, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

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.”

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Paisley to Monte Carlo Classic Rally Photographs

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Paisley ready to bid as UK City of Culture competition launches

The team behind Paisley’s bid to be UK City of Culture say the town will be ready to host the 2021title – after the UK Government today fired the starting gun on the competition.

Paisley Town Hall lit up in support of the bid

The Department for Culture, Media and Sport today formally launched the 2021 competition, with bids due in for 28 April, and the winner to be announced at the end of the year.

The guidelines were announced by Minister for Digital and Culture Matt Hancock MP during a visit to Hull, the current holders of the title, which runs every four years.

Paisley’s unique assets include the globally-recognised Paisley Pattern, Scotland’s second-highest concentration of listed buildings, and an internationally significant museum collection, including the world’s largest collection of Paisley shawls.

The town also offers a thriving contemporary cultural scene, a highly-regarded university, international airport, and PACE, one of the UK’s largest youth theatre groups.

Paisley officially launched its intention to bid in November 2015 and the year since has seen an outpouring of support from the local community and beyond, including:

– more than 8,000 local people taking part in conversations around the bid;

– messages of support from homegrown cultural icons such as singer Paolo Nutini and playwright John Byrne;

– backing from more than 100 businesses, including Glasgow Airport, intu Braehead and the University of the West of Scotland;

– 70 million opportunities to see or hear something positive about Paisley, helping change perceptions and the tone of conversation about the town;

– cross-party political support, with an event at Westminster and one of the best –attended parliamentary receptions in the history of the Scottish Parliament;

Councillor Mark Macmillan, chair of the Paisley 2021 partnership board and Renfrewshire Council Leader, said: “We would like to thank DCMS for giving us the chance to bid for this title – we hope to use it to transform the area’s fortunes, bringing massive economic benefits and a lasting social and cultural legacy.

“The first week of Hull’s UK City of Culture year saw 342,000 visitors to the city – that is scale of boost this title could bring.

“Paisley’s name was once carried across the world thanks to the Pattern and its status as the one-time home of the global thread industry – for its size, the town’s contribution to the world has been massive.

“This bid will retell Paisley’s unique story to the world, while showing the judges Paisley wants the title, needs the title and can deliver it.”

Jean Cameron, Paisley 2021 Bid Director, added: “Over the past year we have had wonderful backing from the people of Paisley – and our thriving creative community has been at the heart of that.

“In that time we have seen a new sense of confidence and awareness of everything Paisley has to offer – and we will distil that into a bid which shows DCMS how we plan to harness the power of culture to make people’s lives better.

“We would also like to wish all the best to all the other cities who will be joining us on the bidding journey.”

Amanda McMillan, managing director of Glasgow Airport, said: “Securing UK City of Culture status would have a hugely positive effect on Paisley and everyone at Glasgow Airport is fully behind the bid.

“As well as providing a nationwide platform to showcase the town’s rich cultural heritage, it would also create a legacy of enduring civic pride for the people of Paisley.

“There’s no doubt a successful bid would play a significant role in boosting inbound tourism, so having an international airport serving more than nine million passengers just minutes from the town centre can only be to Paisley’s advantage.

“We hope our continued support can help play a part and wish the bid team good luck.”

Professor Craig Mahoney, Principal and Vice-Chancellor of University of the West of Scotland (UWS), said: “UWS is extremely proud to be one of the key partners of Paisley 2021.

“The university has already contributed to a number of initiatives related to the bid including an innovative digital art exhibition at Paisley Museum, which was commissioned by UWS in support of the bid.

“University staff are also playing an integral part in bid planning and delivery. We are excited about being part of the process and continuing to work with our partners to showcase Paisley.”

David Wallace, managing director of PACE theatre company and chair of the Creative Renfrewshire Network said, “The past year has been phenomenal in terms of taking pride in and perceptions of Paisley to a new level.

“The young people in the company now talk excitedly about their town and the competition launch brings their dream of a creative future one step closer.”

Although Paisley is not a city, the competition is open to large towns and urban areas, so as Scotland’s largest town, Paisley is equipped to apply and win.

Gavin Newlands, MP for Paisley and Renfrewshire North, said:

“The firing gun has now been fired and the race to be named UK City of Culture in 2021 can now truly begin.

“The team behind Paisley’s bid to be named UK City of Culture 2021 have been working hard for the past year, showcasing everything that our town has to offer and detailing the transformational impact that would come from Paisley being awarded this prestigious title.

