Secret Scotland

If it's secret, and in Scotland…

Athlete’s Village charger

I have to admit that this is an old pic, although if I had taken it yesterday the scene wouldn’t have looked much different.

I had been hanging on in hope of seeing it in use during one of my wanderings past the spot, but no luck.

Maybe one day.

And, yes, it IS live.

Quite different from the one they put in the car park of the big shed across the road.

Athlete's Village EV Charger

Athlete’s Village EV Charger

Whether it’s ever been used?

Athlete's Village EV Charging Station02

Athlete’s Village EV Charging Station



Nov 13, 2018 Posted by | photography, Transport | , | 2 Comments

Not Taggart so no body

This was almost disappointing, as I came along one of the relatively new paths being complete along the side of the River Clyde, somewhere near Shieldhall and Dalmarnock.

Having seen far too much Taggart in the past, when I saw somebody struggling with a bundle at the side of the river, there was only one thought – “There’s been a murder!

Too far away to see any detail, the long lens had to come out, and reality set in.

It had just been a guy out fishing, and tidying up his backpack and goodies before he settled down for the day.

Fishing Near Shieldhall And Dalmarnock

Fishing Near Shieldhall And Dalmarnock

Aug 20, 2018 Posted by | Civilian, photography | , , | Leave a comment

Baltic Street update (still good)

Last time I wandered around Dalmarnock, I was a little glum to see that a little garage might have closed – or at least never seemed to be open whenever I was there.

There goes Dalmarnock

There’s better news after the most recent bit of wandering, and I can say it is still on the go.

And there’s a decent number of cars scattered around that are being worked on. Nice.

Now that Google has expanded its historic imagery, I can also add that the sign has been up there, just the same, since at least 2009.

One day, I’ll work up the courage to pop my head in the door and ask if they have any electricity in there.

I kid you not, the place looks as dark inside as it looks in the pic, despite that floor to roof door being open.

Baltic Street Garage

Baltic Street Garage

Jul 16, 2018 Posted by | Civilian, photography, Transport | , , | Leave a comment

Embarrassing signs are gone (but only sometimes)

HH Tyres

H&H Tyres

It’s a while since I wandered down to Dalmarnock, but this time was able to confirm the removal of some really embarrassingly shoddy signs, as noted in…

Who’s to blame? The signwriter or the customer?

They really are all gone.

H&H Tyres Signs Gone

H&H Tyres Signs Gone

That said, there’s a horrible giant sign on a nearby street, didn’t bother looking at it though.

They also plaster the area with disgusting stick-on signs, mostly on lampposts, making the area look really tatty, as does most illegal fly-posting.

But Glasgow District Council doesn’t seem to think it’s worth chasing and fining such defacers.

Perhaps the fines should be raised to match motoring related fines, so that it would be worth hauling those who place this rubbish on our city, and bring down its appearance with their tat.


Following a suggestion made after the original post about these terrible signs, I’ve been trying to get down this way earlier in the day. The suggestion being that they’re taken in at night, so only seen during the working day.

Sure enough, the ‘informer’ was RIGHT!

An early wander through the area just found a few of hem stuck in the ground during the day (this took until July to spot).

H&H Signs Out

H&H Signs Out

Jul 15, 2018 Posted by | Civilian, council, photography, Transport | , , , | Leave a comment

Tripod cat (not)

Rummaging through some archived pics I spotted one that looked different from my recollection.

I’d toured the former athlete’s village (built for the dopey 2014 Commonwealth Games) collecting pics of the various types of housing built there, and came across a couple of cats. By then, the athletes had enjoyed being worshipped, and deserted the place, and some of the places had people living in them.

I had to look twice, as the pic appeared to show a tripod (three-legged) cat, and I was sure I’d never seen one.

Feline overlords that looked as if they owned the place, yes, but not a tripod.

Turns out that it was just an optical illusion, and the ‘missing’ leg was just perfectly hidden behind the visible one.

