Whitehaugh, Paisley News

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Council Leader sets out budget challenges

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Renfrewshire Council Leader Iain Nicolson has pledged to put local communities at the heart of the Council’s budget plans for the coming financial year.

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The Council Leader pledged to ‘put people first’ and ensure that spending is targeted where it will make a difference for communities and businesses across Renfrewshire.

The level of council tax and the council’s total spending on services and capital investment will be set at a meeting of Renfrewshire Council on 1 March.

Councillor Nicolson said:  “I was delighted to be appointed Leader of the Council after the election last year and we have worked hard with councillors from across the parties to make sure we’re delivering the best deal we can for the people who live and work in Renfrewshire.

“It’s been a fantastic time for Renfrewshire and our recent bid for UK City of Culture. Being part of the competition was supported by all political parties and it gave us this fantastic platform to show everyone what we can do. It’s important now we continue that journey, building on the positive perceptions created and making sure that we make the most of the opportunities we have in front of us.

“We want to make Renfrewshire an attractive place to live, work and visit. We will continue to invest in education, jobs and tackling the inequalities that can hold people back from realising their full potential.

“I promised at the time that we would listen to what communities tell us and we have worked to ensure that with finite resources, we make sure we get the best value for every public pound we spend.

“We want to give people back a pride in their place and we’ve invested in improving our local environment through our team up to clean up programme.”

Councillor Nicolson also highlighted that with limited resources, there would have to be new ways of working together to deliver key public services.

“Like other local authorities, we must work within the budgets we are set and we will continue to work with our local communities and partners to ensure that our investment decisions are based on what will make an impact and ensure our communities continue to thrive.”

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Budget Brings Funding Boost For Paisley.

More Cash For Local Services Thanks To Progressive Reforms

Renfrewshire Council is set to receive a significant funding boost as a result of this year’s SNP Scottish Government budget – with local services in Renfrewshire benefiting from an extra £8.823 million.

The SNP’s progressive reforms – which will see 55% of taxpayers pay less in income tax than if they lived in the rest of the UK – guarantee a 2.83% increase rise in Renfrewshire council’s resource budget, providing extra funding for schools, roads and housing. The budget will also see Renfrewshire schools benefit from £4,272,240 million as part of the Pupil Equity Fund, helping to tackle the attainment gap.

The Scottish Budget also provides additional spending on our NHS – which will see an extra £400 million in funding to help protect our health service from Tory austerity.

Commenting, Paisleys MSP, George Adam said:

“This extra funding for Renfrewshire council – an additional £8.823 million for the coming year – is a great settlement for our communities.

“The SNP’s progressive reforms on income tax, seeing 70% of people pay less than they did last year, and 55% pay less than they would if they lived south of the border, are vital for allowing this funding increase despite continued austerity being imposed by the Tories at Westminster.

“And it takes the total resource budget for our council’s services – such as schools, roads and housing – to £311.453 million for the coming year, an increase of 2.83% when compared with last year.

“This progressive budget also provides extra funding for our NHS, education and broadband, and more money for our economy, research and our environment too – as well as protecting free university tuition, free personal care for the elderly, free school meals and free prescriptions.

“While the Tories propose cutting over £556 million from public services in order to pay for their tax cuts for the wealthiest – the SNP Government delivers for our councils and protects the vital local services in Paisley that we all hold dear.”

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First buildings benefit from latest round of town centre heritage funding

Improvements to Paisley’s built environment are continuing as work starts on the first buildings benefiting from the latest raft of heritage funding.

Repairs to 9 Gilmour Street are being carried out through the £4 million Paisley Townscape and Conservation Area Regeneration Scheme (TH.CARS2) which is funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund, Historic Environment Scotland and Renfrewshire Council and will be delivered over the next four years.

The multi-million pound regeneration programme aims to make the area around the High Street a more attractive place to visit and invest.

Through the scheme, building owners can apply for grant funding for building repairs and shopfront improvements with a view to creating a high quality environment which will increase business interest and reduce the number of vacant properties in the area.

The grant funding secured for 9 Gilmour Street will deliver repairs to the external fabric of the building with work being carried out by local construction firm Clark Contracts.

Mr Allan Toti of A.D.T Properties who owns the ground floor shop units at 9 Gilmour Street, said:  “There is such beautiful architecture in the town and by making funding available for improvements to the properties it gives people the opportunity to admire them more.

“The grant funding is a great thing and I would encourage other shop owners to take advantage of it as it offers business benefits to them as well as improving the look of the buildings in the town.

“I love the town, I think it’s a great place and improvements to the town centre will only help to make it an even better place.”

The building is also the head office of Walker Laird and is occupied by 55 solicitors and support staff.

Ronnie McGinlay, Partner at Walker Laird said: “Our firm is keen to stay in the centre of Paisley and due to the cost of the major refurbishment works sought advice on grant funding from Renfrewshire Council.

“The decision to award the grant has allowed Walker Laird to maintain its presence in the town and the firm is very grateful for the assistance and advice offered throughout this process.”

Leader of Renfrewshire Council, Cllr Iain Nicolson, said: “Paisley boasts an impressive built heritage which we want to protect and revitalise. By investing in our built environment we will encourage more visitors and businesses to the area which will in turn increase footfall on the High Street and reduce the number of vacant properties.

“Through the scheme we, along with the support of HLF and HES, want to help building owners repair and improve their premises to help increase business interest. It’s great to see building and business owners in the community take advantage of the scheme and  I would encourage more people to find out about the grant funding offered through this project and what the potential business benefits are likely to be.”

