Secret Scotland

If it's secret, and in Scotland…

Taxi logic – Love it!

Years ago (lot of them), I used to spend part of my Saturday morning at a friend’s business, just learning stuff by watching.

While he hadn’t been the most qualified person (yes, he did leave school the moment he could) he was mechanically smart, and had spent a lot of time in the family taxi business, and set up a little taxi repair and service business that just grew and grew, as he was good, and cheap (by which I mean low cost).

So much so, he added another little specialist business after a few years, tuning German performance cars, and ultimately sold up, moved to the US – and ended up running a BMW dealership.

I learned a lot just hanging around the original shed, and picked up some great anecdotes.

Taxi drivers are great professionals – until you hit their bottom line (profits).

One day we were having lunch when one driver pulled in and spent about 20 minutes letting us know his opinion of the taxi inspectors that drove around in little white vans then, and did random on the spot inspections of black cabs, checking for non-compliance with the regulations.

He’d been put off the road that morning for driving an unsafe cab – and he WASN’T HAPPY!

He’d been stopped as the inspector spotted something odd from behind – the wheels didn’t look right as he’d been following the cab.

The cab had been pulled over and given a spot inspection of the wheels, and ordered off the road immediately.


The wrong studs had been fitted, and the wheels were only being held on by about three turns of the thread, or about the quarter of an inch of the thread.

The driver couldn’t understand what was wrong – in his opinion the wheels were fitted just fine, as the studs had been tightened OK.

He didn’t stop complaining all the time he was in the works, and went to everyone that arrived while the correct items were being fitted – we were glad to see him go, and while he might not have been happy, the rest of us were relieved that he’d been spotted.

I was reminded of that while I read this one…

Glasgow taxi drivers criticise council’s Avenue Project reducing space on roads

I’m not really picking on the taxi driver’s short-sighted vision of the Avenue Project (it was just the latest to be reported). There are others.

I find it more intriguing that if you’ve watched this project develop, and listened to the endless whining, then you’ll notice that NOBODY who considers they didn’t get 100% of what they wanted from this project is distinctly unhappy about it, and doesn’t miss an opportunity to whine and complain, and let everyone know how useless it is.

If we could actually return Sauchiehall Street to the busy and congested form it had some years (think decades) ago, just for them, I think that would a great idea.

While the rest of us got to have the Avenue Project now being put in place.

Just us, not any of the whiners, they’d be forced to stay with the old road!

Sauchiehall Street Avenue

Sauchiehall Street Avenue

02/03/2019 Posted by | Civilian, council, Transport | , , | Leave a comment

Lets’s recruit some Russian taxi drivers

I think that’s a Russian plate on the car.

Here, we just have a sign saying something like ‘No food or drink in taxi’.

In Russia, taxi drivers just deals with any problems as they arise.

Much better.

Imagine what he’d do if his fare threw up back there.


24/12/2018 Posted by | Civilian, Transport | , , | Leave a comment

Caught another taxi TXI 1410

Unlike the last catch, which was an odd Mercedes, this was the usual black cab.

What made it unusual (for me at least) was this one stayed still long enough for me to grab a pic.

I never catch these after seeing them, they always seem to get away as the lights change and they disappear into the distance.

There are a few interesting looking novelty plates on them (and some rather expensive-looking ones too), but by the time I spot them, they’re usually already gone.

Maybe now that I’ve managed this one, I’ll get some more for the ‘black cab collection’.

Bit of a misnomer – there’s so much stick on vinyl sheeting on this one, describing it as a ‘black cab’ is far from accurate, so I hope the owner remembered the legal requirement to update the vehicle records if there is a change of colour. Paint or vinyl makes no difference to this.

Taxi [TXI 1410]

Taxi [TXI 1410]

06/09/2018 Posted by | photography, Transport | , | Leave a comment

BAR 1 visits Glasgow – and makes me run!

A weird vehicle I didn’t recognise, but a more interesting registration.

Intriguing to see BAR 1 is on this little Mercedes thing – apparently a Citan 109 Cdi Traveliner – since this is a ‘1’ registration, it’s probably worth a lot more than what it’s attached to.

I just spotted this passing, out of the old traditional ‘Corner of my eye’, and then got lucky as I was able to slip through some back streets and catch it, just before it sped off into the distance.