Still, three would be better than none – look at poor catloaf (no legs and not even a tail) on the right!

Tripod Cat And Friend

Tripod Cat And Friend

Jul 7, 2018 Posted by | photography | , | Leave a comment

There goes Dalmarnock

I was never hugely familiar with Dalmarnock, but did come to recognise quite a lot of it when I started walking there some years back.

I almost remember seeing a couple of high flats that once stood there, but saw more of them as piles of rubble coming out of a rock crusher after they were demolished.

I found a school there, closed, derelict, and also demolished shortly after I tripped over it.

There was one factory that managed to survive in Springfield Road (my company even did some work in it, but I never visited) – until the dopey 2014 Commonwealth Games had it eliminated. A pity, since it was vaguely historic and a little interesting, being nicely built in sandstone – but that didn’t save it as it stood in the way of the athlete’s village, so became a ‘Dead Man Walking’ and gave its life for the silliness.

Nearly all the sandstone tenements in the area were eliminated, only a few still stand at Dalmarnock Bridge. A few early 20th century houses that had somehow been missed in an earlier round of demolition were mopped up at the same time.

While I never saw the power station that sat next to the bridge, I did see the wall that once bordered the river, and even had jetties for coal deliveries (I think that only happened once in its life though – rail was the normal route. But, like the power station, that vanished too, again thanks to  the stupid Commonwealth Games.

There was one Stoddart’s bed factory down there, but that stands long abandoned and derelict now.

Probably thanks to that larger building, some smaller industrial units have survived alongside.

But a recent wander there suggests they’ll be for the chop soon, as they were occupied, but it’s so long since I was there during working hours it looks to me as if they are now abandoned too.

I used to spy inside this body shop as I walked past, there looked to be some interesting chassis lying around, as if someone did some serious racing as their hobby. But, the last few times I passed it didn’t even look as if they had power – although it was open and they were working, there were no lights on.


I’ve no idea, but the place has been closed whenever I’ve passed recently, and the state of the old sign suggests “There’s nobody home”.

Baltic St Body Shop

Baltic St Body Shop

The sign.

Rough Sign

Rough Sign

May 10, 2018 Posted by | Civilian, photography | , , | Leave a comment

Who’s to blame? The signwriter or the customer?

It used to be fairly simple to find signs with mistakes – just look for the apostrophe (or lack of apostrophe) and you’d soon catch something.

However, now that neither signwriter nor customer seems to be educated, it’s so easy to do this it’s as much fun as shooting fish in a barrel (see Mythbusters for that lesson).

Probably the only problem is having to actually READ the signs to find the mistakes – at least apostrophes are easy to spot (or not).

Then here’s the added bonus of tattooists and their victims nowadays, doomed to live with their joint mistakes (with ‘NO RAGRETS‘), or having to endure laser tattoo removal to get rid of their gems. Not forgetting the option of a huge inky ‘cover up tattoo’ to hide it instead.

I couldn’t pass this one up, seen on a long walk far from home.

I’ll let you guess what ‘BRINING SAFETY TO THE ROAD’ means, but there were plenty of signs making the same offer.

The good news is that you don’t have to go to China (punch in that prominent URL – relax, at the moment at least, it’s just a 404 error).



Loads of them, double-sided, all the same.

HH Tyres


It would bring tears to a quality manager or proofreader’s eyes.


I just passed this spot a few days ago – ALL the signs are GONE!

Including others of a different design erected further along the road.

Nope, nothing to do with me – the pics were taken a while ago, and this post wasn’t published until AFTER the signs had all gone.

I’m no expert in this particular scenario, but they look vaguely illegal, stuck in the ground on land not belonging to the business, and probably without asking the owners consent, or even paying for the land use.

Another update

Following the suggestion below, in the Comments, we’ve been trying to watch this spot, and found that the signs were not actually gone – just taken in at night.

