Secret Scotland

If it's secret, and in Scotland…

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.


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

Closer look at Celtic (and Emirate shed) EV charging

Since I had some old (unused) pics lying around, I thought I might as well look at EV (electric vehicle) charging at Parkhead.

I won’t go techie, mainly because the last time I did this the end result was just to attract the sort of moron who spends their day telling folk they are wrong (even when they are right – I CAN read electrical standards).

There are actually some more (I haven’t mentioned before) down at Dalmarnock, but that’s not Parkhead, so maybe later.

This was sparked (sorry) off by the sighting of a privileged vehicle being charged in Celtic’s little car park, and it made me curious.

This turns out to be an electrical enclosure mounted OUTSIDE the car park, and fitted with 2 x 32 A 400 V and 2 x 16 A 230 V connectors. I assume isolators are mounted inside the enclosure (otherwise Glasgow neds would have their houses plugged in!) and ‘protected’ by the keys mentioned on the labelling.

Me? I’d check all those cables dropping from the bottom of the enclosure, and make sure they’re all legit, and that none of them run to any nearby houses.

Celtic Car Park EV Charging Rear

Celtic Car Park EV Charging Rear

With no good reason (ever in my lifetime) to be inside such a place, I can only take my best legal shot from a public place, the street, so this is the connection INSIDE the car park.

I’m guessing it’s just a conventional (but weatherproof) 13 A mains socket.

No fast(ish) charging here unless you have a Tesla and suitable adapter for the 32 A socket outside the fence.

Celtic Car Park EV Charging Spot

Celtic Car Park EV Charging Spot

Meanwhile, across the road

I hinted that the car park behind the big empty shed (they tell me it’s the Emirates Arena), across the road from Celtic Park had real EV charging stations that ANYBODY could use, not just someone with Celtic parking privileges.

And it appears to be free to use (after you cough up £10 for a card to let you access all such stations in Scotland).

Sure enough, I still have the pics from my wander across the vast empty expanse of that car park.

I wish I had an EV.

Charging Bays

Charging Bays

EV Charger

EV Charger

October 13, 2017 Posted by | photography, Transport, Uncategorized | , , , , | 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

What was behind this mystery gate in Duke Street near Parkhead?

I’ve been passing the red gate (well, mostly red, now faded, plus rust) for some years, and had expected to trip over some reference or other which might explain why it was there, or what it belonged to.

No luck so far.

In my time, there’s never been anything on the land behind, apart from the occasional pile of rubbish, and the fenced area has always just been a piece of ‘spare ground’. Recently, the only activity ever witnessed there has been the opening of a larger locked gate (out of sight, to the right) and display of a sign offering car-parking for a few pounds, on big match days at Celtic Park.

In the hope of digging something up I recently combed the online historic records for the area, and pulled up aerial imagery for the surrounding area. The former listed nothing for the spot, while none of the freely available aerial imagery even shows a building there.

I found some B&W aerial views that show the various steel and chemical works which occupied the surrounding area in the past, and even oblique views which date back to the 1930, including Carntyne Stadium (there was a stadium entrance immediately to the left of this gate – but separated from it by a wall/fence), but even then, the land on this spot still appears to be completely bare.

The old stadium entrance arch survived until a few years ago, when it was razed along with a small factory and business that lay to its left, leaving the land clear, with no other evidence of its use other than the perimeter fence. As far as I know, the industrial premises to the left was Tubular Scaffolding Ltd, said to have been founded around 1929 and described as the oldest scaffolding company in Glasgow, run by a family called Cole-Hamilton.

So. my usual resources all seem to have come up empty.

Do YOU know better?

Duke Street Mystery Gate

Duke Street Mystery Gate

Here’s a closer look at the hardware fitted to this gate.

As can be seen, these articles are fairly modern.

There’s a lock fitted to the gate which has an electrically operated release, and an intercom which visitors could ‘Ring the bell’ and speak to those inside and request entry, being ‘Buzzed in’ if they were granted access.

There’s also a metal ‘post box’ over to the right, so the postie didn’t need to gain access to deliver letters.

The original lock has long ago been burst, and the gate secured with a fairly robust chain.

Mystery Gate Hardware

Mystery Gate Hardware

Bonus note

Just for completeness, this a view of the former Carntyne Stadium entrance (and the wall of TS Scaffolding’s premises to the left) – when they were still standing a few years ago..

The gate in question lies a few metres to the right, out of shot.

Carntyne Stadium Duke Street

Carntyne Stadium Duke Street


The original pics are oldish, and more recent snaps from the same place betray the fact the NOTHING is beyond the attention of the Glasgow ned, not even a wrecked gate/door intercom.

