Secret Scotland

If it's secret, and in Scotland…

(Sir) Billy Connolly’s 75th birthday murals got some plaques

While passing the giant murals dedicated to (Sir) Billy Connolly on the occasion of his 75th, I noticed that descriptive plaques had been added nearby.

Well, to be accurate, two of them had plaques, the Old wynd mural and the Gallowgate mural were easily spotted, but when I headed along Dixon Street to look for one next to the Vetteriano mural, I wasn’t so lucky.

There didn’t seem to be one in sight, at least not anywhere obvious or convenient.

Maybe the team sent out to install it got the same abuse from the patrons of the beer garden below the mural, and decided just to go home as well.

Anyway, whatever the story with the last one (I’m blind, or it just wasn’t there when I looked) here are the two that can be found/seen.

Billy Connolly Mural Osborne Street Old Wynd

Osborne Street Old Wynd


Byrne Mural Plaque Old Wynd

Byrne Mural Plaque Old Wynd


Billy Connolly Mural Gallowgate



Maclean Mural Plaque Gallowgate

Maclean Mural Plaque Gallowgate

It’s such a shame that this mural was completed in a high gloss finish.

It can be almost impossible to see the thing on a bright sunny day (when it should be at its colourful best) as there is just so much reflected glare from the sky. Looking at it recently, during the recent sunny spell, I could barely see anything but the top third.

It really is best to go see this one on a dull day, preferably in the evening, as the sky darkens.



June 5, 2018 Posted by | photography | , , | Leave a comment

Just some Tennent’s murals

Another post inspired by the proposals to brighten the area up.

Adjacent to the Necropolis, it must surely fall within the area mentioned.

I tend not to follow the crowd, but realise that this is not always the best plan…

You have seen the “I’m a bomb disposal officer, if you see me running… FOLLOW ME!” t-shirt?

So, although I’ve passed Tennent’s Wellpark Brewery on Duke Street many times, I’ve never felt motivated to take any pics of the murals adorning the brewery wall.

But it seems to have become almost a ‘Rite of passage’ for anyone taking pics around Glasgow, so I think I should get with the program (before someone decides it’s time for them to be deleted).

I like this group because of the panicked glass making its escape from the shadowy hand.

Tennents Murals

Tennents Murals

I collected this one too.

Original Tennent's Boozers

Original Tennents Boozers


Not sure if our ‘umpteen’ beats the cat’s ‘elebenty’, or vice versa (but I think the cat just wins, just for being cuter).



March 29, 2018 Posted by | Civilian, photography | , , | Leave a comment

Newer murals at The Barras

Came across these by chance a while ago, although I had seen them in one of those ‘Mural Trail’ reviews, but had not looked at their location so didn’t realise where they were.

I’ve gone back at various times to try to find them without any vehicles obscuring parts, but have never found them clear, so have given up trying.

The only time I do find them clear – someone erects a security fence around the piece of ground to stop it being used for parking, so that’s no help towards a clear view pic.

I managed to get the pirate almost clear, so was able to distort the skewed perspective to change it into a flat clear shot, which looks  a lot better (the one car can still be seen in the bottom left corner).

Ross Street Pirate Mural

Ross Street Pirate Mural

No such luck with the other one though, so just had to take what I could get.

Ross Street King Of The Barras Mural

Ross Street King Of The Barras Mural

The missing part.

King Of The Barras

King Of The Barras

There’s more, although not part of any ‘mural trail’ it seems the nearby shops think the rear view of their building is worth a little arty effort too.

Ross Street View Of Argyle Street Shops

Ross Street View Of Argyle Street Shops

February 7, 2018 Posted by | Civilian, photography | , , | Leave a comment

50 Argyle Street – Derelict Bank of Scotland plus more murals

I hadn’t really noticed the murals concealing the ground floor of the building at 50 Argyle Street (extending around into Miller Street) before, but my recent habit of spotting them now we have a deliberate mural trail in Glasgow seems to make be notice them.

50 Argyle Street was built in 1905 and is said to follow an American style (not to mention the Glasgow Style and others) which to my eye seems accurate. It’s an 8 story building described as being built for the Trustees of Mrs Mary Goodson (I have no idea), with the ground floor being occupied by the Bank of Scotland.More recently retail, now unoccupied, as are the floors above.

The building has been unoccupied for some time, derelict, decaying, and now considered to be at risk. Specifically:

27 October 2015: Local planners advise Full Planning Permission and Listed Building Consent for the demolition of the building and erection of a mixed use development are being sought ref: 15/01492/DC & 15/01493/DC. Risk Level raised to High.

Although not immediately evident, it seems the exterior is disintegrating, and a closer look reveals extensive areas of protective mesh have been fixed to retain fractured material and prevent it falling onto the street below.

