Secret Scotland

If it's secret, and in Scotland…

The illegals – H18 MNH

As usual, I’m left wondering what makes it worth the risk of a £1,000 fine the day a grumpy traffic cop decides to stop this one to make their day.

I’m rubbish at interpreting the weird translations the sales people use to sell some plates, and was just shown MAR 573N, which was on a Bentley as MAR573N, and apparently reads Marston.

This one’s on a (deep breath) 2016 Mercedes-Benz GLE 350d 4Matic AMG Line, and makes no sense to me.

2016 Mercedes-Benz GLE 350d [H18 MNH]

2016 Mercedes-Benz GLE 350d [H18 MNH]

I had hopes of an explanation after spotting some extra text in the bottom centre field, but that did help, and “McLean Girls” without any sort of qualifier is, sadly, just too vague to work in an online search.

Toothpaste cheerleaders?

H18MNH McLean Girls


Here’s the Marston (it’s given under the 5) example I mentioned earlier (I don’t make stuff up).

Marston [MAR 573N]

Marston [MAR 573N]


06/03/2019 Posted by | Civilian, photography, Transport | , | Leave a comment

The illegals – C1 UME

No clues on the plate as to what might make it worth the risk of a £1,000 fine for illegal character spacing, and maybe more – for using a black screw head to alter the appearance too. All it would take is a grumpy traffic cop having a bad day.

I checked the front and rear plates to see if the spacing, and the black fixing screws were deliberate (there are white screws in the usual places, but no yellow at the rear).

I’d been hoping for a line that might have explained ‘C 1.UME’ to the casual observer, but the bottom line was blank.

I wonder how it’s supposed to be read, or what it means.

2004 Mercedes E320 CDI [C1 UME]

2004 Mercedes E320 CDI [C1 UME]

2004 Mercedes E320 CDI [C1 UME]

2004 Mercedes E320 CDI [C1 UME]

04/02/2019 Posted by | photography, Transport | , | Leave a comment

The illegals – X18 REE

I usually suggest that illegally spaced number plates might as well not be, since they’re usually not enhanced by the effort.

Mostly true, this one might almost be worth the chance of picking up the cost of an extra £1,000 on the top of the original price, if it ever attracted the maximum fine for the modification to the plate’s appearance.

At least we don’t have to sit and puzzle the meaning, as is sometimes the case.

2010 Range Rover TD [X18 REE]

2010 Range Rover TD [X18 REE]

21/01/2019 Posted by | photography, Transport | , | Leave a comment

Bumped into an old ‘friend’ – the illegals – A1 EKX

I thought this one was long gone from the area, but it looks as if I was just always around at the wrong time.

Years ago, I was impressed when somebody got themselves a Lexus Soarer to attach this plate to.

Back then, this was probably an import, and the top end versions had things like TVs fitted to the dash as standard.

Regularly seen then, both car and plate seemed to disappear (or maybe I just changed my usual wanderings).

Seen recently, the Soarer had turned into a white van, a 2013 Peugeot Boxer.

But the plate was still tweaked to make A1 EKX look as if it had an ‘L’ in it. I think it’s just careful positioning of a black screw/bolt head, but it’s still not allowed if it alters a character.

It really doesn’t need this treatment, and would look better without it.

Unfortunately, the law would see this as a modification, and it could be worth up to £1,000 in a fine if spotted by a grumpy traffic cop having a bad day.

2013 Peugeot Boxer [A1 EKX]

2013 Peugeot Boxer [A1 EKX]

14/01/2019 Posted by | photography, Transport | , | Leave a comment

The illegals – H2 TYX

I’m always left slightly puzzled when I see illegal plates where the character spacing risks a potential £1,000 fine if a grumpy Glesga polis having a bad day passes it.

I may be missing something obvious, but I can’t make anything worthwhile (not £1,000 anyway) out of H2 TYX as seen misrepresented as H2TY X on this 2007 Audi TT.

There isn’t even a ‘reveal’ offered at the bottom of the plate, which sometimes has the meaning added in small letters.

2007 Audi TT [H2 TYX]

2007 Audi TT [H2 TYX]

25/12/2018 Posted by | Civilian, photography, Transport | , | 1 Comment

The illegals – W4 NNO

It’s been a while since I included an ‘illegal’ and the collection is backing up.

So, I’ll clear this one spotted recently.

I guess W4NNO is close enough to something that matters for them to chance the potential £1,000 fine for illegal character spacing if they meet a grumpy traffic cop that doesn’t like STs (or diesels).