2017 Mercedes Citan 109 Cdi Traveliner [BAR 1]

2017 Mercedes Citan 109 Cdi Traveliner [BAR 1]

I should look at the catalogues more often, and know what oddities the manufacturer’s are coming up with,


I later discovered the title of this post wasn’t really correct,

Although I’d assumed ‘Hampden’ cabs were connected to Hampden for some strange reason, it seems that’s not entirely true, and I tripped over their fairly sizeable base in… Polmadie/Oatlands/Shawfield/Rutherglen (I never know which of these applies – I’ve seen all given in adjacent addresses here, but they use Shawfield) a few days later.

Oh well – just proves the old ‘Never assume!’ warning.

24/08/2018 Posted by | photography, Transport | , , | Leave a comment

Oh look – a TXY

Quite a few taxis float around Glasgow city centre with interesting registration numbers on show (there goes the ‘poor taxi driver’ myth up in flames 😉 ), but I’m seldom able to add many of them to my collection as they’re usually in too much of a hurry, and I can’t get a camera out and warmed up in time.

I’ve got one or two lost somewhere in my archives, generally caught when the traffic lights have managed to change to red far enough in advance of their arrival. I’ve missed quite a few that should have been easy picking in traffic jams – but far from making them easy to catch, the number is usually hidden by the nose-to-tail traffic, and it can be hard to pick the right place to stand to catch it as the flow opens up. Usually they just shuffle forward a few at a time on green (thanks to the morons that block the box junction, apparently an offence that no-one is ever going to be fined for again), and I give up as it just takes to long.

It’s a lot easier when they’re parked up somewhere, and you can sneak up on them from behind!

Taxi [S2 TXY]

Taxi [S2 TXY]

23/04/2018 Posted by | photography, Transport | , | Leave a comment

The illegals – GL66 GOW

It’s a sort of valiant attempt, but it’s not improved by having illegal spacing on the plate.

The novelty would be better without it.

There’s also something of a ‘6’ theme here.

Most notable being a nice link to The Prisoner, with that City of Glasgow black Taxi plate at bottom right being a nice plain ‘6’.

Taxi [GL66 GOW]

Taxi [GL66 GOW]

07/02/2018 Posted by | photography, Transport | , , | 2 Comments

Wonderful Edinburgh lady taxi driver

I have something of a soft spot for Edinburgh taxi drivers – the mush some of them have for brains, and their ability to get their colleagues a bad name.

I like to give them a wide berth and stay away from them, as the few I get close to are usually not very nice.

Probably the worst example I encountered was when trying to park just across from the Government offices in Spittal St/Castle Terrace, where the building has a pair of relief panels mounted above its doorways.

I had just pulled up and started to reverse into a single parking space, the rest of the traffic had been obliging and passed me with no problems, yet when a black cab came along the road – the driver chose to drive right up against the back of my car (as I was reversing, complete with white reversing lamps illuminated) and just sat there sounding his horn, giving the appearance that I had somehow forced him to stop and was about to back into him.

I’ve no idea what provoked this response from this particular driver of a black cab, but he just sat there with his hand on the horn button, and ignored me waving him past. As he was an inch from the back of my car, and had brought the traffic behind him to a halt, there was little I could do other than drive on… or get out and confront him. The latter was not going to happen, since he was clearly deranged. Maybe he was jealous of my car and just wanted to wind up the driver.

Since that day, I’ve never given an Edinburgh taxi driver a break. If they’re stuck in traffic or trying to get out of a jam, then they do it behind me, after I’ve passed.

That was a few years ago, but I see they’re no better, and the supposedly better female versions seems to suffer from the same attitude problem too.

Lady taxi driver blocks trams to have lunch

There’s been some media coverage of a stupid female driver of a black cab in Edinburgh who decided her meal was more important than the free flow of the rest of Edinburgh’s traffic – must have been related to the clown I was unfortunate enough to meet.

She parked on the tram route and headed into a fast food (so now we know how much she cares about her guts) outlet, and waited inside, blocking the route for about 10 minutes according to witnesses.

Amazingly, instead of running away embarrassed at her demonstration of brainlessness, she simply pulled a U-turn and parked on the opposite side of the road, blocking the route on that side of the street.

The media published the pics of this brain-dead behaviour with the registration number blanked out, but the pic is available online with the number in plain sight.

See Hungry cabbie brings Edinburgh’s tram system to a standstill | Deadline News

So why did they obscure it? It’s in the public domain, as seen below:

Taxi locks Edinburgh trams

Taxi blocks Edinburgh trams

Pic credit to Cabbie makes Big Mac-stake – Edinburgh’s Worst Drivers

05/04/2014 Posted by | Transport | , , , | Leave a comment


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