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Gleniffer High School pupil Lucy Johnston wins a photography grant

My name is Lucy Johnston and I am putting on an exhibition in Ta Ta Bella’s on the High Street in order to celebrate a photography grant awarded to me by the Woodland Trust.

I’m currently a pupil at Gleniffer High School while doing a college course for photography at WCS Paisley Campus, however I applied for the grant on my own. The project focuses on people and their stories about trees in the community – and how the parks, trees and woodlands around us are important.

Lucy has been in the Express and the majority of her photos have been taken in the Renfrewshire area.

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Young footie stars on the run to raise cash

YOUNGSTERS from a Paisley youth football team are right on the ball when it comes to raising money for club funds.

St Peter’s Boys Club 2006 team who have singed up en masse for the Fun Run after the Paisley 10k Race.

The St Peter’s Boys Club 2006 team is the first large group to sign up for the Fun Run that takes place immediately after the Paisley 10k Race, on Sunday August 20.

There will be 44 boys and adults representing the club taking part.

This is the fourth year the St Peter’s lads have taken part in the Fun Run and club officials are hoping to raise as much as £1000 to help pay for football kit and the cost of running the successful team.

Now other football teams and sports clubs are being encouraged to do the same and join in the fundraising bonanza by being sponsored to complete the Fun Run course around Paisley town centre.

Anyone can now register for the Paisley 10k Race or Fun Run, which is sponsored by sports and outdoor retailer, Decathlon. Last year 3000 people raced around the streets of Paisley in the 10k Race and hundreds more followed in the Fun Run.

Joyce McKellar is chief executive of Renfrew Leisure who are organising the Paisley 10k and Fun Run in conjunction with Renfrewshire Council. She said:

“Taking part in the Fun Run is a great way to raise money for sports clubs and good causes.
“Not only will it bring in much needed cash to help run sports clubs, it’s fun for team members to do something different and everyone enjoys taking part.
“Well done to the boys from St Peter’s for doing the Fun Run for the fourth time and I hope they get lots of sponsorship from family and friends for their efforts.”

You can register for the race by logging on to renfrewshireleisure.com or by telephoning 0300 300 1362 or picking up an entry form from any Renfrewshire Leisure venue.

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Global giant Diageo backs Paisley 2021 bid with special Johnnie Walker bottles

Workers at the world’s biggest Scotch bottling plant raised a glass to Paisley’s bid to be UK City of Culture 2021– with specially-produced bottles of Johnnie Walker whisky.

Jean Cameron and Gavin Brogan with Diageo staff and the Paisley 2021 bottles

Some of the team behind the Paisley 2021 bid – to be lodged with the UK Government this week – visited the Renfrewshire base of drinks giant Diageo, the latest major business to back the town’s ambitions.

Aside from the limited-edition bottles, Diageo are one of a number of major local businesses who have agreed to donate £20,000 to meet the costs of hosting the title.

The company’s packaging plant at Shieldhall bottles more than 25 million cases of Scotch whisky annually – including iconic brands Johnnie Walker, Buchanan’s, J&B and Bell’s.

Paisley 2021 bid director Jean Cameron met some of the staff at the plant – while the 2021 team surprised staff in the canteen with musical performances.

The Paisley 2021 Johnnie Walker bottles are not currently available to the public, but a small limited edition will have been produced at a later date.

Paisley will lodge its bid with the UK Government’s Department for Culture, Media and Sport later this week. The town is bidding for the title as part of wider plans to use its unique cultural and heritage story to transform its future.

Jean Cameron said: “Paisley’s bid to be UK City of Culture 2021 has had incredible backing to date from across the local community – so far, more than 30,000 people have taken part in the conversation around it.

“Along the way we have had wonderful backing from local businesses – with almost 200 to date publicly supporting the bid.

“That includes major local employers of international importance assigning uop as bid sponsors – including Glasgow Airport, WH Malcolm, intu Braehead, Gordon Leslie Group and Coats PLC – and we are thrilled to add Diageo to that list.

“I loved seeing two iconic global Scottish brands – the Paisley Pattern and Johnnie Walker – combined in one beautiful bottle.”