Embarrassing signs are gone (but only sometimes)


May 1, 2018 Posted by | Civilian, photography, Transport | , , , | 2 Comments

The Legacy Hub at night

This is unusual. Evidence of life here.

I generally walk past this – The Legacy Hub – during daylight hours, but must do so on the wrong days as it always seems to be closed and deserted. Which is odd, given it houses the area’s Medical Centre.

While that appears to be open (the section to the right), I still don’t see anybody using the seated area to the left, signed as a café.

I’ve read that this smaller building/extension was part of a deal done to be allowed to parachute the big empty Emirate Arena that lies behind. I guess the name is a sop to the once often repeated ‘Lasting Legacy’ promised to residents in the wake of the silly 2014 Commonwealth Games.

Legacy Hub Night

Legacy Hub Night

Apart from taking this shot just to see if I could (remember, I don’t use a tripod, all shots are handheld), and test a lesson.

The night shot part is interesting in this case, as the sky, almost black when the pic was taken, is almost a match for the façade.

I did knock back the brightness in the café area, as it was so bright it almost blew out the internal detail.

The lesson?

Normally I insist on catching whole buildings, and avoiding cut-off roofs, corners, or ends.

That usually means having to correct the perspective later, as the camera has to be tilted.

This time, I tried to avoid my natural instinct and hold the camera level (almost – that missing upper vertex was killing me).

Well, what do you know? It works, and no perspective post-processing needed.

I left in a little converging perspective.

I see many pics that have had ALL the perspective edited out, and have perfectly vertical building edges.

I think these look horribly unnatural, as the human eye is used to seeing buildings with at least some perspective, and all natural views (what you see for real with your eyes) demonstrate converging perspective as verticals lead up to a natural vanishing point.

Dec 14, 2017 Posted by | Civilian, photography | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Poles in Dalmarnock beat stars in Glasgow

Unfortunately for their fans, although I’ve recently come across quite a few shared photos and stories of Glasgow streets being converted to American streets to allow filming of their next blockbuster, I couldn’t care less about most people introduced to me as ‘celebrities’ nowadays, so I can’t tell you the ‘Who, What, or Where’ behind this.

But the media’s noses were stuck to their backsides, so I’m sure the details will be easy enough to find in online news articles.

Although I’ve never actively followed up this thought, I’ve always wanted to go catch some pics of the Polish community I’m immersed in within the east end of Glasgow.

I did start this a few years ago, collecting a number of Polish shops that had been open in the east end for some time, but I decided I had left it too late, as the number was growing and I realised I was finding many more than even I had expected, and that even more were opening as I covered the area. Since I knew I’d be missing many (and new ones as they opened) I gave this up as I’d wanted to catch most of them, but realised it wasn’t going to be possible, at least not without more effort than it was worth (I don’t get paid enough).

I seldom walk along the street without hearing conversations in Polish, and when I’m in any of the Lidl stores I can reach, it’s rare to overhear a conversation in English – you may even recall a news article that broke a few months ago, where Lidl staff were ordered NOT to speak in Polish (which I think was ridiculous – I never spotted a follow-up, and still wonder if that was even legal).

Lest anyone think this is somehow racist, or wants to try to twist this observation (and post) into some sort of racist issue (this has happened in the past, when one clown kept accusing me of all sorts of fantasies they made up), nothing could be further from my mind. For what it’s worth (not a lot since I’m 100% Glasgow born and bred), I’ve discovered I’m Polish, but thanks to that nice Mr Stalin and his postwar victimisation of Poles who joined and fought with the Allies, it seems my family went into hiding to avoid having all they owned being seized at best, or being shot at worst.

I found I should really have been able to speak Polish and German (as well as Glaswegian), but this never happened as it might have given ‘us’ away.

I’d love to be able to listen in on all those conversations. (Yes, I’m sneaky that way).

Rather than see America in Glasgow, I prefer to see Poles (or poles even), or Poland in Dalmarnock, where there are sometimes quite a few ‘imported’ foreign registered vehicles to be found on the streets, and you have to look twice, to make sure you have not been teleported while not looking.

