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Young Scot Awards tour rolls into Paisley

The Young Scot Awards bus visited Paisley Abbey today to urge locals to nominate their young heroes for the Sunday Mail Young Scot Awards and to support Paisley’s bid to become UK City of Culture 2021.

Paisley locals were out in force to cast their nominations and were entertained by a dance troop featuring HNC Dance students from West College Scotland.

The bus tour, sponsored by Scottish CityLink, continues its journey around Scotland for the fifth year running to encourage people across the country to nominate their local heroes for the Sunday Mail Young Scot Awards 2017.

Now in its twelfth year, the Awards celebrate the contributions and work of young people age 11 – 26 across 12 categories including health, community, the arts and diversity. From hundreds of entries, three finalists will be chosen in each of the 12 categories. The winners will be announced at a glittering ceremony at the Clyde Auditorium in Glasgow on 27 April 2017.

Louise Macdonald, Chief Executive of Young Scot, said: “We’ve already received hundreds of inspirational nominations and I know there are hundreds more out there. It’s fantastic to have support from Paisley to celebrate the inspirational achievements of young people.  We want everyone across Scotland to get nominating so we can give young scots the praise they deserve!”

Councillor Mark Macmillan, Chair of the Paisley 2021 Partnership Board, said: “It was great to see Young Scot bring their bus to Paisley Abbey – the organisation are already on board as supporters of the Paisley 2021 City of Culture bid and their support is much appreciated.

“The Awards help celebrate inspiring achievements and I would encourage everybody in Renfrewshire to check out the Young Scot Award categories and consider who could be nominated – we know Renfrewshire’s young people have some fascinating stories to tell and it would be great to see some local winners”.

Young Scot is urging people to nominate at youngscotawards.com before the voting closes on 27 February 2017.

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MSP Derek: Paisley deserves to win 2021 title

Paisley’s bid to be UK City of Culture 2021 has had some more high-level backing – after local MSP Derek Mackay threw his weight behind the town’s ambitions.

In the latest show of cross-party support for the bid, Renfrewshire North and West MSP Derek says the town deserves the title and believes the Paisley 2021 campaign has ‘captured the imagination’ of people across the area.

Derek – also the Scottish Government Cabinet Secretary for Finance and the Constitution – was speaking during a series of videos now available on the Paisley 2021 YouTube channels.

He said: “I am very positive about Paisley and always have been – it’s the town I was born in. I think Paisley is very deserving to win UK City of Culture 2021– it has the passion, the pride and the people.

“The events that are taking place are wonderful and they’ve grown over a number of years – there is a sense of that cultural renaissance making a difference.

“The bid has captured the imagination of many people right across the county – and indeed across the country eyes are on Paisley and Renfrewshire.

“It’s a fantastic, positive, energised campaign which is all about people, and people should be involved in whatever way they can.

“Be part of it and enjoy it as well because the bid is about being positive about Paisley and it’s great fun too.”

Paisley’s bid is due to be lodged at the end of April with the competition organisers, the Department of Culture, Media and Sport – and the town will find out if it has made the shortlist in the summer.

The bid has already received cross-party political backing at well-attended parliamentary receptions at both Westminster and Holyrood.

Over the next few months, bid leaders will be pushing ahead with plans to generate as much local-level support for the campaign as possible.

Councillor Mark Macmillan, Renfrewshire Council Leader and chair of the Paisley 2021 Partnership Board, added: “From the start we said this bid would be by the people of Paisley for the people of Paisley.

“Over the past year, thousands of local people have taken part in conversations around the bid to help shape it, and we recently saw the 2021st person ‘push the button’ on our website to support for the campaign.

“A successful bid could help transform Renfrewshire’s fortunes – but for that to happen we need even more of you to help show the judges that Paisley wants the title, needs the title, and can deliver it.

“You can find out more about how you can get involved at paisley2021.co.uk.”

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Annual memorial service held for those lost to suicide

Those lost to suicide were commemorated in a special service held at Renfrewshire House yesterday (26 Jan).

(L-R) Douglas Johnston, Choose Life Co-Ordinator, Deacon Jack Gallacher, Renfrewshire’s Provost Anne Hall and Reverend Alan Birss

Renfrewshire support group Survivors of Bereavement by Suicide (SOBS) hosted the annual service at the memorial tree which resides in the council grounds.

The service was attended by Renfrewshire’s Provost Anne Hall, Reverend Alan Birss and Deacon Jack Gallacher as well as members of the local community.

Reverend Birss and Deacon Gallacher led a short set of readings, followed by a procession to the memorial tree at which Provost Hall laid a wreath of remembrance.