Ford Focus ST TDCi [W4 NNO]

Ford Focus ST TDCi [W4 NNO]

22/12/2018 Posted by | Civilian, photography, Transport | , | Leave a comment

The illegals – WA09 ELL

Another of the illegal spacings, with WA09 ELL being shown as WA09ELL, so fairly obvious.

I always think these will be a gift for the coffers if the police ever see these as an easy catch one day, and start pulling them, like the TV traffic cops do down south.

I’ve been a bit slow with this one.

While it was on a Fiat when I tripped over it a while ago, records show it’s now on a 2014 Audi.

Wonder if it was a one-time visitor in the dangerous east end, or if I might catch the upgrade if the owner dares bring their nice car here?

Well, never saw it before, so chances of seeing it again?

Fiat [WA09 ELL]

Fiat [WA09 ELL]

23/11/2018 Posted by | photography, Transport | , | Leave a comment

The illegals – D3 MLN

It took me a moment to realise this 2006 Ford Focus was actually one of the illegals, and doesn’t really seem to be worth the risk of that potential £1,000 fine for having illegal character spacing on the plate.

Quite what ‘D3M LN’ represents isn’t obvious (to me at least, and the plates themselves have no clues added.

I thought it might even have been a mistake (on the plate) but they’re same front and back.

2006 Ford Focus Front [D3 MLN]

2006 Ford Focus Front [D3 MLN]

2006 Ford Focus [D3M LN]

2006 Ford Focus [D3M LN]

Weird pics too.

Not sure if this was my own fault though, or the wet, but I couldn’t get a what I would call a proper ‘low light’ pic.

I must have hit a setting and upset if from my usual preference, as these pics were WAY slow with exposures in the order of 5 seconds.

Usually I can convince things to happen in less than a second provided the scene is under street lights, but this just stayed as a ‘dark’ shot, and had to be lifted with post-processing.

Whatever I did must have been a temporary change – I couldn’t find any setting I suspected, and the next outing provides pics as usual.

The plethora of menus and settings may be nice to have, but can be a pain. While I’d like a ‘pro’ camera as it comes with lots of knobs and extra displays, these come at a price, and I don’t just mean the cost (my eyes still start watering when I see new ones that cost as much as a decent second-hand car). They’re also considerably larger and heavier than their non-pro cousins.

21/11/2018 Posted by | photography, Transport | , , | Leave a comment

The illegals – YR11 STY

Another illegal that has me wonder what makes the potential £1,000 for illegal character spacing worth the risk if plod spots it while in a bad mood one day.

I thought this 2013 Audi A7 (sadly, a stinky TDI diesel) looked like a novelty, maybe with some reference to rust with its naughty character arrangement of ‘Y R11STY’, but a closer look showed it was the property of JOHN RUSSELL.

That has to be another win for a sharp-talking plate seller.

2013 Audi A7 TDI [YR11 STY]

2013 Audi A7 TDI [YR11 STY]

How do I know it’s John Russell’s?

Easy, I looked closer.

YR11 STY Plate

John’s Plate

13/11/2018 Posted by | photography, Transport | , | Leave a comment

The illegals R17 JWR

As far as illegal registration plates go, this one has to tick ALL the boxes!

According to the records, it’s on a 2011 Nissan Navara Tekna D/C Dci 188 – looks more like the road to me, and it’s not even properly secured either. It’s just lying there.

Illegal Plate [R17 JWR]

Illegal Plate [R17 JWR]

Where do you start?

Incorrect character font.

Incorrect character size.

Incorrect character spacing.

Incorrect colour.

Non-reflective background.

Missing obligatory supplier details.

There are probably more, but I’m just working from memory, and the last time I happened to have the regulations shoved in my face.

As they say… “An attempt was made”.

It’s probably better than those ‘kewl’ people who jam their (sometimes legal) number plates in the corner of the windscreen, or rear window, to avoid having nasty, unsightly holes drilled in their beautifully styled and extensively modified cars.


01/11/2018 Posted by | Civilian, photography, Transport | , , | Leave a comment

The illegals – DM11 LON

Be interesting to know what makes the potential £1,000 fine for incorrectly spaced characters worth the risk.

Could it be that this might look like MILLION?

If so, the owner can afford it.

Another long name for this stinky diesel 2014 BMW 6 Series Gran Coupe 3.0 640d M Sport Gran Coupe Steptronic (phew).

BMW 640D [DM11 LON]

BMW 640D [DM11 LON]

27/10/2018 Posted by | photography, Transport | , | Leave a comment

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