Friday, 10 February 2012

The Commonwealth 2014 Games Bid and the Unison Day Centre Cuts Demo; when Worlds Collide

Welcome to my wee photoblog on Glasgow, where we feature the  joys and unjoys of walking and cycling through a fascinating, beautiful and often badly run city. For the blog's origin and a  list of all posts see the  'Introduction' post  -

Today is  9 November  2007 and we have stepped back in time to the City Halls where the result of the Glasgow bid to host the 2014 Commonwealth Games is about to be heard.

The Duke of Wellington outside GoMA with his traffic cone on his head; the acceptable, cosy, PC symbol of dissent in Scotland. See

Hutchesons' Hall on left, built 1805

We are heading this direction, east along Ingram St

Looking back at GoMA; the building was built in  1778 on the profits from the slave plantations in Jamaica. Big smile there from SpongeBob

Caught up with the Unison demo, which is a protest against the council's cuts affecting carers

For the wiki entry on  the bid see

From Wiki: 'The Glasgow bid for the 2014 Commonwealth Games was the successful bid to host the 2014 Commonwealth Games by the city of Glasgow, Scotland. It beat the Abuja 2014 Commonwealth Games bid to host the games, which will be held over 11 days, with the opening ceremony on 23 July 2014, and the last day of competition and closing ceremony on 3 August 2014.'

City Halls down there on  the left, where Scotland's  great and good - and the not found out yet - are awaiting the result of Glasgow's bid to host the 2014 Commonwealth Games. The opposition is Abuja in Nigeria. The city has a history of dark deals and corrupt government - as of course does Abuja

A few cops scooting about on bikes

Two uniforms striding purposefully there on the left

One of the organisers begins singing 'We're standing for Abuja, We shall not be moved'. Not a great deal of enthusiaism for the bid among the carers threatened with cuts

The light is beautiful

A tourist bus appears - greeted with much merriment by the protestors

Glasgow has won. Inside the City Halls Alex Salmond is hugging the Tory leader Annabel Goldie, the Lib Dems are hugging each other and the Labourites are hugging anybody who'll have them. The BBC's report can be found here -

with no mention of the Unison demo, the most under-reported demo in Glasgow I can think of for its size and significance. From the BBC report -

'The leader of Glasgow City Council, Steven Purcell, was in Sri Lanka to hear the final decision. He said: "We've struck gold for Glasgow but the hard work starts from here. This is not about politicians taking glory, or about the sporting world coming to Glasgow on its own. It's about making sure there is a lasting legacy. A legacy for the people of the east end of the city who will benefit from first class housing, retail and leisure developments in a city that's been crying out for that kind of change." '

Purcell of course was to be shortly caught striking his own sort of gold :

Purcell was never tried. In a very Scottish solution to the business, the question of the civic leader of one of Europe's great cities buying his cocaine in the Boundary Bar  - which you can see here -

was allowed to just fade away. Consensus and cover up - it's the Scottish way, whether in Glasgow or in Holyrood, whether in urban councils or in the Kirk of Eck

For the beginning of the construction work for the Games and an eviction involving Jeremy Paxman's granny's old house, see

And it's business as usual in 2012 in Glasgow

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Reviews of Scotland: 1000 Things You Need to Know


'I love it - I'm giving this copy to a friend and buying another for myself' - Darren Adam, Presenter, Radio Forth, 17 November 2008

‘It’s a great wee book’ – Stephen Jardine, introducing Edwin Moore on Scottish Television’s Five-Thirty Show

'A fantastic book' - Scott Wilson , talk 107 Breakfast Show host

'A great read' - Dougie Jackson, Drivetime host, Smooth Radio 105.2


'Despite its apparently humorous format, this is a serious and extensive dictionary on all things Scottish; from Jean Redpath to Lorne sausage, from Flodden to the Corries. Is particularly good on history and minutiae. There's a useful chapter on famous Scottish legal cases and another on literature. Excellent' - Royal Scottish Legion, Feb 2009

'This is the ultimate Scottish reference book' - Waterstones Christmas catalogue, 2008