“I know from my work promoting the town in Westminster that there is a lot of interest in Paisley, and I will continue to do everything in my power to help Paisley being awarded the title of UK City of Culture 2021.”

For more information about Paisley’s bid, see www.paisley2021.co.uk

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Paisley to host Scots Trad Music Awards in 2017

The Scots Trad Music Awards are to be held in Paisley in December 2017 for the first time.

The news was announced by event founder Simon Thoumire at this year’s Gala Concert and Awards Ceremony in Caird Hall, Dundee on Saturday, December 3.

2016-12-05_14-34-48
The BBC MG ALBA Scots Trad Awards are considered a major highlight in the traditional music calendar. The aim of the annual awards is to highlight Scotland’s wonderful traditional music in all its forms and to create a high profile opportunity that will shine a light on talent as well as the industry in general.

From its inception in 2003, the awards have steadily grown in popularity and prestige attracting television coverage by BBC ALBA in 2007 and major sponsorship from MG ALBA in 2008. This year’s awards will be broadcast to the world (via bbc.co.uk/alba) and it is hoped this will afford Scotland’s largest town an opportunity to share news of its bid to become UK City of Culture 2021 with a global audience.  

The is also further evidence that Paisley is capable of hosting high profile music events – it hosted both the British Pipe Band Championships and the Scottish Album of the Year Awards this year, with both returning in 2017.  

It is also proof of Paisley’s burgeoning music scene. Renfrewshire’s talents have featured heavily in the BBC MG ALBA Scots Trad Awards in recent years with The Scott Wood Band nominated for ‘Folk Band of the Year’ in 2014 while Johnstone Pipe Band are in contention for ‘Pipe Band of the Year’ this year (see separate release for results).

Simon Thoumire said, “Hands Up for Trad are really delighted that the 2017 Scots Trad Music Awards will be hosted by Paisley, currently bidding for the UK City of Culture title in 2021, home of The Spree, and the birth place of some of Scotland’s finest musical talent. We’re really looking forward to working with Renfrewshire Council to make the Scots Trad Music Awards in 2017 the best yet“.

Welcoming the Trad Awards announcement, Renfrewshire Council leader, Mark Macmillan, said, “We are delighted to be hosting the Trad Awards in 2017 and look forward to welcoming fans from all over the world. Paisley’s music scene is thriving, offering formal concerts and more impromptu gigs in local cafes, bars and restaurants, as organisers grow in confidence. Add several major music events in 2017 and the reasons to visit have grown enormously.”                      

For more information on the Scots Trad Music Awards visit: https://projects.handsupfortrad.scot/scotstradmusicawards/

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Young people’s Assembly wants focus on mental health issues

Mental health has emerged as the top issue for young people at a ground-breaking youth voice event hosted by Renfrewshire Council.

Renfrewshire Provost Anne Hall with young people and supporters at the first Renfrewshire Youth Assembly

Renfrewshire Provost Anne Hall with young people and supporters at the first Renfrewshire Youth Assembly

Young people at Renfrewshire’s first Youth Assembly overwhelmingly felt mental health was becoming a huge concern and believe more attention and awareness is required on the issue.

Around 300 young people from local secondary schools and youth groups made their voices heard on the views that matter to them at the Youth Assembly – Renfrewshire’s biggest single community youth forum event.

The exciting event – hosted by Renfrewshire Council’s Youth Services team with support from young people including Renfrewshire Youth Voice – saw people aged between 12 and 25 come together in Paisley Town Hall for a day of discussion on key issues alongside interactive workshops.

Renfrewshire’s Provost Anne Hall opened the event attended by community planning partner agencies – such as NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde, Police Scotland and Invest in Renfrewshire – and local and national third sector groups, including Young Scot, Zero Waste Scotland, Renfrewshire Young Carers, Active Communities, RE-EM, I am Me Scotland, Who Cares? Scotland and Erskine Music and Media Studio.

The gathering also saw active discussion on education, jobs and training, the 2021 City of Culture Bid and how to have a say in what happens in Renfrewshire. This was followed by workshops on recycling and environmental issues, how to use social media responsibly, mental health campaigns, such as Speak Your Mind from the Scottish Youth Parliament, and understanding hate crimes and discrimination.

The young people also planned out their ideas for a central youth hub where they could come together and meet, as well as providing ideas on what they would like to see in their own areas.