Renfrewshire’s Provost Anne Hall lays a wreath of remembrance

Community members were then able to place a purple heart on the tree to commemorate the loved one they have lost.

A community member places a purple heart onto the tree

Following the service all those attending were invited to join the Provost, the local SOBS support group and the Choose Life team for light refreshments in Paisley Abbey.

Provost Hall said: “The memorial tree is an opportunity for those who have lost a loved one to remember them- whilst also providing a place for them to visit throughout the year.

“I encourage anyone who is having suicidal thoughts or has lost someone to suicide to seek the help that is available- such as the local SOBS group or the Choose Life team.

“Seeking help can make all the difference and it is important to know that you are not alone.”

The memorial tree was first dedicated in 2010 as a permanent memorial to those who have died through suicide and is believed to have been the first of its kind in Scotland.

The service aims to provide an opportunity to remember those who have been lost while providing an arm of support to the survivors. It’s also an opportunity to connect with others who have faced a similar situation.

Lisa Aitken, Choose Life Resource Worker, said: “The annual service has become crucial to the local community and it’s important that those who need it have this outlet.

“The local SOBS group provides a safe place for those who have been affected by suicide to find support from others who have faced similar heartbreak and can offer guidance to those who are feeling low.

“All are welcome to come along to our next meeting and become a part of the group.”

The local support group meets on the last Wednesday of the month, 7:00pm-8:30pm, at the Wynd Centre, Paisley and new members are always welcome.

For more information contact the Choose Life Team on 0141 849 2200 or visit www.renfrewshire.gov.uk/sobs.

If you are feeling suicidal, or you know someone that might be then please call one of the helpline numbers: Samaritan’s 116 123, Breathing Space 0800 83 85 87, RAMH First Crisis 0141 849 90 90 or 0500 829 093

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Paisley to Monte Carlo Classic Rally Photographs

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Service of Dedication to remember those lost to suicide

An annual memorial service to commemorate those who have lost their lives to suicide will be held in Paisley next week.

The memorial tree

Renfrewshire support group Survivors of Bereavement by Suicide (SOBS) will be holding a short service open to all on Thursday 26 January.

The service will be attended by Renfrewshire Provost Anne Hall, Reverend Alan Birss and Deacon Jack Gallacher and will be held in the Marriage Suite of Renfrewshire House.

Renfrewshire’s Provost Anne Hall lays a remembrance wreath

Friends and relatives are invited to meet at the Marriage Suite from 3:15pm to collect a commemorative purple heart on which they can write a message to a loved one, if so desired.

At 3:30pm there will be a short set of readings followed by a procession to the memorial tree where the Provost will lay a wreath and light the tree.

The memorial tree was first dedicated in 2010 as a permanent memorial to those who have died through suicide and is believed to have been the first of its kind in Scotland.

A girl places a purple heart on the tree in remembrance

Following the service all those attending are cordially invited to join the Provost, the local SOBS support group and the Choose Life team for light refreshments in Paisley Abbey.

The service aims to provide an opportunity to remember those who have been lost while providing an arm of support to the survivors. It is an opportunity to connect with others who have faced a similar situation.

Provost Hall said: “The annual service provides those who have been affected by suicide a chance to commemorate their loved ones and also find support from others who have faced similar heartbreak.

“I would encourage anyone who feels this may benefit them to come along and join me at the service as we remember those lost too soon.”

The local support group meets on the last Wednesday of the month, 7:00pm-8:30pm, at the Wynd Centre, Paisley and new members are always welcome.

Lisa Aitken, Choose Life Resource Worker, said: “It is important that we remember those lost to suicide and also support those who have been affected by the loss of a loved one.

“The annual service provides an opportunity for people to meet others who have faced similar difficulties and all are welcome to attend.”

For more information contact the Choose Life Team on 0141 849 2200 or visit www.renfrewshire.gov.uk/sobs.

If you are feeling suicidal, or you know someone that might be then please call one of the helpline numbers: Samaritan’s 116 123, Breathing Space 0800 83 85 87, RAMH First Crisis 0141 849 90 90 or 0500 829 093

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Abbey Place

MAKING the decision to move home isn’t one that is taken lightly – particularly when the time comes to considering downsizing your property. However, should you find yourself searching for a home that is more suitable to your needs, the team at Link Group is on hand to help.