Gavin Brogan, Operations Director at Diageo Shieldhall said “Paisley is famous for its rich history of craftsmanship.

“Today we are part of that living heritage, making the most traditional of Scottish products, Scotch whisky here in Renfrewshire. We’re delighted to support Paisley’s bid to be UK City of Culture in 2021 and we wish the team every success.”

For more on Paisley’s Uk City of Culture 2021 bid, see www.paisley2021.co.uk

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Renfrewshire honours heroic Victoria Cross recipient

A Paisley-born solider who was awarded the Victoria Cross (VC) for ‘most conspicuous bravery’ during World War 1 has been honoured in a special ceremony in Renfrewshire today.

Three standard bearers pictured with Officer Commanding Balaklava Company Maj C M Wood, The Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders, 5th Battalion The Royal Regiment of Scotland, Colonel DG Ross OBE, Chairman of the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders Regimental Association and Renfrewshire’s Provost Anne Hall.

2nd Lieutenant (Acting Captain) Arthur Henderson V.C, M.C was awarded the VC for his efforts in leading his Company though the enemy front line, despite almost immediately being wounded, to their final objective- after which he sadly lost his life.

2nd Lieutenant (Acting Captain) Arthur Henderson V.C, M.C
(Copyright/Ownership: National Army Museum)

A commemorative stone was unveiled in the grounds of Renfrewshire House as part of a national campaign to honour the bravery of VC recipients from WW1 and provide a lasting legacy of local heroes within their communities.

Commemorative paving stone

A short service was led by Renfrewshire’s Provost Anne Hall who joined Officer Commanding Balaklava Company Maj C M Wood, The Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders, 5th Battalion The Royal Regiment of Scotland and Colonel DG Ross OBE, Chairman of the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders Regimental Association in giving a short speech and laying a ceremonial wreath to mark the unveiling.

Provost Hall said: “Arthur Henderson gave the ultimate sacrifice for our country and all of Paisley, and Renfrewshire, should be proud of his roots in the area.

“He battled through the most difficult of adversity to ensure the safety of his fellow soldiers and fully deserves the recognition which has been bestowed upon on him.

“The commemorative stone will allow residents in the area to gain a greater understanding of how Paisley was a part of the First World War and ensure soldiers like Arthur are always remembered.”

Acting Captain Henderson was born in 1893 in Paisley and went to school locally, being educated at John Neilston Institute before moving into employment as an apprentice accountant in Glasgow.

Before the war he was a well-known cricketer and donned his whites for Ferguslie Cricket Club- where his VC medal ribbons and portrait hung in the clubhouse before being moved to Stirling Castle in the late 1980s.

He enlisted with Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders where he attained the rank of 2nd Lieutenant before becoming Acting Captain of the 4th Battalion.

His heroic deed of bravery took place on 23 April 1917 near Fontaine-les-Croisilles in France and he now lies in Cojeul British Cemetery, Saint-Martin-sur-Cojeul- and is remembered at both Paisley Abbey and the War Memorial in Gordon, Berwickshire in the Scottish Borders.

Colonel R L Steele TD DL, Royal Regiment of Scotland, said: “Sadly, we were unable to locate any of Arthur’s blood relatives and thus, it was only fitting that he was surrounded by members of The Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders Regimental Association, who are his present-day regimental family and brothers-in-arms.

“Speaking for The Royal Regiment of Scotland and as a veteran of The Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders, we are all immensely proud of Captain Arthur Henderson VC MC and salute his memory – his cheerful courage and outstanding leadership is a splendid example to all who have served and will serve in the future.”

Acting Captain Henderson’s VC medal now resides at The Lord Ashcroft Gallery: Extraordinary Heroes exhibition, in the Imperial War Museum, London.

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Public exhibitions to shape major infrastructure projects

Engagement events in May will give members of the public a further opportunity to shape two Glasgow City Region City Deal projects spanning Renfrewshire, West Dunbartonshire and Glasgow.