'This is a fascinating look at the history of Scotland: its languages, politics and great achievements, from its origins in the ancient landmass of Laurentia 400 million years ago, to devolution and Billy Connolly. Edwin Moore has collected a thousand important facts about this beautiful country, covering Scottish history and culture, correcting misconceptions, and examining the mysteries of haggis and bagpipes with insight, warmth and impressive attention to detail' - The Good Book Guide, November 2008

'This is a recipe for revealing how horribly ill informed you are about your country. Although, if you are skillful, you can nod sagely as you read some new fact and mutter 'Ah, yes!' as if recalling the information from your excellent schooling. Where else will you find a real recipe for making haggis from scratch side by side with a potted biography of David Hume; a section of the Declaration of Arbroath and the curiously touching fact that Lulu was only 15 when she had a hit with 'Shout'? The whole thing is of course, silly - but oh so addictive.' - Matthew Perren, i-on Glasgow, December 2008

'. . . well crafted and witty' - Bill Howatson, Aberdeen Press and Journal, 18 October 2008

‘While most of Edwin’s entries are entertaining and scholarly – he writes like a Scottish Bill Bryson – it is when he takes an interest in the backwaters of history, the details lost down the back of the sofa, that he is at his best’ – Jack McKeown, The Courier, 27 October 2008

'History, it is said, is written by the victors. Trivia, meanwhile, is written by the guys with the smeared spectacles and the breathable rainwear. The first discipline is linear and causal; to quote from Alan Bennett’s play The History Boys, history is “just one f****** thing after another”. Things look different, though, when viewed through the prism of trivia. The past is reduced to one big coleslaw of fascinating facts that in their randomness tell a more mixed-up tale entirely.
The first approach leads to big, frowning books by the likes of Tom Devine and Michael Fry. The latter results in small, cheerful books such as Scotland: 1,000 Things You Need to Know, Edwin Moore’s valiant attempt to navigate the more trivial contours of enlightenment and clearances, crown and parliament, dirt and deity.
Moore proceeds from a sincere and controversial first principle: Scotland is really a rather pleasant and interesting place. . .As a work of popular scholarship, though, it’s in a different league to the Scottish novelty titles that get stocked next to the bookstore tills as potential impulse purchases, those little handbooks of parliamo Caledonia and regional braggadocio, such as Weegies vs Edinbuggers.' - Allan Brown The Sunday Times, 21 September 2008

'In his book, Scotland: 1000 Things You Need to Know, Edwin celebrates all that sets us Scots as a race apart - our language, law, flora, food, and of course, our people. From our poets, architects and inventors, to our artists, entertainers and fighters. But he doesn't shy away from the more unpleasant aspects of our history. . .' - Robert Wight, Sunday Post, 14 September 2008

‘We think we know all about William Wallace, Robert the Bruce and the Union of the Crowms. However, according to Edwin Moore, author of , Scotland: 1000 Things You Need to Know, we’re still in the dark about many aspects of our history and culture. . . The Big Issue looks at 20 of the most astonishing examples of secret Scotland.’ – The Big Issue, 18-24 September 2008

'What's the connection between Homer Simpson and Larbert, and why are generations of lawyers grateful to a Paisley snail? Need to know more? Author Edwin Moore has gathered 1000 facts like these about Scotland in a quirky new book. Brian Swanson selects a few favourites. . .' - Scottish Daily Express, 13 September 2008

'The palm for Christmas-stocking books seems to have passed recently to popular science, with best selling titles every year such as Why Don’t Penguins’ Feet Freeze? This year there has been a gallant attempt at a historical fight back. Scotland: 1,000 Things You Need to Know(Atlantic Books, £12.99) asks (and answers) such post-turkey questions as ‘How many kings of Scotland died in their beds?’, ‘Who on earth decided that the Declaration of Arbroath was the cornerstone of modern democracy?’ or ‘Why is iron brew spelled Irn-Bru?’ Mark Mazower,History Today; The Best of History in 2008, December 2008

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