – this one does carry the date (9 September), but I’ve no idea if that refers to the year I spotted it,  as I didn’t spot it in September, but some time later, and think the original year was 2015.

It’s interesting to note that most of those I’ve seen recently, and included here, have mostly carried a date to show when the cat went missing, so the idea seems to be catching on.

Sheldon went missing on the old railway in the area of Calton/Bridgeton – I wonder if he was found?

Missing Cat Sheldon

Missing Cat Sheldon

Tripped over the same poster a little later.

Missing Cat Sheldon

Missing Cat Sheldon

October 13, 2017 Posted by | Lost, photography | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Long lost cat (Parkhead)

Filing away some recent pics (the lost cat posters), I came across an old one and since I’m on a lost cat poster roll, guess I should mention it.

I didn’t get around to using it after noticing it was dated – and the date was ONE YEAR earlier than the day I noticed the poster and tool a pic when I passed it. This was on Springfield Road, near the houses that had been built there recently (recognisable behind the pic of the cat).

The cat was lost for a year (since July 2015), but the poster and the tape looked brand new in July 2016 when I took the pic.

Coming across the pic again (I’d forgotten all about it) more than a year later, I guess this one was not found.

Long Lost Parkhead Cat

Long Lost Parkhead Cat

October 12, 2017 Posted by | Appeal, Lost, photography | , , | Leave a comment

Lost cat – Royal (Bengal) – Glasgow city centre

After yesterday’s find of Animal Search UK while in Tollcross…

Today we have another organisation with a similar online presence, spotted first in The Barras area, then in St Andrews Square:

But differing significantly in coverage, this one is international, as opposed the UK coverage of the previous group… is a FREE international geographical Lost, Stolen and Found pet reporting and alerting site.

Significantly, both of these groups address a problem I highlighted on the home-made posters seen, specifically, the inclusion of a date to give anyone noting them an idea of whether or not the poster is new or old.

Specific page for this Lost Cat

Lost Cat Glasgow City

Lost Cat Glasgow City – on a Barras notice board


Lost Cat Glasgow City

St Andrews Square Lamppost

Meanwhile, on Glasgow Green

I hadn’t realised this was the same cat, until I saw the posters together!

Sadly, it shows what a bit of bad Scottish weather can do to a DIY poster in next to no time at all.

The following pics were taken on the 6th, and since the cat only went missing on the 5th, show how quickly some heavy wind and rain can do damage.

At least this one has the cat’s name included, ‘Royal’.

Lost Cat Glasgow City

Lost Cat Glasgow City

Lost Cat Glasgow City

Lost Cat Glasgow City

October 10, 2017 Posted by | Lost | , , , | Leave a comment

Geri – missing in G32 since July 2017

I seem to have ‘collected’ quite a few missing cat (posters) recently, but I think most of them are a little old, and are either being spotted as I wander around places I haven’t managed to get to for a while or, like the one below, seem to be repeated appeals.

It’s only a couple of days since I used this gate at Tollcross Park, and I don’t think even I am dozy enough to have missed this one, and I saw it right away yesterday.

It’s fresh and clean. With the recent rain and wind, I doubt it would have been so clean when spotted, hence the assumption it’s a repeat.

The web site address is not too obvious (lots of mention for good old Facecrook though) so this is Animal Search UK which is associated with Cats Protection:

See also Cats Protection

I’ll need to dig through recent pics, and do posts for others.

Geri Missing Cat Tollcross

Geri Missing Cat Tollcross

October 9, 2017 Posted by | Appeal, Lost, photography | , , , | Leave a comment

Anybody left that remembers RME Surplus in Stockwell Street?

I took these pics some time ago, after spotting the shop at 143 Stockwell Street was empty.

Today (2017), it is once again occupied by some wedding-related business, as it seems to have been at various times over more recent years, and probably down the presence of other wedding related shops nearby.

But I’m thinking back to this shop’s past, when it was RME Surplus, or Radio Mechanical Electrical Surplus (and rather more interesting than wedding stuff).

I don’t have any pics of the place from its day, I was probably too ickle and it would have been before I was wandering around with cameras.

If anyone does have any pics of the shop in its prime, and they’re willing to share, it would be great to hear from you.

It was an Aladdin’s cave for anyone interested in electronics, and while it sold plenty of new goodies, for a time, it was stocked with a lot of surplus junk (in the complimentary sense) which came from old war stock, some of which was useful, while the rest was just… interesting. It’s a shame it not still there, as the goodies it had would be coveted by collectors today.

Oddly, I ended up working with one of the suppliers that (later) supplied new components for RME to re-sell. Later, I was away from Glasgow for some time, and it was only on my return I decided to wander down for a look – and was both shocked and surprised to see it had gone.

My favourite buy (while still at school) was a miniature Russian radio, handy for use in boring classes. It was smaller than a match box, and offered both long and medium wave operation. Sad to say it was lost many years ago – unfortunately the earphone was permanently attached (to save space), and when the lead eventually fractured internally, proved to be irreparable. I’m not sure what it was made of, or how it was connected to the hybrid LSI I found inside when I cracked the case, but it seemed to be made from conductive plastic and could not be joined, nor could I find any means of making contact with the substrate.

At least the shop building is still there, and I can look at it and remember it whenever I pass.

Glasgow’s other electronic emporium of the day, Bothwell Electric down Jamaica Street, not only moved (to Sauchiehall Street), but the original building was razed. My ever-lasting memory of this one (being on a pocket-money budget) was that it was damned expensive, with prices that made it worth buying most electronic components from down south, by mail order. Bothwell never really survived the move to Sauchiehall Street, and tried to survive by changing what it sold (disco and similar stuff as I recall, I may be wrong as I stopped looking), but it didn’t last.

I’d appeal for pics, but I’m pretty sure that the chances of turning up pics of that old place are even less likely than for RME.

Stockwell Street Former RME Shop

Stockwell Street Former RME Shop

Wider view.

Stockwell Street Former RME Shop

Stockwell Street Former RME Shop

October 3, 2017 Posted by | Civilian, Lost, photography | , , , | Leave a comment

%d bloggers like this: