Secret Scotland

If it's secret, and in Scotland…

Funny camera sign for illegal rubbish dumpers

I must have passed this sign dozens of times without realising it was there, warning anyone dumping rubbish around the official bins for the Alexandra pub in Dennistoun’s Bluevale Street that they were ‘on camera’.

Camera Dump Sign

Camera Dump Sign

And the best bit?

Follow the arrow on the sign and there actually is a camera to be found there – whether or not it’s real, still works, or is connected to a recorder…

That’s anyone’s guess.

Dump Camera

Dump Camera

May 11, 2017 Posted by | Civilian, photography | , , , | 2 Comments

Job sign is blunt and to the point

I first spotted this sign on April 1, and given the significance of that day, and the fact that I had never seen it, or come across another one before, was not sure if it was real.

While I approve of its simple and blunt message, I’m also usually dismayed by union approached to such things, and would not be surprised to find strikes being called to have such a sign banned on the basis that it was somehow ‘unfair and threatening’ to the poor, persecuted union members.

But after looking closer at the site concerned, I saw more of these signs posted around the perimeter, and a pile of them lying beside the… tea room.

I’ve also checked my own industrial sign supplier, and see that it is fact one of a number of such blunt signs that combine various equipment omissions that will lead to employment problems.

No Job Sign

No Job Sign

April 15, 2017 Posted by | Civilian, photography | , , | 3 Comments

No dog fouling

Sprayed on a local footpath.

I always like these over-simplified signs which are open to interpretation.

Does it inform us that there is ‘No dog fouling’ in this area, in the sense that a survey has been carried out and that it was found that there were no, or zero, dogs found to be fouling in the area, and this sign has been proudly sprayed to tell everyone lucky enough to walk here?

Or is there only one ‘dog fouling’ here, and its name is ‘No’.

Or is it instructional, and people are expected to shout ‘No’ if they see a ‘dog fouling’.

Or is it meant for dogs to read, saying ‘No’ to any ‘dog fouling’.

Or is it a pic of ‘No dog’ taken while he was ‘fouling’ and intended to shame him into not doing it again.

Can I go on? Thankfully, no (I have other things to do).

Not sure exactly where, I think near Haymarket St and Marfield St in Carntyne.

I only saw 4 sprayed nearby, so wonder if it is just a resident’s handiwork, and not an official instruction.

Seems a little unfair, as I walk the streets quite a bit nowadays, and have been quite impressed as nearly every dog walker I see, even on grassed areas, seems to be prepared to carry little black plastic bags, and collect their pet’s ‘soft warm gift’ without flinching. So much so, passing overflowing street bins in anything resembling warm weather is now best carried out at a distance, or at least holding breath until past. An unfortunate effect of council cuts and reduced collections combine with a successful campaign to gain dog walker’s cooperation.

No dog fouling

No dog fouling

March 5, 2017 Posted by | Civilian, photography | , , | Leave a comment

Barrowland neon does light up

There’s a definite downside to being forced off the road (aka not driving) in that you lose the desire to go to risky places carrying camera gear that might look expensive. Low light photography become a thing for early winter evenings when you can walk to possibly interesting places when there are still crowds around, rather than going places in the dead of night when they are deserted, and only likely to have people you would probably rather not meet being nearby.

I had no idea the Barrowland Ballroom neon still worked, let alone was in use, but there it was one (dark) afternoon/evening, flashing away and looking impressive.

As an aside, seeing it has made me wonder where I could find anything similar, since all the other (large) neon adverts are long gone from Glasgow.

I don’t have a sufficiently wide lens to catch the whole frontage in one shot, and panorama stitching results in distortion when used so close to the subject, so this was a chance to exercise some perspective correction filtering I had been using for another project. Provided this is applied correctly (and ignoring the anomalies that can arise for non-planar views) the results can be pretty good, as this corrected shot illustrates:

Barrowland night tweak

Barrowland night tweak

The coach wasn’t going anywhere, and is the only real flaw.

It was harder timing this shot to catch all the lighting active than to correct it, since the stars and letters are not all illuminated all the time. Now alerted, you should be able to spot the variation in intensity of some of them.

‘Experts’ (who I suspect don’t even own a camera) keep telling me to shoot this sort of scene in RAW, but I’m sorry, I’ll be ignoring them and sticking with jpg while the results come out like this, and I don’t  have to work harder.

For reference, this is the original view, which I had to capture from one side and at an angle to get into a single frame.

This was partly dictated by the lens, but at the time, was also forced on me as it was the only place I could get a clear and unobstructed view (forgetting that coach), and I’d probably have been given a hard time if I’d tried climbing onto the roof of pub/shops just behind.

Barrowland night natural

Barrowland night natural

January 18, 2017 Posted by | Civilian, photography | , , , | Leave a comment

STRICTLY NO PHOTOGRAPHY at this Photo Experience

I’m almost tempted to leave off the ‘oxy’ when noting the funny oxymoronic ‘Photo-Experience’ signage I spotted in the St Enoch Centre (and had all but forgotten until I started indexing some of my recent pics).