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Would you or someone you know like the convenience of living within walking distance of Paisley Town Centre? If you are over the age of 60 and are looking to downsize, the beautiful bright and spacious properties at Abbey Place offers a fantastic independent living option. The New Supply Shared Equity (NSSE) scheme can help low to moderate income households buy a new build home developed as part of the Scottish Government’s Affordable Housing Supply Programme.

Link Group is delighted to have the last few remaining, one bedroom properties available within this brand new property, which overlooks the Paisley Abbey. The stunning flats are neutrally decorated, fitted with modern kitchens and bathrooms and also have a communal living space, guest bedroom and designated part-time property care assistant on hand.

Mr and Mrs Turner are absolutely delighted with their new flat and have particularly noticed a huge improvement in the heating of the flat compared to what they were in previously. Mrs Turner said: “I love it, it has made a huge difference to our lives.”

Don’t miss the Link Group open days on Thursday, December 15 from 10.30am until 3pm or visit our stand in the Paisley Shopping Centre on Wednesday, December 21 where we can answer any questions you may have. In the meantime, for more information, contact Claire at Link Group on 0330 303 0125 or visit http://bit.do/AbbeyPlace

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Renfrewshire Remembers

Communities across Renfrewshire are preparing for a weekend of Remembrance.

Renfrewshire’s Provost Anne Hall, who will be attending the Children’s Remembrance Service and the Armistice Service in Paisley, said:  “This is a time when the community comes together to reflect on and honour the service of our armed forces past and present.

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“Renfrewshire has a proud military tradition.  The services of commemoration give an opportunity for all of us to remember those who sacrificed so much for past and future generations.”

The proceedings start on Friday 11 November with the  Annual Renfrewshire Children’s Remembrance  Service.

Children from two Renfrewshire primary schools – Williamsburgh and St John Ogilvie – will join young musicians and military, civic and church representatives for a service in Paisley Abbey at 10.15, followed by the Two Minute Silence at 11am.

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The event has been organised by Renfrewshire Council and the Royal British Legion Scotland, Paisley Comrades.

A number of commemorative events have been arranged for Sunday Nov 13 at cenotaphs or war memorials.

These include:
Start    Finish (Approx)
Renfrew    9.45am    10.30am
Houston    10.00am    10.30am
Kilbarchan    10.00am    10.30am
Paisley    10.45am    11.30am
Lochwinnoch    10.45am    11.15am
Johnstone    12.30pm    1.00pm
Howwood    12.45pm    1.15pm
Elderslie    2.30pm    3.00pm
Bridge of Weir    3.00pm    3.30pm

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Paisley skyline sees an explosion of colour

Thousands of revellers saw Paisley’s historic skyline bathed in colour as the annual fireworks extravaganza returned on Saturday.

photos courtesy of Anna Koufogianni on behalf of www.paisley.org.uk

photos courtesy of Anna Koufogianni on behalf of www.paisley.org.uk

Almost 30,000 people descended on the town centre for the annual Fireworks Spectacular- hosted by Renfrewshire Council- as part of an afternoon full of family fun and activities.

The magnificent Paisley Abbey provided a stunning backdrop as crowds filled the streets around Abbey Close to get the best view of the outstanding display.

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The fireworks were launched from the roof of the council building on Cotton Street and came at the end of a packed day of entertainment in the town centre.

Hosted by the Captial FM DJs, the stage in Abbey Close featured a variety of local bands including The Turkey Nuts, Start, Kong and The Vanities.

Also putting on a performance were musicians Sam Holloway, Lisa Kowalski, Rachelle and Brittany Davies and Andrew Quinn- while Gerry Lyons kept the crowd entertained with a 60s and 70s DJ set specially mixed and choreographed for the fireworks display.

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During the afternoon, families and kids enjoyed free activities Paisley Town Hall as part of an exciting programme of entertainment.

Paisley Fireworks Spectacular is part of the push towards Paisley’s bid for UK City of Culture 2021 and is one of many events in an exciting winter events programme, with the Paisley Christmas Lights following on Saturday 12 November- headlined this year by triple-platinum selling band Scouting for Girls.

Renfrewshire Council Leader Mark Macmillan said: “It’s fantastic to see so many people coming into Paisley town centre for one of the flagship events of our winter programme.

“We’re working hard to regenerate Paisley and events such as this bring fantastic footfall into the area and give a boost to the local economy.

“The fireworks were once again a magnificent spectacle and topped off a fantastic family-orientated day.”

The fireworks event was sponsored by the Paisley Centre, Intu Braehead, Renfrewshire Leisure and Invest in Renfrewshire.

For more information on future Renfrewshire events, visit www.renfrewshire.gov.uk/events.

