The Scottish Difference…

…or “Just Ignore the Spelling Error for a Minute”.

On Saturday I went a walk into town, and I saw this sign:


I thought it was unusual to see this sign in the middle of Glasgow’s Sauchiehall Street. It’s location wasn’t unusual: Club520 was doomed when one of it’s acts threatened an audience member on it’s opening night. But, a leasehold? In the middle of Glasgow? I was intrigued. In Scotland you don’t generally get leaseholds (which is akin to total ownership of a piece of land but for a certain length of time). In a few remoter places they do still exist, but not in the middle of big cities. I wondered if I was wrong and, as a fun little quirk of things, there was one. So I asked:

Being truthful, I was kinda hoping that it was a quirk. I like it when things are just a little bit different, a bit like “There are no ‘streets’ in Drumchapel”. But, alas:

It seems it was just a mistake after all. Although, it is a mistake that demonstrates a common problem. People don’t appreciate the Scottish Difference. The sign should should have read “Lease”, or the more common “To Let”, but “Leasehold” is similar and nobody noticed it’s actually very different. Christie & Co are a International firm based in London, so they are allowed to drop the ball every now and then. But, at least they accepted their mistake and are going to change it – and for this I applaud them:

We need more like them.

The Scottish Government actually suffer from a similar issue earlier this year. In their Programme For Government 2014-15, they misspelled “moveables” as “movables” every time it appeared in the paper. The latter is the ‘correct’ spelling, but the former is the legal term for most property that is not land or houses. If a government can’t get it right, what can we expect?


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