50 Argyle Street And Miller Street

50 Argyle Street And Miller Street

Closer look at the safety retaining mesh:

50 Argyle Street Mesh

50 Argyle Street Mesh

Rather than go back and try for pics of the murals, I thought I’d play with what I already had, to see if they could be reasonably extracted from the images earlier shots (one other taken of the Argyle Street elevation).

50 Argyle Street Panel 1

50 Argyle Street Panel 1


50 Argyle Street Panel 2

50 Argyle Street Panel 2


50 Argyle Street Panels 3 And 4

50 Argyle Street Panels 3 And 4


50 Argyle Sreet Miller Street Panels

50 Argyle Street Miller Street Panels

Clearer view of Panel 4 – reveals the bear has a fish for dinner.

50 Argyle Street Panel 4

50 Argyle Street Panel 4

Not too bad overall, with the main problem for me being the obscured areas lost to passer-by in front of some areas.

The day wasn’t particularly bright so the higher than desirable ISO setting (for making such small crops) means noise starts to become apparent, but given the minimal processing applied (I didn’t want to spend a lot of time on this exercise), I’m not complaining.

October 23, 2017 Posted by | Civilian, photography | , , | Leave a comment

Unfair to cats!

A recent sortie into the city brought some sad and bad news…

The cats of Howard Street and Dunlop Street have been largely ruined.

Glasgow Howard Street Cat Murals Boarded Up

Glasgow Howard Street Cat Murals Boarded Up

Yes, sure, they were never going to be permanent, but they were pretty good and deserved to be around for longer.

They were certainly nicer to look at than the odd face murals that were created under the bridge at Broomielaw (I haven’t been there, so no pics only for that reason), which I recently read somewhere were beginning to fall apart as water got behind the plaster they were painted on, but they might be repaired.

No such love, apparently, for the cats of Howard and Dunlop streets.

Click the pic below for the originals:

Glasgow Dunlop St cats

Glasgow Dunlop St cats

August 13, 2017 Posted by | Civilian, Lost, photography | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Dunlop’s Auto Shop Rutherglen oopsie

I’ve been a little ‘Out of circulation’ for a few weeks, so didn’t manage a quick return to Dunlop’s new Auto Shop in Rutherglen to see how it looked after (or even if) had opened.

It’s all nicely ‘tarted up’ with some eye-catching shutter murals and graphics – which I would miss if I landed here early enough to catch the shop open, so being late can have advantages as most of this is hidden when the shutters are rolled up during the day.

I see the opportunity for fun is still a feature – if you drive a Proton and are looking for parts I invite you to test their offering of “Any Part For Any Car“. While there’s no mention of any compensation for their failure to meet that promise, you will at least (provided you are not in a hurry) know that a day or two’s effort was wasted behind the counter. Then there’s always the option of a hint to Trading Standards.

But there’s actually a bigger sin apparent in this pic, now that the signwriting has been completed.

And it’s NOT that lack of apostrophe on Dunlop’s, (Dunlops’?).. or Dunlops as they put it, even though that is a pretty big sin.

Rutherglen Dunlop's Auto Store

Rutherglen Dunlop’s Auto Store

Did you spot it?

It’s only repeated three times.

This, below the windows:

Please Keep Clear Dunlops

Please Keep Clear Dunlops

Tut-tut Dunlops, a car shop should know road law better than most.

You have no more rights to the public road in front of your shop than anyone else – the clue is in the word ‘public’.

This is a personal bugbear of mine whenever and wherever I see it, like the supposed ‘Red flag to a bull’ (seems they are colour blind), ever since I parked in front of Cross’s butcher shop (now gone, and the building even burnt down a few weeks ago) in Shettleston, on my way to hand a cheque into the nearby insurance agent.

Given the ranting and raving of the butcher who came running out of his shop to shout at me to “MOVE YOUR CAR! THAT SPACE IS RESERVED FOR MY CUSTOMERS! MOVE!” you could have been forgiven for thinking I had just knocked down his prize bull, instead of just having to listen to it.

Or that he did actually own that piece of road since it lay directly in from of his shop.

Public roads are just that – PUBLIC!

For the use of everyone who paid for them with their taxes.

You are entitled to the bit you are using, and nobody else has any more entitlement, be that the road in front of their shop, or even their house. Can’t get parked in front of your own house because someone has parked on that piece of road. Sorry, you’ll have to walk a few metres.

I’ll be watching this inventive piece of signwriting in the future.

Maybe someone local will take the hump (don’t look at me, I don’t live there, I’m just an observer), and have a word with the council, roads department, or even police.

Or maybe someone thinks that little end piece of road is no longer classed as ‘public road’ since it’s been blocked off, and this is OK.

August 12, 2017 Posted by | Civilian, photography, Transport | , , , , | Leave a comment


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