The Council’s Youth Services team aim to hold a Youth Assembly every year, but young people will continue to meet in smaller groups over the coming months to investigate the themes further.

Amy Chivers, 15, a pupil at Castlehead High School in Paisley, said: “The whole experience has been good to express my opinion. I’ve learned lots of different skills that are there for the future.

“I’ve also learned techniques on how to deal with stress, which will help me in my exams.”

Chloe Morrison, 15, who also attends Castlehead High School, said: “The workshops have been great. The social media one was my favourite as it told me how to get my ideas out there.

“I’ve also learned how to set goals and what is realistic to achieve.”

Councillor Jacqueline Henry, Convener of Renfrewshire Council’s Education and Children Policy Board, said: “This first Youth Assembly has been an amazing event.

“Renfrewshire’s young people have made it clear what matters to them and what they would like to see happening.

“This is just the beginning of a number of actions to ensure young people can have their say in shaping services in Renfrewshire through the issues that are important to them.

“Thanks go to all the young people who came along, passionately took part and wanted to make themselves heard and all the partners who supported us in this new venture.

“We look forward to supporting more young people to be heard and will work closely with partners to make sure we listen closely and shape our services accordingly.”

Any young person, group, or organisation who would like to be involved in the future can get in touch with Renfrewshire Council’s Youth Services tel 0141 889 1110 or email youth@renfrewshire.gov.uk

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Infrastructure plans approved to secure Renfrewshire’s long term economic growth

renfrewshire council logo .JPG

Plans to secure the long term economic growth of the area were approved by Renfrewshire councillors today following proposals for a £274 million investment in new infrastructure projects.

renfrewshire council logo .JPG

The three City Deal investments – the Glasgow Airport Access Project, Glasgow Airport Investment Area and Clyde Waterfront & Renfrew Riverside projects were approved by councillors today and will also be considered by Glasgow City Councillors before being given the green light by the Glasgow City Region Cabinet in December.

The projects are intended to significantly boost the local economy by attracting investment, supporting businesses and creating jobs.

Renfrewshire Council Leader Mark Macmillan, who holds the Glasgow City Region Cabinet’s enterprise portfolio, said:

“I am delighted Renfrewshire councillors have given their backing to this major investment programme which will create long term jobs and bring huge benefits not only to Renfrewshire’s local communities but right across our city region. In order for us to keep growing our economy, we need to create an attractive location for business that offers first class connections by land, sea and air, with excellent links across the Clyde and to our town and city centres. Together these projects will open up the area to tourism and businesses.”

The £39.1m Glasgow Airport Investment Area project would develop a world class business and commercial location right in the heart of Renfrewshire. It includes plans for the realignment of Abbotsinch Road, a new bridge across the White Cart, and new cycle routes, all aimed at improving connections between the Westway, Inchinnan and Airport Business Parks and as an enabler for the delivery of a world class business and commercial offering centred around the airport.

The Clyde Waterfront & Renfrew Riverside project would see the construction of a new opening bridge across the River Clyde. This £90.7m project would better link the communities of Renfrew, Yoker and Clydebank, with new roads and cycle routes giving people improved access to employment, education, health and leisure locations.

Plans for the £144m Glasgow Airport Access Project were also approved which will deliver a hybrid tram-train system to provide the long sought-after direct rail link between Glasgow Airport, Paisley and Glasgow City Centre.

A series of engagement events for these two projects will now take place to give people the chance to meet the project team and ask questions they may have regarding the initiatives.

Paisley Town Hall will hold an engagement event on Tuesday 6 December and a second will be held at Renfrew Town Hall on Wednesday 7 December.

As the proposed opening bridge linking the communities of Renfrew, Yoker and Clydebank that forms part of the Clyde Waterfront and Renfrew Riverside (CWRR) project affects communities north of the river, events will also take place at Yoker Community Campus on Monday 5 December and at Clydebank Town Hall on Thursday 8 December.

All four engagement events will be open from 11am to 7pm.

Anyone attending the events will also be able to see a video of plans for the separate Glasgow Airport Access Project, which will be considered alongside Renfrewshire’s other two City Deal projects by Councillors at Renfrewshire’s Leadership Board on 30 November then by the Glasgow City Region Cabinet on 13 December.