As can be seen below, even the remains of that dead item were later stripped off their place next that gate.

The chain still survives, so far…

Stripped Panel

Stripped Panel

September 28, 2017 Posted by | Appeal, Civilian, photography | , , , , | 2 Comments

The illegals – Still illegal even if you are S600REE

Spotted in a local car park, another illegally spaced plate which I guess the sales rep convinced someone it either looks like their name, or perhaps they are immigrants from Canada, and want to make sure everyone knows they are sorry via S600 REE, as displayed with no space on this grey 2015 Vauxhall Insignia SRI CDTI Ecoflex.

I’m only having a fun guess at this one, and might even be right in my interpretation, but as I generally note these days, I’m not really that impressed by the sometimes dire interpretation the plate sellers put on some of their offerings (reading private ads can sometimes be hysterical, when a seller’s imagination is possibly/clearly influenced by drugs or alcohol), when you need to spend time with a code-book to hand in order to work out what they mean.

Barring novelty plates, if you can’t ‘read’ it within a few seconds of seeing it, it’s a fail.

Maybe that’s why I have a soft spot for plates with only 2 letters – probably initials, and seldom needs guesswork or screwing up eyes to ‘see; what the salesperson saw.

But who cares? It looks interesting.

Be nice to know what it REALLY represents – if you know, please add a comment below.

Vauxhall Insignia [S600 REE]

Vauxhall Insignia [S600 REE]

September 8, 2017 Posted by | Civilian, photography, Transport | , , , | 1 Comment

In Glasgow’s deadly east end, not even a Smurf is safe

Some say…

Glasgow is a violent city, and the east end is not somewhere to be after dark, Parkhead being no exception.

In fact, I was appalled to learn that the manager of a small estate agents in Shettleston insisted on having his shop closed and staff on their way home before 6 pm every evening, in the belief that the place turned into some sort of ‘battle zone’ not long after that hour passed, when open gang warfare would break out on the streets, and the locals cowered in their homes waiting for the dawn.

(True story, revealed when the owner – from the affluent suburb of Newton Mearns – would apparently not even allow a shopfitter I knew to work on upgrading the premises after hours to avoid disrupting the business – he preferred just to close down for a week and have the work done during the day.)

It’s all lies, of course.

However, I was shocked to see that not even an innocent little Smurf was safe in the area.

Send the children to bed now, or at least cover their eyes, so they are spared the sight of this unfortunate Smurf I found beaten to a pulp, and left for dead in a street corner near Parkhead Cross.

I’m pretty sure it’s dead.

Dead Smurf

Dead Smurf

July 19, 2017 Posted by | Blogroll, photography | , , | Leave a comment

You don’t see many of these nowadays

I had to look twice at this recent find near Parkhead.

First, simply because it was a Ford Capri Injection (in this case from 1987), and now pretty rare since there was hardly a huge amount of these to begin with.

And second, because it looked really clean and shiny. While I didn’t get up close and personal, looking at the panel edges and seams didn’t show any obvious evidence of rot, not does it look like a respray, so I’m guessing this has been well looked after over the years.

While I never really got my hands on a Capri (and was driving a Sierra which actually rolled off the production line at the same time as this one), I did manage to get assigned ‘transport duties’ for the boss’s (or boss’s wife’s) black 2 litre version.

I have to be honest and say I wasn’t impressed and couldn’t understand its popularity – unless this was based on looks only.

I like (and own) low 2-seat coupés, there’s a 50-inch ‘tall’ one in my drive, but getting inside that 2 litre Capri was just… weird.

In my own car, controls fall to hand.

In the Capri, the gear lever seemed to lie somewhere down a hole in the floor, in a non-intuitive place; the steering wheel seemed to be too high (or something odd); and the instruments were just buried too far down their nacelles in the dash; I hate add  this too, but the pedal position was not intuitive either – I only have size 10 feet, yet there seemed to be no ‘wiggle room’ down there.

My job was just to ferry the car – I really wouldn’t have liked to have needed to ‘hustle’ it along.

I’m not slating it, merely noting that despite liking it from the ‘looks’ point of view, it really just didn’t ‘fit’ me.

And that’s a very personal aspect.

Since my own car fitted perfectly from the very first time I sat in it.

(And, my apologies, but you’ll just have to guess as I give no personal stuff online – this is not Facecrook.)

Ford Capri Injection 1987 [D422 DLE]

Ford Capri Injection 1987

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

Salvation Army building in Tollcross Road

When I collect pics of interesting buildings I can usually find some sort of reference in archives to their history, and get an idea of when they were built and who was responsible for them.

