Secret Scotland

If it's secret, and in Scotland…

More graffiti scum tagging

It’s hard to convey just how much contempt I hold for so-called graffiti artists and taggers, who think the world deserves to see their crap as they vandalise and damage people’s property.

As always, this does NOT extend to those working with permission.

In this case, some worthless little tagger chose to vandalise a lifebelt alert sign AND showed extreme disrespect by doing it next to someone’s memorial tribute.

Now that I see it with fresh flowers laid, I’m guessing someone died here, either drowned in the river, possibly an accident, or perhaps a suicide who jumped from the old Polmadie Footbridge, which lay just to left of this pic (and is now the new Polmadie Footbridge).

I don’t know the details, and queried the reason for a bottle of water being tied to the railings (fence) here. Original pic and query here: River Clyde pilgrimage point

Lifebelt Sign Vandalised At Memorial

Lifebelt Sign Vandalised At Memorial

Impressive fence painting too – dribbling nicely down from the top of the sign.


Dec 8, 2018 Posted by | Civilian, photography | , , , , , | Leave a comment

More vandalism, this time at a rarely seen reservoir site

Sad, but just after I mentioned vandalism of significant sites of interest, there was almost immediately yet another news report of a similar attack, on a rarely seen site.

Graffiti has been scratched on buildings and stones pulled from walls at a rarely seen abandoned village.

“Unprecedented” numbers of visitors have flocked to Ladybower Reservoir in Derbyshire since low water levels revealed the ruins of Derwent.

But park rangers say they have had to stop people trying to remove material from the site.

The Peak District National Park authority said it was shocked by the damage to the “iconic” structures.

Derwent was flooded in the 1940s to make way for Ladybower Reservoir, which was built between 1935 and 1943.

But this year’s long dry spring and summer has reduced the water levels so low that remains of the village have been exposed, which had drawn crowds of people in recent weeks.

Ladybower Reservoir’s flooded village vandalised

Possibly the worst thing about this story is the fact that it’s not even usual vandals that are damaging the site.

It’s common or garden every moronic members of the public, doing so in plain sight of everyone.

One visitor, Clare Whittaker from Sheffield, was left “upset and mad” when she saw both children and parents taking “beautiful” stones from the walls and throwing them into the mud.

I wonder if those people have the slightest clue?

If they were allowed to visit a transport museum, would they steal hubcaps and wipers from the older cars on display, and not see anything wrong, as all they were doing was “Taking home a little souvenir, to remind them of their visit to the museum”.

What chance is there of combatting this sort of vandalism and theft if so-called ‘ordinary people’ are just as bad/ignorant as the vandals?

Does everywhere have to be fenced off to safeguard it, and have armed security on patrol, to shoot anyone there without a pass?

Pervasive Security

Pervasive Security

Reminded me of an advert for something being sold as a ‘Trump Shovel’ for some reason.



Nov 25, 2018 Posted by | Civilian | | Leave a comment

More vandalism – Skye meteorite raid

The earlier post about scum using the train to get to the old IBM site to vandalise the remains, and my mention of the disappointing surprises I found when exploring historic sites in supposedly deserted and remote places in the far north of Scotland reminded my there was yet another recent story along similar lines.

The same sort of selfish people who do things like endanger the survival of bird species by collecting eggs destroy historic and scientifically significant sites by collecting (stealing) material from them. No less than the birds, once these sites are raided and destroyed (for one person’s satisfaction), they’re gone, forever.

In this case, it was yet another raid on a significant site of special interest on Skye.

Efforts are to be made to protect part of a 60-million-year-old meteorite impact site in Skye.

Geologists believe deposits from the meteorite were dug up and taken away by meteorite hunters earlier this month.

Dr Simon Drake, who discovered the impact site with colleague Dr Andy Beard in 2017, said he was appalled by the damage.

He said plans were being made to shield the affected area, which is only a few metres across, with reinforced glass.

A tiny amount of rare minerals, measuring less than the diameter of a human hair, have been found at the so-called ejecta desposit (sic) site.

One of the minerals, a brown crystal called niobium rich osbornite (TiNbVN), had never been recorded until Drake and Beard’s discovery last year.

The TiNbVN was found together with another mineral, vanadium rich osbornite (TiVN).

On the damage caused to site, Dr Drake said: “Up to a cubic metre of rock has been removed.

“The right-hand side of the outcrop has been cut into using a mini digger and picks and shovels.

“Four or five hundred fist-sized pieces of loose rock have also been taken.”

Meteorite hunters dig up 60 million-year-old site in Skye

Skye is being targetted by these thieves – back in 2014, an incident from 2011 was referred to:

In 2011, tonnes of rock were disturbed at a Jurassic site in what has been described as one of Scotland’s most reckless acts of fossil collecting.