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Paisley lights the fuse on fireworks spectacular

The Paisley skyline will be awash with colour this Saturday as the annual fireworks display returns with a bang.

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Thousands will descend on the town centre for a full day of family activities as the winter events programme in Renfrewshire continues.

The excitement kicks-off at 2pm when the Capital FM DJs take to the main stage on Gauze Street to introduce an afternoon of music and live entertainment.

A variety of local bands and artists will showcase their talents including Matthew Gibb, Lisa Kowalski, The Turkey Nuts and The Vanities.

The Paisley and Piazza shopping centres will also play host to free children’s activities throughout the afternoon.

The fireworks will be launched at 7pm from the top of Renfrewshire Council’s headquarters on Cotton Street, with the best views for the public set to be in Abbey Close and Gauze Street.

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Residents should be aware there will be a series of road closures implemented from early on Saturday morning onwards in the area around Gauze Street, Cotton Street and High Street, with parts of Seedhill Road and Causeyside Street to be closed from mid-afternoon on Saturday until after the event.

Mill Street will also be closed temporarily between 6.45pm and 8pm to ensure the safety of the public but with minimal disruption to traffic.

Renfrewshire Council Leader Mark Macmillan said: “Every year the fireworks display attracts tens of thousands of people into Paisley as we light up the historic skyline.

“There is always a vibrant atmosphere around the town and I would encourage everyone, from families to visitors, to join in the experience of a major event in the town centre.

“Our winter events programme is just one part of the push towards our bid for UK City of Culture 2021 and demonstrates Paisley’s capability to hold large scale events- a key requirement for the winning bidder.”

The fireworks display follows last weekend’s two day ‘spooktacular’ held in Paisley town centre to celebrate Halloween and precedes the switching on of the Christmas lights in Paisley, Johnstone and Renfrew.

The Paisley switch on will be headlined this year on Saturday 12 November by triple-platinum selling artists Scouting for Girls, known for their top 10 singles ‘She’s So Lovely’ and ‘It’s Not About You’.

They will be supported by up-and-coming local bands on the main stage.

Paisley Fireworks Spectacular is sponsored by intu Braehead and the Paisley Shopping Centre.

Full details of this, and future, events are available online at ww.renfrewshire.gov.uk/events

For more information on Paisley’s bid and how you can get behind it, visit www.Paisley2021.co.uk.

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Thousands enjoy Paisley’s Halloween spooktacular

Paisley enjoyed an explosion of light, sound and activity at the weekend when thousands of visitors descended on the town centre for the annual Halloween festival.

Halloween Festival MFG
The hugely-popular annual event – taking place as part of the build-up to Paisley’s bid for Uk City of Culture 2021 – kicked off on Friday evening with a lantern-lit parade through the town centre led by the stunning Spark! LED drummers.

That continued in Abbey Close itself with a fire garden run by outdoor arts specialists Walk the Plank, featuring fire-breathing sculptures and spooky illuminations.

There was also lots for kids in Paisley Town Hall, with Halloween arts and crafts, a family disco, storytelling, puppet shows and music sessions with Feis Phaislig.

Halloween Festival MFG
Most of the same activities returned on the Saturday but with the addition of a main stage featuring live music from local musicians and dance groups, and entertainment from Pulse FM DJs.

Both days also saw a funfair, street entertainers and a great selection of outdoor food vendors.

Halloween Festival MFG
Groups involved over the weekend includes Independent State of Happiness, Right To Dance, Street Stuff, Floor4orce, Solid Rock Cheerleaders and Rock Us Community Choir.

There was also a special event in the run-up to the Halloween festival, with Paisley Town Hall hosting the world premiere of a new performance by award-winning visual theatre artist Al Seed.

The show – a dark gothic melodrama inspired by Edgar Allan Poe’s The Raven – was one of the first to be funded by Renfrewshire’s Culture, Heritage and Events fund, aimed at boosting the local creative scene ahead of the Paisley 2021 bid.

The event was organised by Renfrewshire Council, and council leader Mark Macmillan said: “Once again, the Halloween festival made for a fantastic spectacle in the heart of the town.

“The event has been hugely popular since it started two years ago and has helped bring thousands of visitors into the town, boosting local trade.

“It was also good to see so many local cultural groups involved – and with Paisley’s bid for UK City of Culture 2021 due to be submitted in a few months time, it was once again a great showcase of the flourishing creative scene we have here.”

Renfrewshire’s major winter events programme continues with the Paisley Fireworks display (Sat 5 Nov) and Christmas Lights Switch-on (Sat 12 Nov).