Secret Scotland

If it's secret, and in Scotland…

Nardini mural revisit

Last time I passed the now derelict Nardini ice cream parlour in Byres Road I mentioned a mural I spotted at the rear of the interior.

Since I hadn’t noticed it at the time, I was only able to expand the catch in the original pic, which meant it was a fairly poor view.

I passed recently, and actually remembered to stop and take a better pic, albeit through dirty glass.

It appears to made of panels, so could have been taken down and removed, but since it was left, it can be assumed to have been new, rather than any sort of original (and costly),

That said, a closer look suggests it was painted by someone with good knowledge of the Art Deco period and style as it contains recognisable elements which were prevalent at the time. I’d say some more modern elements have crept in, but they’re probably only noticeable if you’ve studied the period, and look more closely than normal at the detail.

The3 more I looked at it, the more I began to like it and wouldn’t mind having it on one of my own walls.

Pity it will most likely be torn from the wall and skipped when the interior is refitted for the next occupant.

Click for bigger.

Nardini Mural

Nardini Mural

Out of interest, I also noticed one of the side walls had some old B&W pics mounted, and while the lighting units had been stripped, the pics had been left on the wall.

It wasn’t passible to take a proper pic due to the oblique angle as seen from the street, but I did take the oblique view, then corrected the perspective in an attempt to see what was in the pics.

It worked reasonably well, and the only real problem is the increasing blurring toward the right, as this was the furthest (and therefore smallest) part of the view, so was also the part that had to  be stretched most to correct the perspective distortion.

Probably just fairly standard ice cream novelty pics from the mid-20th century, but there’s also a couple of pics of Nardini’s shop in Largs.

Click for bigger.

Nardini Pics

Nardini Pics

07/08/2019 Posted by | Civilian, photography | , , | Leave a comment

Nardini update (Byres Road)

Not sure if ‘update’ is the right word, but it will have to do after I passed Nardini’s defunct Byres Road venue.

Since I’d never seen the place before that chance spotting, I had a slightly closer look when I was in the area again, and remembered.

It was hard to avoid the reflections on the glass, and see anything, let alone take a pic through the glass.

I didn’t even know what I had until I saw the pic, and found the place had been largely stripped of anything that could be moved, leaving only the fixed part of the servery – the counter had gone, as had whatever seating and tables might have been there.

I didn’t realise there was a rather nice Art Deco mural on the back wall – it was just a blur in the background as I looked inside.

Byres Road Ex-Nardini InteriorByres Road Ex-Nardini Interior

Byres Road Ex-Nardini Interior

Not ideal, but I tried cropping and enlarging the mural…

Nardini mural

Nardini mural

And what was left of the similarly styled servery…

Nardini servery

Nardini servery

And, of course, since it was added the day AFTER I took the first pic, a look at the sign warning anyone trying to access the place after its closure was confirmed.

Nardini repossesion sign

Nardini repossession sign

Since I had to do a short course on law, I always seem to start analysing such signs for legitimacy, and whether the folk who make them had a clue about the law and what they assert.

In this case, I found myself wondering about what law might be used to make the mere opening of a door illegal.

At least they didn’t make the mistake of referring to trespass.

Scotland DOES have trespass laws (it seems to be a VERY long time since I’ve heard anyone make the bold, but just plain wrong, claim that “There’s no law of trespass in Scotland”), but they’re a little different from the English version. Ours is a little harder to break.


20/05/2019 Posted by | Civilian, council, Lost, photography | , , , | Leave a comment

(Young) Scots have no idea how to dress for their own local weather!

I mentioned this same subject only a couple of weeks ago, as I find it fascinating.

I gave up burning money I didn’t have years ago, in other words it would cost so much to heat my house, there’s just no point in trying.

I reckon I’m used to the cold life now, so I usually find it amusing to be out without things like a woolly hat, scarf, winter jacket (obviously over load of jumpers), gloves etc etc.

I actually wonder how people like that survive, as I break out into a sweat if it’s just a little cold (as opposed to freezing) and I try wearing a woolly hat – it usually ends up stuffed into my pocket. I also can’t understand those who wear such hats, usually paired with fingerless gloves in summer – I’d MELT if I tried that.

Yesterday may have looked nice, but unless the Sun was actually shining on you, the actual temperature stayed below 10°C.

I’d been in Largs for a while, clear blue skies and sunshine, and that meant it didn’t feel cold, but I was still amazed at the number of folk wandering around in T-shirts, some even on the beach and dangling their toes in the water. I poked a tentative exploratory finger in… it was FREEZING. That said, plenty of folk were wrapped up, a good idea since the sea breeze can be chilly.

Back in Glasgow (by then it was nudging 8 pm) I was standing in a queue beside a girl with nothing more than tiny white shorts and a vest on (and canvas shoes). She wasn’t the only one around.

I know the temperature then was  a ‘sweltering’ 8°C, and falling, and I was feeling the cold by then.

Pity I don’t dare take obvious pics, but she was standing right beside me. This is the sort of gem a phone would be handy for. Oh well.

Ah! Maybe I did catch just one example.

Compare and contrast: guy on the extreme left, with the group at Nardini’s entrance.

Click for bigger.

Largs Nardini

Largs Nardini

Not a pic I expected to take, ever.

Apart from being priced off the road, the last pics I tool of this place were of a virtual derelict that seemed to be in danger of being lost – so now you know when I was last able to get to Largs.

I can’t see any pics stored of those visits, so I guess that’s so long ago they’re locked away on film.

There are some pics dating back to 2006 and 2008 in Zak’s Gallery if you want to see this place in the past.

Comments are always fun, and while a family dispute led to the ultimate closure, it’s amusing to see someone have a dig at the council for not keeping the place (a private family business, not related in any way to the council or its budget) open 😉

10/04/2019 Posted by | Civilian | , , | Leave a comment

Found Nardini – Immediately lost Nardini (Byres Road)

I thought I had walked further than I thought when I saw a ‘Cafe Nardini’ sign a few days ago.

As I seldom get to Byres Road I decided to go for an extended wander while I was in the area, and thought I’d been teleported to Largs for a moment, as I saw a familiar Nardini sign ahead of me.

Seems they opened there about four years ago, but closed on 31 December 2018, with the sign in the window promising ‘Closing for refurbishment’, and ‘Back soon – New & improved’.

Nardini Refurb Notice

Nardini Refurb Notice


Only a few days after I grabbed this pic, I read that the unit had been repossessed and was now up for let.

The refurb notice is said to have gone (replaced by a handwritten sign warning any joiners or locksmiths that it is ‘Illegal to open this door!’ – wish that had been up when I passed, and could have got a pic), and Nardini’s have reportedly confirmed that they will not be reopening the place.

Not known if related or not, but it seems they had made a retrospective planning application for a change of use at the address (as a café), and that was rejected last year.

Byres Road Nardini

Byres Road Nardini


Still, I’d probably have decided to have a treat, taken a look through the window at their prices, and needed an ambulance!


This major story hit the local media later…

Nardini’s ice cream parlour has shut its doors in the west end

01/03/2019 Posted by | Civilian, council, Lost, photography | , , , | Leave a comment


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