Rock was dug away from cliffs near Bearreraig Bay in an apparent organised search for valuable specimens.

Dr Nick Fraser, keeper of natural sciences at National Museums Scotland, said: “We are excited by the opportunities to work together to bring Skye’s remarkable fossil heritage into greater prominence.

“This is a precious resource which, with support from the wider community, will benefit generations of islanders.”

Dr Neil Clark, of the Hunterian Museum at the University of Glasgow, said Skye’s internationally important fossils included “very rare” dinosaur remains.

He added: “Skye is the only place in Scotland from which dinosaurs have been found and has more than 10% of the world’s Middle Jurassic dinosaur species and more than 15% of the Middle Jurassic dinosaur sites.

“It is important that we look after and properly document these rare and globally significant fossil remains for future generations to study and enjoy.”

‘Reckless hunters’ threaten Dinosaur Isle fossils

Steal Anything

(I even stole that quote!)

Nov 24, 2018 Posted by | Civilian, Lost | , , , | Leave a comment

At least this IBM story did not refer to ‘UrbEx’

I knew the old IBM plant quite well at one point, both as IBM and the later buyer (I forget their name, sorry). Our engineers used to do quite a lot of work in there, and I had to go check this sometimes, or evaluate new contracts.

Originally a name I knew from the electronics boom that brought IBM to the area, I was probably one of those who could have been described as ‘shocked and stunned’ as the industry collapsed, and IBM began to close down and withdraw, and sell of part of the plant to others.

I recall being there while some parts of the place were being demolished, while other were being rebuilt/remodelled to suit the buyer who had taken over part of the site.

I was intrigued to read that vandals were using the local train service to get to the old place, and cause trouble.

All trains are to stop calling at IBM station in Inverclyde to prevent yobs alighting to cause trouble, The Scotsman has learned.

Hourly services to the station on the Glasgow-Wemyss Bay line will be suspended from 9 December.

It served the recently-demolished IBM factory in the former Spango Valley, which closed in 2016.

Fewer than 800 passengers a year – around two a day – still use it.

ScotRail said the station “was becoming a centre for antisocial and criminal behaviour”.

It said the move had been requested by local people and backed by British Transport Police.

The train operator said it would continue to maintain the station, and would review the decision next year.

It said services could resume if the factory site is redeveloped.

Trains to skip stop IBM station to curb ‘anti-social and criminal behaviour’

I’m glad the media seems to have fallen out of love with UrbEx (Urban Exploration) stories at the moment, which it usually likes to report on negatively, with talk of trespass and damage (which actual UrbExers are not involved in), or the exact opposite, as it splashes UrbEx pics over it pages as a ‘feature’ (sadly, according to one or two UrbExers I know, without paying for permission or honouring copyright, and ignoring them when challenged).

I used to be dismayed when I visited historic sites in places such as the far north of Scotland, many of them in desolate areas (chosen for their isolation). I found it hard to believe that vandals were even prepared to make the effort to get to these places, and be carrying fuel etc in order to set fire to them and burn them out completely. I used to think being in the middle of nowhere, miles from roads or paths would give them some protection.

I thought they’d be too attached to their beds, and booze, to even travel so far from those home comforts.


I think sites closer to populated places and people are probably safer, at least that was what I eventually found.

So, on this occasion at least, UrbEx was not listed as part of the problem.

IBM Halt Notice

Interestingly, this notice was pictured there back in April (this year, 2018).

Pity abellio/ScotRail CAN’T SPELL!

I hope the area has a nice time when it goes out with the station.

See A world without outwith

IBM Halt Notice

IBM Halt Notice

Nov 24, 2018 Posted by | Civilian, Lost, Transport | , , , , | Leave a comment

Why I hate graffiti vandals

While I have nothing but admiration for the folk who have created the various murals, large and small, that Glasgow is becoming famous for with its Mural Trail, I have nothing but contempt and disgust for the vandals who think they are being clever by trying to emulate them. They’re really just pathetic failures.

While our murals are installed with permission and are generally enjoyed by many, the graffiti vandals don’t care who they upset or inconvenience, what they destroy, damage, or deface, or what it costs to clean up after them.

In fact, I don’t really mind the small pieces of fun some of them dot around the city, usually in places where they are not ‘In your face’, and almost hidden if you don’t know they’re there.

But many others, even if small, ruin people’s property, and they end up out of pocket fixing the damage.

The same goes for ‘Taggers’ who think any clean space is a spot ‘their’ tag has to places, often ruining council street furniture, meaning our taxes are wasted dealing with the vandals ‘work’.