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Renfrewshire Youth Assembly gives new voice to local young people

HUNDREDS of young people from across Renfrewshire will tell Renfrewshire Council and its planning partners what really matters to them at a unique event later this month.  #RenYA

cover
Renfrewshire’s first Youth Assembly  will bring together around 300 young people aged between 12 and 25 in Paisley Town Hall on 29 November in what will be Renfrewshire’s biggest single community youth forum event .

The Council’s Youth Services team have been supporting 30 young people from local schools and other organisations over the past few months to create the event where delegates will set out their views on key local issues to the Council and Renfrewshire’s multi-agency Community Planning Partnership.

The event – planned by Renfrewshire Council-supported Renfrewshire Youth Voice – will look at topics including:

  • education, jobs, and training
  • social and cultural issues
  • 2021 City of Culture Bid
  • health and wellbeing
  • having a say in what happens in your community.

The aim is to hold a Youth Assembly every year, with young people meeting regularly in between to investigate the key themes further and figure out how to make a difference.

Among the issues they will look at is creating youth hubs and central youth meeting spaces as well as finding ways for young people to prevent or deal with anxiety and mental health problems.

Mark Dougan, Chair of Renfrewshire Youth Voice, said:
“The Youth Assembly will be a fantastic opportunity for young people to get involved and have their say on a range of issues young people face across Renfrewshire. It will be a fantastic day for youth representation.”

Mark Dougan

Mark Dougan

Councillor Jacqueline Henry, Convener of Renfrewshire Council’s Education and Children Policy Board, said: ”The Council is pushing ahead with a huge range of actions for our vision of making Renfrewshire a fantastic  place for everyone – including our young people – to live, work and invest. 

 “The Youth Assembly is a hugely important way to give young people their say in shaping the future of our community in Renfrewshire – and challenges any perception that ‘young people aren’t bothered.’

“It shows our young people that we value their opinions, and offers the young organisers from Renfrewshire Youth Voice a unique opportunity to be involved in designing and staging – with support from the Council’s Youth Services – an event of this scale and importance.

“The Assembly promises to be interactive, challenging, informative, and above all, will provide the foundations for action and positive change.
“This is an exciting chance for the young people of Renfrewshire to shout out about the things that matter to them and we are proud to support them in doing that. 

“We look forward to hearing what comes out of the event.”

The Assembly is not a walk-in event but any youth groups, young people or organisations who want to be involved in the ongoing process can get in touch with Renfrewshire Council’s Youth Services   tel 0141 889 1110 or email youth@renfrewshire.gov.uk

Follow news on and from the Youth Assembly on Facebook:  YoungRenfrewshire and on Twitter  #RenYA

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

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).

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Renfrewshire Council Leader urges Scottish Government to support reinvention of Paisley

renfrewshire council logo .JPG

Renfrewshire Council Leader, Mark Macmillan, has requested the Scottish Government make Paisley Town Centre a pilot area for a range of innovative initiatives which would help to reinvigorate the town and surrounding areas.

renfrewshire council logo .JPG

Councillor Macmillan has written to Kevin Stewart MSP, Minister for Local Government and Housing, following a meeting during the Scottish Town Planning Institute annual conference which took place in Paisley earlier this month. This gathering of planning experts from across Scotland coincided with the launch of Renfrewshire Council’s Economic Framework (REF) and Paisley Town Centre – 10 Year Action Plan (PTCAP) strategies.

Both documents have a key role to play in the Council’s commitment to building a better Renfrewshire for all through the delivery of economic regeneration and its associated social benefits.

The PTCAP is an ambitious ten year programme of investment to re-invent Scotland’s largest town centre which will drive economic growth and inward investment in the town and across Renfrewshire as a whole.

To support the objectives of the PTCAP, Councillor Macmillan is urging the Scottish Government to make Paisley a pilot Town Centre Incentivisation Zone and test a number of initiatives designed to stimulate economic growth.

The request included a number of suggestions, such as:

  • Business rates
    • Creation of a ‘town centre regeneration fund’ by allowing local authorities to keep an agreed percentage of current business rates (NDR) within the Incentivisation Zone for a set period, together with any additional NDR payable during this period from new occupants
    • Change regulation to make vacant listed buildings liable for business rates
    • Allow local authorities to retain a proportion of additional business rates from listed buildings within the incentivisation zone so they are liable for rates whether occupied or vacant
    • Offer a VAT exemption for the refurbishment of property within the pilot zone
       
    • Establish a ‘housing regeneration fund’ targeted at vacant buildings in the pilot zone to allow scale to be achieved to entice housing developers to create new housing in town centres

Councillor Macmillan said: “Paisley has the potential to be the driver for economic growth across the whole of Renfrewshire. It is Scotland’s largest town centre, boasting the country’s fourth busiest railway station and one of the highest concentrations of listed buildings.