2016 public exhibition event

Four full-day exhibitions in Renfrew, Paisley, Clydebank and Yoker will give people an opportunity to discuss the plans for the Clyde Waterfront and Renfrew Riverside and Glasgow Airport Investment Area projects.

The Clyde Waterfront and Renfrew Riverside project includes a new opening bridge across the River Clyde linking Renfrew with Yoker and Clydebank; construction of the Renfrew North Development Road and new cycle routes.

Proposals as part of the Glasgow Airport Investment Area focus on realignment of Abbotsinch Road, construction of a new bridge over the White Cart and new cycle routes between the Westway, Inchinnan and Airport business parks.

Each project has been shaped following extensive consultation with stakeholders throughout 2016 and 2017.

The exhibitions start at Renfrew Town Hall on Monday 8 May then Paisley Town Hall on Tuesday 9 May. The project team then cross the river to Clydebank Town Hall on Wednesday 10 May finishing at Yoker Community Campus on Thursday 11 May.

All four exhibitions run from 11am to 7pm and include a video representation of the findings from the comprehensive traffic modelling study as well as an animated fly-through model of the potential developments.

A Renfrewshire City Deal spokesman said: “Events throughout 2016 helped shape the projects so far and I would encourage anyone to come along to these final consultation exhibitions taking place in their area. It is a fantastic opportunity to learn more about the projects, speak to the project team and provide input before the plans are finalised.”

Feedback from the exhibitions will be used to inform a full planning application in June, submitted to Renfrewshire Council, West Dunbartonshire Council and Glasgow City Council for the Clyde Waterfront and Renfrew Riverside project. Works related to the Glasgow Airport Investment Area are entirely within Renfrewshire and will be considered by this authority alone.

Full details of each project are available at: www.renfrewshire.gov.uk/citydeal

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CarFest is coming to Paisley town centre this June!

St Vincent’s Hospice are bringing CarFest into Paisley town centre this summer for a motoring extravaganza not to be missed!

There will be classic, vintage and specialist custom cars on show, as well as muscle cars, supercars and emergency vehicles, not to mention motorbikes and even a land train!

As well as treats for motor enthusiasts, there will be plenty of family-friendly fun with fairground rides, children’s entertainment, stalls, tombola and a prize raffle.

Caledonian Pipe Band of Edinburgh

Organised by MaxSafe Solutions and sponsored by Paisley First, the event will take place in Paisley town centre on Saturday 17th June and offers free entertainment for all the family.

This is the fourth year of St. Vincent’s Hospice CarFest but its first visit to the town centre with all funds raised on the day supporting the hospice in Howwood.

There were cars and bikes, and the St Vincent’s Hospice mascot “Vinnie” as all proceeds from the event itself on 17th June will be going to the hospice.
Pictured is Innes 2 and Joe 4 Jagger from Bishopton

Paisley First Vice Chairman, David Wallace, said: “We’re thrilled to be supporting the Hospice and the CarFest team in bringing this great event to Paisley town centre.”

“It will be a great day out for all the family and I am sure all the local businesses will join in the fun too, all in aid of such a worthy cause.”

Kate Lennon, Chief Executive of St. Vincent’s Hospice, said: “We are very excited to hold this event in Paisley for the first time.”

“We look forward to meeting old friends and new at this fabulous event. Everyone at the hospice is truly grateful for all the support from our local communities.”

Willie Chrystal of MaxSafe Solutions said: ““Having set up the initial CarFest a few years ago, after speaking with the fundraising team at the hospice during one of our training courses, I came up with the idea of hosting a show at the hospice.”

“It has been fantastically received by both the car owners and the public alike with vehicles of all shapes, sizes and years. Everyone has loved it.”

“The work that the hospice provides for the people of Renfrewshire is exceptional. What better way for a petrol head to have fun and also help raise some money.”

The event on Saturday 17th June will kick off with a procession of more than 100 cars taking part from Renfrew Road into the town centre at 8.30am.

The cars will then be on show at locations including County Square, The Cenotaph, High Street and Johnston Street from 10 am until 4 pm.