While it’s fair to say we know what they mean, it would have been nicer had they taken some proper advice and prepared a more friendly and polite request, rather than this rather crude and blunt effort, which would be more appropriate on something like a security sign outside a Top Secret military establishment (where you might get shot for ignoring it).

No photo photo experience 01

No photo Photo Experience

I’ve been playing with some distortion filters, so thought I’d give this one a try, to make the warning clearer, especially the extra on the left:

No photo photo experience extra sign

No photo Photo Experience extra sign

Surprisingly effective correction, for little or no effort.

January 13, 2017 Posted by | Civilian, photography | , , , | Leave a comment

Does a Neighbourhood Watch with no watchers actually work?

I had to follow a slightly different path during one of my recent wanders, as the gates to a station on the route were tied shut. When I got closer I could some busy men working away on platform – but due to the lie of the land I couldn’t see what the were doing as they were above me since the road passed below the station.

But I did notice something I hadn’t spotted before, the Neighbourhood Watch warning sign shown below, attached to lamppost on the station’s perimeter:

Neighbourhood Watch sign

Neighbourhood Watch sign

I have to admit, this one left me more than a little puzzled.

After all, one of the things you need for a neighbourhood watch to work is… watchers!

In this particular case, a look to north from near this sign shows:

Neighbourhood Watch North

Looking North

To the south:

Neighbourhood Watch South

Looking South

To the east:

Neighbourhood Watch East

Looking East

And finally to the west, with the path to the station above, which is an unmanned station, and the lamppost with the sign attached:

Neighbourhood Watch West

Looking West

To be fair, this is a little tongue-in-cheek, and while there is nobody here, and few people to see that sign (I seldom see anyone else when I walk here), the actual area it covers is that of Broomhouse, for which you can find more details here:

Scheme detail- Broomhouse

Broomhouse Community Council

March 10, 2014 Posted by | Civilian, Surveillance | , , | 2 Comments


I’ve been looking at this shop sign for ages, but for various reasons, never been able to stop and catch a pic.

The shop itself is long gone (I assume, since I’ve never seen it open when I’ve been passing), and if business was better, probably another would have opened in the premises and I’d have lost the chance to catch the sign, but I managed it this week, even if the heavens did open and try to make it almost impossible to dare take out a camera that was guaranteed waterproof.

Shoplifters sign


February 22, 2014 Posted by | photography | , , | Leave a comment

Honeywell Electronic Surveillance

I like coming across forgotten old signs, something that is becoming harder and harder to do as so many organisations find they have a “clean freak” somewhere on board, and they love to instigate Tidy Up campaigns, on the basis that the smarten up the company image and make it look more successful and productive.

Somebody needs to take these OCD types around to the back of bike sheds, and introduce them to the difference between somewhere that looks ‘interesting’, and somewhere that has merely become depressing and grubby because nobody has bother to keep it clean and tidy. ‘Old’ does not necessarily equate to ‘dirty’.

While walking along a perimeter fence, I happened to spot this survivor from the past, presumably warning potential offenders who may have wanted to climb it that they were being watched.

Honeywell Electronic Surveillance sign

Honeywell Electronic Surveillance sign

Hard to tell what it may have referred to when it was valid, if it ever was.

It might have been  nothing more than a bit of psychological warfare.

February 15, 2014 Posted by | Civilian, photography | , | Leave a comment

No more Tool for Eve

It was just over a year ago when I spotted a funny pic, with A Tool for Eve.

The joke is no more, since they had the sign repaired.

But things are little better, as it’s no longer funny, still broken, and just sad now.

They’re not getting much for their money from whoever services their signs.

No Tool for Eve

No Tool for Eve

As it was a year ago:

A Tool for Eve

A Tool for Eve

February 12, 2014 Posted by | Uncategorized | , | Leave a comment

Little old sign in Baillieston

I seem to have mentioned the ‘tidy effect’ once or twice in recent posts.

This refers to some areas finding that anything old is automatically unwanted, and considered to bring down the tone of the area, so has to be removed to clear the place up, tidy it, and make it look ‘better’, and probably show that the local councillor is ‘on the job’, so deserves a vote.

I noticed a little sign on a long surviving shop in Baillieston, and I wondered if anyone ever even noticed it.

I spotted it because I try to remember to ‘look up’ (sometimes), just in case there’s something interesting to see off the usual eye-line, or towards the upper storeys or roofs of building I’m passing.

I won’t give the exact location, so locals who may have missed this over the years can play at finding it – thought it should probably be fairly obvious for anyone that knows the place.

Baillieston Sign

Baillieston Sign

February 3, 2014 Posted by | Civilian, photography | , | Leave a comment

Old F. W. Woolworth sign at Charing Cross lasted longer than Woolworth’s

I always forget about this sign until I happen to walk along Renfrew Street or around Charing Cross, and happen to look at the backs of the Sauchiehall Street buildings.

It’s another in the recent low-light series, with lighting from street lights and a floodlight above a door somewhere below.

The only available support didn’t quite provide full stability, or let me avoid a bit of the sign being obscured by a street sign, but then again, any pic is better than no pic.

I have to slow down a bit, and take more care.

Old Woolworth sign

Old Woolworth sign

January 26, 2014 Posted by | Civilian, photography | , , | Leave a comment

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