“The request I have made of the Scottish Government would support our own commitment and ambitious plans for the regeneration of Paisley and Renfrewshire. Each of the proposals we have submitted is designed to support long-term growth and investment through a mix of housing and business investment.

“Also, for a town with such a proud and extensive built heritage as Paisley, these proposals have the potential to play a vital role in protecting our heritage assets which, for too long, have been left neglected.”

Renfrewshire Council is currently conducting a consultation for local people and businesses to have their say on the REF and PTCAP strategies.

The PTCAP will see four areas in the town centre revamped. These are the Gilmour Street Gateway, High Street and UWS Campus, Abbey and River Precinct, and Improving Connections between the town centre and surrounding areas.

The REF sets out a clear strategy for establishing the region as an attractive place to live, work and visit, emphasising that Renfrewshire is open for business. It contains 10 near term strategic priorities which will create more and better jobs through supporting growing businesses, attracting new investment and ensuring the foundations are in place to sustain that growth in the long term.

The consultation period will culminate with two public events at Paisley Town Hall on Thursday November 3 (from 11.30am to 2.30pm) and Wednesday 9 November (from 5.30pm to 7.30pm).

Members of the public are encouraged to attend the events but can also provide feedback by completing the Council’s short survey at:  www.renfrewshire.gov.uk/haveyoursay

The consultation period ends on Thursday 10 November.

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Paisley gets set for Halloween spooktacular

Paisley is gearing up for a spooky entertainment extravaganza at the weekend when the annual Halloween festival once again takes over the town centre.

friday-halloween-115

The hugely popular annual event – run by Renfrewshire Council – is one of only a few of its kind in Scotland and will take place over Friday evening and all-day Saturday.

The first day of fun runs from 6 to 9pm on Friday, starting with a lantern-lit parade down the High Street from the UWS main entrance to Abbey Close, led by the stunning Spark! LED drummers.

friday-halloween-70

Abbey Close itself will be home to a fire garden run by outdoor arts specialists Walk the Plank, featuring fire-breathing sculptures, illuminations and much more.

Paisley Town Hall will be Spook Central, with Halloween arts and crafts, family disco, storytelling, puppet shows and music sessions with Feis Phaislig.

Saturday will see more of the same from 12 until 9pm, but with the addition of a main stage featuring live music from local musicians and dance groups and entertainment from Pulse FM DJs.

friday-halloween-151

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

This will be the third year of the Halloween Festival and kicks off Renfrewshire’s major winter events programme, with the Paisley Fireworks display (Sat 5 Nov) and Christmas Lights Switch-on (Sat 12 Nov) set to follow.

And this year will see a special treat with the world premiere of a new performance by award-winning visual theatre artist Al Seed taking place in Paisley Town Hall’s Loggia room.

Described as a dark gothic melodrama inspired by Edgar Allan Poe’s classic The Raven, tickets for shows on Wednesday and Thursday are on sale now via www.renfrewshireleisure.com

The show is one of the first to be funded by Renfrewshire’s Culture, Heritage and Events fund, which aims to boost cultural capacity in the run-up to Paisley’s bid for UK City of Culture 2021.

Renfrewshire Council Leader Mark Macmillan said: “We are delighted to be welcoming the Paisley Halloween Festival back for another year – it has been a hugely popular family day out with locals and visitors alike since it started in 2014.

“Again, we expect thousands of people to descend on Paisley town centre over the two days, providing an economic boost to the local area and local traders.

“This year’s winter events are extra special as the last ones to take place before the town’s bid for UK City of Culture 2021 goes in next year.

“And with that in mind, we are delighted to welcome critically-acclaimed performer Al Seed to the town for a unique performance made possible by the Paisley 2021 bid.

“But the event is also a great showcase of the talents of the thriving grassroots creative scene we have here in the town.

“That goes from the young people making costumes and starring in the parade, to the many music and dance performers of various ages who will take to the main stage on the Saturday.”

The groups taking part in the weekend include Independent State of Happiness, Right To Dance, Street Stuff, Floor4orce, Solid Rock Cheerleaders and Rock Us Community Choir.

For more information, visit  www.paisley2021.com