Admiring some buildings in Sauchiehall Street recently, I was sad to reflect that there had been no past story in the news about a vandal being scraped off the road, and taken away in bags.

Those knowledgeable in Glasgow tales will know the building featured was once a piano showroom, and has a bust of Beethoven over the rear entrance in Renfrew Street. It later became a cinema, seating 400 to more than 600 at one time, which lasted until 1984. Its past is too long to detail here, but it’s an interesting building.

It’s neighbour to the Royal Highland Fusiliers Museum, I mentioned recently.

No idea about its current appearance – it gives a Facecrook link (which I will not touch) and the web page is dead, so it might be too (it looks it).

So, this was the first I saw of the problem.

Sauchiehall Street Vandalism

Sauchiehall Street Vandalism

Now that I’m getting better at it, I like to play with perspective correction, and got a chance with the front view.

Spotted the problem yet?

Glasgow Sauchiehall Street Vandalism Perspective Play

Glasgow Sauchiehall Street Vandalism Perspective Play

Last clue – and why I was sad there was no media coverage of a Sauchiehall Street high fall splat.

If the courts can’t deal with this rubbish effectively, surely Darwin could remove them from the gene pool.

Sauchiehall Street Vandalism Even Closer

Sauchiehall Street Vandalism Even Closer


Thanks for the anon pointer to this.

Lovely way to end a high fall.

Graffiti Killer

Graffiti Killer

Nov 21, 2018 Posted by | Civilian, photography | , , | Leave a comment

Have metal thieves just become vandals?

It seems to be some time since I’ve been fed any stories of scum stealing any type of metal from memorials.

At one time it felt as if such stories were popping up almost weekly in the media, but I can’t recall coming across any recently.

I know various laws were being introduced, together with other tweaks to make trading in scrap metal more accountable, and for legit traders at least, remove the cash-in-hand option.

There were some articles at the time, but nothing since, so I can’t say if these changes were effective, or circumvented.

However, one thing I do think has become more frequent is the appearance of stories regarding mindless attacks and vandalism of war memorials.

I may be doing something along the lines of adding two and two and getting five, but with the most recent report from Brechin, I was nudged into wondering if thwarted metal thieves were just having a go at places where they once found the stock of their illicit trade, or were maybe telling their kids what to do, and vandalise memorial sites, just to make themselves feel ‘better’, and spoil things for others.

“YOU spoiled things for us, so we’ll spoil things for you!”

No proof or otherwise that this is the case – just some idle rambling about a coincidence which has no basis in a causal link, just speculating. There are, unfortunately, many people who see memorials as an easy target for their deluded ideas.

Anger as Brechin WW1 commemorative artwork vandalised

Vandalised Brechin Memorial Art BBC Pic Credit Philip Ramshaw

Vandalised Brechin Memorial Art BBC Pic Credit Philip Ramshaw

Nov 15, 2018 Posted by | World War I, World War II | , , | Leave a comment

Vandalised mural in Greenfield Park

Greenfield Park isn’t really on any of my wandering routes, so if I ever get tos see what’s in there, I have to make a definite detour, and divert into the place.

I wandered along one of the paths that seemed to lead back to the houses, and found this mural on one of the perimeter walls, maybe backing onto some garages, but I’m not sure.

As I walked along, I spotted some sort of picture on the wall, and I’m guessing it was made by some kids from the nearby school.

Simple enough, out of the way, done by kids – but still no respect shown by the usual dross of taggers and vandals.

Click for slightly bigger.

Greenfield Park Vandalised Mural

Greenfield Park Vandalised Mural

Aug 4, 2018 Posted by | Civilian, photography | , , | Leave a comment

Looks like the vandals have finally found Tollcross Winter Gardens

One of the mildly surprising observations that could have been made over the years since Tollcross Winter Gardens and Visitor Centre were closed after the 2010/2011 storms is the lack of vandalism that was apparent over the following years.

But a walk past the building as we move into 2018 suggests this is no longer the case, and it looks as if the vandals have decided it’s worth the effort of getting to the buildings and working through the (remaining) glass.

While I haven’t counted the broken or dislocated panes of glass around the glasshouse, the MKI eyeball hasn’t noted the number of missing and damages panes being as obviously scattered around on previous visits.

Similarly, while the last visit simply noted an attack on the doors of the Visitor Centre, on this occasion the doors were noted to have been blocked off by the addition of wooden panels, making it obvious that the glass had been smashed through since that visit.

At this rate, the place can’t have many years left if it is to be saved, or it will reach the stage where it has to be cleared merely to make it safe.