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PAISLEY PIRATES 5 DUNDEE COMETS 9

paisley pirates

Pirates finished their season on a disappointing note as they relinquished the Scottish Cup to Dundee Comets, a hat trick from David Orr not being enough to prevent the league champions from going down to the Tayside outfit.

The Paisley side were hit by an opening blitz which saw the Comets hit two goals in twenty seconds in the fourth minute through Inglis and Hamilton and Gold, and while Orr’s goal did pull the score back to 2-1 after six minutes, Comets had their two goal cushion back in just over 60 seconds as Gold beat Meechan for a third time with under eight minutes on the clock, at which juncture Hepburn took over in the Paisley goal. However, he, too, was beaten in the 14th minute by a shot from Smith and the Comets went into the first break holding an already comfortable lead at 4-1.

Pirates needed an early goal in the second period to claw themselves back into the game, but it came at the wrong end as Dolan netted within a minute to give the Comets a four goal cushion with almost two full periods remaining. The champions did produce some fighting spirit and pulled back two goals from Orr, the third thus completing his hat trick, by the 37th minute to give a hint of daylight at 5-3, but Gordon shut the door again a minute later to take the score to 6-3 at the second break.

With Paisley looking down the barrel of a shotgun they pulled themselves back within two goals again after 45 minutes when Campbell beat Michie for 6-4, but once more the Comets slammed the door shut with a further two goals from Dolan and Whitelaw to end any lingering hopes of a last gasp fightback, and while Miller netted for 8-5 with just under two minutes to go, Comets had the final word with Gold scoring within thirty seconds to finish the scoring, sending Pirates home empty handed for the second time in a fortnight.

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Paisley 2021 bid marked with mass Baker Street sax performance in Gerry Rafferty home town

Paisley marked the town’s bid to be UK City of Culture 2021 in spectacular style today – with a mass outdoor rendition of Gerry Rafferty’s classic Baker Street.

Around 25 saxophonists were joined a by a live band and a crowd of hundreds on the town’s High Street for a special performance of the Paisley-born singer’s iconic worldwide hit, in the week of what would have been his 70th birthday.

The Baker Street performance was the brainchild of Tommy McGrory of local music charity Loud and Proud, and delivered in partnership with the Paisley 2021 bid team and backed by youth theatre group PACE.

The event was part of an action-packed weekend for the town – with Abbey Close hosting the third annual Paisley Food Festival, with thousands of visitors enjoying street food from some of the country’s finest traders.

The event also featured cooking demos from BBC Masterchef – The Professionals winner Gary Maclean, free workshops for kids, and live entertainment from acts including The Voice finalists Into the Ark and CBeebies star Katy Ashworth.

And Paisley Town Hall was hosting the final day of the 30th annual Paisley Beer Festival – the largest real-ale festival in Scotland.

Paisley’s bid to be UK City of Culture will be lodged with the UK Government’s Department of Culture, Media and Sport this week, ahead of Friday’s deadline.

Paisley 2021 bid director Jean Cameron said: “Paisley’s bid to be UK City of Culture 2021 has been a mass movement, with incredible buy-in from the local community.

“That was evident again today, with a wonderful turnout and a great atmosphere at both the Baker Street performance, and the food and beer festivals.

“One of the key things our bid will celebrate is the incredible wealth of talent produced by this town, and Gerry Rafferty is one of the best examples of that – so this was a fantastic way to mark the bid submission later this week.”

Gerry’s daughter Martha added: “My father was very proud of his Paisley roots and I am sure he would have been supportive of the town’s UK City of Culture bid.”

The UK Government is expected to announce a shortlist of bidding places over the summer, and the winner by the end of the year.

For more information, visit paisley2021.co.uk

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Paisley to honour Baker Street singer with mass sax solo

Paisley will honour one of its most famous sons with a mass outdoor rendition of the iconic saxophone solo from Gerry Rafferty’s Baker Street this weekend.

The musical moment has been organised by local promoter Tommy McGrory of Loud ‘n’ Proud as a tribute to the late singer in the week of what would have been his 70th birthday.

It also helps mark the send-off of Paisley’s bid to be UK City of Culture 2021 – due to be lodged with the UK Government next week – with the event part-funded by the 2021 bid team.