Poles In Dalmarnock

Poles In Dalmarnock

Nov 10, 2017 Posted by | Civilian, military, photography, Transport | , , | Leave a comment

The changing Sanmex Chemical Works building

There a really interesting and attractive building (still) standing on Dalmarnock Road, just a short way from the bridge over the river, and near the big new Tesco that opened a little while ago.

Unless somebody tells me otherwise, I’ll assume this building was (or is, since the company is still in business) the company’s offices, since the factory itself lies and extends into the land behind this building.

Having seen a photograph of the place from 1966, a number of changes are apparent:

  • The gate on the left was not present, and the wall was flush with the façade.
  • The wall on the right (actually a later building) was not present, as there was a gate there.
  • A chimney rose from the rear left of the roof.
  • A complete upper storey and pitched roof has been trimmed from the block on the right.
  • The extreme right was a matching but smaller version of that on the left.
  • The street lamp is a recent addition (there was one next to the gate on the right).
  • The dark rectangle on the left face, running the height of the building, was a large vertical SAN-MEX sign, now blank.
  • Further signs identifying the business were painted between the two storeys on the right.

While the remaining façade is reasonably attractive, the rest of the building is less so, having been rendered over the original brickwork, water has been seeping behind this over the years, and it is discoloured and damaged.

As for the chemical works behind…

Sanmex International is a perfume retailer which supplies a range of fragrances!

That rings a bell, as I think I had to visit the place once in my life, and the smell was of bathroom soap.

Sanmex Dalmarnock

Sanmex Dalmarnock

Although I knew this area had changed considerably (and I don’t mean the clearance for the 2014 Commonwealth Shames), mainly from looking at the few remains of Dalmarnock Power Station (which was only a matter of metres from this spot, but even those few relics were surgically cleansed for the Shames), I had no idea just how extensive the industrialisation of this area had been until I look at old pics of Sanmex, which naturally included the surrounding area.

It was almost saturated with works, and the tenements were buried amongst them, and the many rail tracks.

If you are interested, but have never looked up the online records and pics, it is well worth the effort.

This area has changed MASSIVELY in only a few decades.

Jun 9, 2017 Posted by | Civilian, photography | , , , | Leave a comment

Clyde rower

Not sure how I actually managed to catch this, as I was carrying the compact in my pocket.

Compact – find… find ‘ON# button… wait for Bzzz, whir, click, click, bzzz of start-up routine and self-test EVERY DAMN TIME!

Then try and frame shot with power zoom back and forth.

Not to mention having to use LCD on camera back as there is no real viewfinder.

Then wait while camera has ‘tea & biscuits’ as it sets things up in response to your plea for it to ‘TAKE THE DAMNED PICTURE’ after you press the shutter button.

Ok, in reality it does not take THAT long (except for low-light or night shots), but compared to the instant response of a dSLR, and the fact that it is ‘Always On’, the compact FEELS like it takes an eternity as it does its stuff at every power-up.

Clyde Rower Dalmarnock Rutherglen

Clyde Rower Dalmarnock Rutherglen

I believe this boatyard, across the River Clyde from the Dalmarmock Sewage Work, next the Dalmarnock railway bridge, and below Dalmarnock Road – is referred to everywhere online as the Rutherglen Boatyard, and is all that remains of the old yard founded by TB Seath.

Oddly, even historic record for the area show this Rutherglen boatyard on the spot, yet make no mention of Seath.

Seath built many boats, sailed down the Clyde and over the tidal weir to reach the sea, including the Cluthas which provided ferry services on the river.

Benmore, a 200 ft paddle steamer, was famously grounded on the weir on its deliver sailing, but was finally rocked off and set free!

It seems there is no sea access these days, closed off by various changes to the river, and a lack of dredging to maintain an adequate channel along the whole length.

May 23, 2017 Posted by | Civilian, photography, Transport | , , , , , | Leave a comment

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