Tollcross Winter Gardens Broken Glass

Tollcross Winter Gardens Broken Glass


Tollcross Winter Gardens Visitor Centre Broken Glass

Tollcross Winter Gardens Visitor Centre Broken Glass

Apr 12, 2018 Posted by | Civilian, council, photography | , | Leave a comment

Daldowie Doocot ruined by dumpers

I recently posted some recent pics of the resited Daldowie Doocot, noting how it appeared to have become neglected after the fanfare of its rescue and move, and is more likely to have drinkers smashing bottles around it than tourists dropping in for a look.

Even if they do make the effort, visitors who make the trip no longer have a car park as that had to be blocked off thanks to the attention of illegal dumpers who not only decided the secluded spot was ideal for them to carry out their activities hidden behind the trees, but also smashed the gate installed to prevent their entry.

I didn’t have the pics illustrating this to hand back then, but they turned up and a couple can be seen below, just to show I wasn’t making this up.

Daldowie Doocot Smashed Gate

Daldowie Doocot Smashed Gate

Attractive Doocot view.

Daldowie Doocot Car Park Dumped

Daldowie Doocot Car Park Dumped

And this was the time they sawed pieces out of the gate, so they could remove the chain which had been used to lock the gate, and then burst the locked bolt too.

Daldowie Doocot Sawn And Burst Car Park Gate

Daldowie Doocot Sawn And Burst Car Park Gate

Apr 4, 2018 Posted by | Civilian, photography | , , | Leave a comment

No chance of infection in Tollcross Park, just a spot of fungus

Funny how it’s possible to wander around a place and completely miss something in plain sight.

I’d never noticed this old drinking fountain before, yet it lies near at least one path within the park.

I understand most, if not all, of these fountains have been killed off for fear of their being a potential source of infection, and sharing nasty diseases between users. At one time, they were numerous.

As can be seen, it has not only been disabled, but also smashed. Whether the latter is down to the park, or vandals, is unclear. Regardless, nobody’s going to be using this one.

Then again, it may have been a cunning plan by the scurrilous vendors of one of today’s greatest scandals – BOTTLED WATER – as they systematically destroyed all free sources of water to boost their criminal sales. But, that’s another story.

Tollcross Drinking Fountain Wrecked

Tollcross Drinking Fountain Wrecked

A wander around the remains revealed a fortunate survivor of this particular wrecking effort, including discovery of full details of the manufacturer.

Tollcross Drinking Fountain Detail

Tollcross Drinking Fountain Detail

One day, I’ll not only ready up on the definition of the difference between mushrooms and toadstools… I’ll also REMEMBER it!

So just have this bonus pic taken nearby, and we’ll settle for ‘fungus’ to save time.

Tollcross Park Tree Fungus

Tollcross Park Tree Fungus


Let’s not miss a chance to embarrass those in charge of this mess…

Which didn’t get the benefit of a SINGLE PENNY from the sham fiasco of the LASTING LEGACY of the 2014 GLASGOW COMMONWEALTH SHAMES.

Tollcross Winter Gardens January 2017

Tollcross Winter Gardens January 2017

Oct 19, 2017 Posted by | Civilian, Lost, photography | , , , | Leave a comment

There was a 10 k run for men (I forgot)

Well this is irritating, or maybe embarrassing.

I fell ‘Under the Weather’ a while back, and forgot about quite a few interesting pics I’d collected. While most are not time relevant, it seems this one was. Unfortunately, it seems I accumulated quite a few such things, and will have to dig them up and post them.

There seem to be a growing number of adverts being painted onto our pavements, hopefully a vile practice that will not grow, or if it does, will be crushed by officialdom before it becomes excessive. The only good point I see at the moment is that they are generally placed by official organisations, which can be held responsible, and are created using water-based paints with short lives.

If the same scum that spams the web decides this is a good idea (and I already see activist groups with their own questionable agendas are using the method) then we may see not only every wall, pole, lamppost, or similar have illegal fly-posted adverts slapped on them, but also the ground we walk on, and not with degradable paints either.

And the council does little to clear the existing abuse, so I doubt the culprits would have much to fear.

I may be late, and forget where I tripped over this one, such is the amount of time which has passed (well, somewhere around Parkhead or Tollcross), and don’t even remember seeing it mentioned in the news.

Hopefully NOT one of many, or of more to come. (The advert, not the run!)

Pavement Ad Painted 10k Men's Run

Pavement Ad Painted 10k Men’s Run

Maybe all this needs is a few complaints, and this might suffer the same fate as the poor chap who tried to find a girlfriend by throwing a few ‘Messages in a Bottle’ into the sea – and ended up with grumpy locals reporting him for, would you believe… LITTERING!

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

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