The sax solo will take place at Paisley Cross at 1pm on Saturday and will see professional musicians – including a live band – joined by local talent.

And Gerry’s daughter Martha said: “My father was very proud of his Paisley roots and I am sure he would have been supportive of the town’s UK City of Culture bid.

“To have so many people playing the Baker Street solo together in the town centre is a unique idea and I am sure it will make a great spectacle. Let’s hope they’re all in tune! I am looking forward to hearing it.”

Paisley 2021 bid director Jean Cameron said: “This event is a tribute to one of Paisley’s best musical exports and a song known the world over.

“As well as marking what would have been Gerry’s birthday it’s also a great way to shine a spotlight on the town as we prepare to submit the bid, which will feature Paisley’s incredible musical legacy.”

Tommy McGrory added: “We’ve had phenomenal interest in this ever since we revealed the plans a few days ago – it is shaping up to be a must-see moment.

“We have in excess of 30 people lined up to take part but if any other saxophone players are interested in joining us, they can contact me through Loud ‘n’ Proud on 0141 840 1090.”

The coming weekend will be a busy one for Paisley, with Saturday seeing the town host the third annual Paisley Food Festival in Abbey Close, with street-food traders from across the country, free live entertainment and cookery demos.

This weekend will also see Renfrewshire CAMRA’s 30th annual Paisley Beer Festival in Paisley Town Hall, while local business improvement district Paisley First are running Paisley Restaurant Week, with discount deals available at local eateries.

For more information on these events and the bid itself, visit paisley2021.co.uk

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Pipe bands from across the world set to battle it out to be named Britain’s best

Paisley is set to welcome competitors from as far as Canada and Denmark as the top pipe bands in the world aim to be crowned British champions.

photos courtesy of Mark F Gibson / Gibson Digital
07792445 437
infogibsondigital@gmail.co.uk
www.gibsondigital.co.uk
All images © Gibson Digital 2016.

On Saturday 20 May, over 4,000 pipers and drummers will descend on the St James Playing Fields for the second year in succession following a fantastic competition last year which saw Inverary and District take home the Grade 1 prize.

They’ll face stiff competition from all over the world this year however as bands from Canada, Ireland and Northern Ireland join Scotland’s finest in trying to take home the accolade of Britain’s best.

From 10am, 145 bands will take to the competition arena and look to impress the judges from the Royal Scottish Pipe Band Association (RSPBA) in 11 different categories.

After the final band performs- at around 5:30pm- the prize giving will take place before all bands join the final march-past which will close the competition.

The free-to-attend event will also feature a delicious food village, a children’s entertainment zone, the Slug in a Bottle craft market and much more.

RSPBA Chief Executive, Ian Embelton, said: “After the success of last year’s Championships we are all looking forward to an even more exciting event this year.

“Bands have entered in great numbers and everything is in place for a great day out for all the family’

The Championships form part of a series of events taking place across Renfrewshire which are helping to support Paisley’s bid for UK City of Culture 2021.

Paisley 2021 Bid Director, Jean Cameron, said: “It is fantastic to see the Championships return to Paisley after such a successful event last year.

“I would encourage everyone to take the opportunity to see some of the world’s foremost pipers competing in one of the biggest dates in world piping and enjoy the marvellous entertainment being provided on the day.

“The sight of thousands of pipers and supporters descending on the town is not only a boost for local traders, but also enhances our bid to be named UK City of Culture as we again showcase our ability to hold large-scale events in the area.

“The winning bidder would host a number of prestigious events in 2021 and we’re determined to give Paisley the best chance of a successful bid as we look to bring lasting social and economic change to the area.”

Designated event parking will be at West College Scotland, Paisley Grammar School and Castlehead High School.

Visitors should be aware there will be no on-site parking at the St James Playing Fields for the public – this will be for pipe band coaches and event officials only.

Free shuttle buses will run directly to the event site throughout the day from West College Scotland and Paisley Gilmour Street station. Full details are at www.renfrewshire.gov.uk/events.

The full running order for the day, showing all bands, grades and timings, is now available at www.rspba.org