This one is in Tollcross Road, not far from Parkhead Cross, but other than what can be seen on the façade, that’s about as much as I’ve ever come across, or can say about it.

As far as I can tell, apart from the façade, the rest of the building appears to fairly utilitarian, and is really just a hall with a decorative front.

The ‘doo’ (Glaswegian for pigeon) eyeing up the door looks just about as mystified as me about this building’s past.

It doesn’t even have some sort of date stone, so the best indications of its age are the Art Deco style letters carved above the entrance, and the pair of Art Nouveau stained-glass windows above that. Windows and doors below are modern refurbishments.

So, guess broadly around the first third of the 20th century, and this is no surprise, given the age of similar building in the area.

Tollcross Road Salvation Army Building

Tollcross Road Salvation Army Building

July 7, 2017 Posted by | Civilian, photography | , , , | Leave a comment

Electrical decay

No prizes for completing the word.

Just a detail I pass frequently – and a bit sad since it probably reflects a failed business as opposed to a relocate on.

Electrician sign derelict


March 30, 2017 Posted by | Civilian, photography | , , , | Leave a comment

Crail Street mural in Parkhead

I don’t know what it is about this mural, but it took me years to grab a pic.

Either I totally forgot about it (Crail Street is a side street, and the mural is slightly hidden down it), or when I remembered… no camera.

Glasgow now has many PROPER murals (as opposed to the mindless splatterings of most graffiti vandals trying to emulate the worst one of all – name starts with a ‘B’ and I’ll give no more publicity to), but this one is notable for the amazing level of detail it contains – the more you look, the more you see. This is quite different from many of the others which, by way of contrast, are large versions of their subject, visible from a distance. View Crail Street from any significant distance and you’ll see very little.

Worth finding and taking a closer look at.

The BBC featured it in a programme – but I didn’t see it. I don’t watch enough television now (and I used to watch too much).

Crail Street mural

Crail Street mural

There’s clearly a story and plan behind this mural and its content – I just seem to be too thick to find it.

What I can say from looking closer is that it features representations of industries and businesses established in the area, icons that represent Glasgow, and illustration of many buildings from the surrounding area.


March 28, 2017 Posted by | Civilian, photography | , | Leave a comment

Diffusion tubes – revealed!

It’s some time since I made some posts in various places trying to identify the items shown below:

I had tried to find something similar online, but just couldn’t format any sort of search string that trawled up anything even remotely similar.

Apart from a few suggestions, nobody else came up with anything that more of an educated guess, and the only agreement was that it was related to environmental monitoring.

Now that I have identified the devices, I’m rather disappointed that we didn’t get an answer, as they are pretty common, used around the country by councils, and easy to find… once you know their proper name, at least.

These are passive diffusion tubes, probably being used to measure the level of nitrogen dioxide (NO2) in the surrounding area, although they can be used to sample other substances such as sulphur dioxide, ozone, and benzene. The tubes are often placed on the façades of buildings, and usually near busy roads since road traffic is the main source of NO2.

A nitrogen dioxide passive diffusion tube is a clear plastic tube open at one end, and fitted at the closed end with a mesh is impregnated with a pollutant absorbing chemical. The diffusion tube collects the pollutant during the exposure period, usually one month, and is then sealed and returned to a laboratory for analysis.

Diffusion tube

Diffusion tube parts

The mesh (shown just below the cap at the top of the tube) is soaked in a special fluid called ‘triethanolamine’ or TEA which functions as an emulsifier and surfactant, neutralizes fatty acids, adjusts and buffers the pH, and solubilises oils and other ingredients that are not completely soluble in water.

This passive sampling system needs no pumps or similar to take its sample, and as its name suggests is dependent on diffusion. At its simplest, diffusion caused the air molecules plus whatever gasses they may be mixed with, to be transported to the top of the top as a result of the random motion of the molecules as they bump into one another. Wind and other air movements play no part in this process, although they may (or may not) assist,

NO2 (and other gasses in the air) are then collected by the TEA fluid on the mesh, which is then collected after the exposure period and sent for analysis.

If you’d like a real introduction:

Microsoft Word – NO2_WG_PracticalGuidance_Issue1a.doc – 0802141004_NO2_WG_PracticalGuidance_Issue1a.pdf

The tubes I spotted are just a small contribution to a much larger UK wide survey:

Compilation of Diffusion Tube Collocation Studies … – UK-Air – Defra

The fancy version

Although these diffusion tubes have been around (and puzzling me) for years, Glasgow City Council upped their game a little while ago, and installed something a little more complicate at Parkhead Cross, just a few metres from one of the diffusion tubes pictured above:

Air sampler

Parkhead Cross air sampler

June 24, 2013 Posted by | council | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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