The scheme builds on the success of the initial £3.5m THI/CARS scheme which transformed the area around Causeyside Street including shopfront repair grants and public realm improvements.

A number of other projects have been implemented aimed at driving people back into the town centre including the restoration and reuse of the Russell Institute, the proposed relocation of Paisley Central Library to a vacant building on the High Street and plans for a £42 million revamp to Paisley Museum.

To find out more about the Paisley Townscape Heritage and Conservation Area Regeneration Scheme please visit: www.renfrewshire.gov.uk/thcars2.

For more information on the Council’s wider regeneration plans please visit: www.renfrewshire.gov.uk/paisley.

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Memories of Auld Paisley Wed 28th Feb Paisley Museum 7-8.30

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New Artist in Residence has plenty food for thought!

The new Artist in Residence at Paisley Arts Centre, Clare McGarry reckons she’s found the recipe for success in her new role.


She’s going to talk to people about food!
And later this year, during the Spree Festival, Clare – who has been appointed by Renfrewshire Leisure – will produce a show inspired by her research talking to people of all ages about food in the local culture.

This will include the many Italian chippys and cafes in Renfrewshire; some of the area’s famous food manufacturers like Robertson’s jams and Brown and Polson; the differences in what people eat today compared to years gone by and the need for foodbanks in recent times. Clare is also the artistic director of Grinagog Theatre Company and she explains: “Many of my previous shows have been about food as I’ve discovered food is a wonderful mechanism for people to begin to talk about their wider life experiences and social histories.

“One of the main focuses of the project is community engagement. I want to work with a diverse range of groups across Renfrewshire to find out about their rituals when they are making and eating food; what they like to eat when they have something to celebrate and what recipes and tradition have been passed from generation to generation.” Clare plans to interview people of all ages from school pupils, community and family groups, people who meet up to discuss their area’s heritage to ethnic minority groups, food-growing initiatives and foodbanks.

A key partner in this project is Imaginate, an organisation that promotes, develops and celebrates theatre and dance for young people in Scotland. There are also plans for workshops and masterclasses in the performing arts. All Clare’s research work will culminate in the final show performed by professional actors, at Paisley Arts Centre and there are also plans to take the show to Renfrew Town Hall, Johnstone Town Hall and the Tweedie Hall, in Linwood.

Clare adds: “I am excited about letting the process of this year guide and shape the content of the final piece. “The performance will be a celebration of the stories we hear and I’d like to explore a multi-sensory approach during the show to include real baking, or cooking on stage, creating real smells and the audience being able to taste the food.” Joyce McKellar, chief executive of Renfrewshire Leisure, which runs arts and culture services said: “This sounds like a really exciting and innovative project that will delve into the social history and culture of the local area.

“I’m sure lots of people will want to share their experiences with food and the part it plays in their lives, whether it has been making food products, cooking or enjoying eating it.” Renfrewshire Leisure was supported by the National Lottery through Creative Scotland’s Open Project Fund. This enables Paisley Arts Centre to develop and deliver an Artist in Residence programme that supports an established artist to develop new work for children over five and their families, providing opportunities for local children and young people to participate in the arts.

Karen Dick, Place, Partnerships and Communities Officer at Creative Scotland said: “Paisley Arts Centre’s Artist in Residence Programme provides an excellent opportunity to build on the increased engagement in the arts in Paisley following its City of Culture 2021 bid, which highlighted the ambition and wealth of local talent in the arts and creative industries.

“This residency will support community empowerment through creative practice and result in the creation of new works that will leave a lasting legacy on Paisley Arts Centre and the communities which it serves.”

Anyone interested in becoming involved in the project should contact Clare on clarelemcgarry@hotmail.com or call 07816 618 316.

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Paisley Pirates Wekend Preview

Paisley Pirates’ Head Coach Ian Turley declared “business as usual” following his team’s 11-1 win over Moray Typhoons, the two points from which resulted in his side leap frogging Aberdeen Lynx and move up to third place in the Scottish National League

“We scored another win, and that helps build up momentum, but at this time it’s critical that we keep our sensible hats on and continue doing what we’re doing,” he said. “I know some people are looking at the league table and saying “well, if they do this, and we do that, then this could happen,” but I can honestly say that is not the focus of attention for Adam Walker and myself, nor has it been, since the season commenced in September.”

 

“We said away back then that this year would be about performances, and that’s exactly how it’s been in training and games. With good performances you will normally get the rewards you deserve, play badly and you don’t. Conversely, we got away with two below par performances a few weeks ago against this Sunday’s opponents, North Ayrshire Wild, and that’s not to take away from the good display they put on, we just didn’t play to our standards.”

 

He continued, “Wild will be looking at their own performance in the second leg of that tie and thinking “we could cause an upset here” if the same conditions prevail, so it’s up to us to go out and prove we can play very well and put on a show for our supporters. We had a group in from a local Paisley cubs section in Paisley for the Moray game and they certainly made a lot of noise, and we’re still taking group bookings via paisleypirates@gmail.com if local leaders want to give their youth groups a good night out for not a lot of money. We’ve got quite a few games still to play at home this year so there’s still time if you want to get in touch with us and come along to support their local team, and see some of the very best local talent available on Sunday nights.”

 

Sunday’s match faces off at the usual time of 6.00pm

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Plans to build on Paisley 2021 legacy to go before councillors

Plans to use the momentum of Paisley’s UK City of Culture 2021 bid to help drive a long-term cultural, social and economic transformation of the area are to go before councillors next week.

Renfrewshire Council and its partners have been planning how the town’s bid journey will continue, by building on the positive platform the bid created, and the widespread community support that drove Paisley’s campaign.

Paisley was the only Scottish place and first-ever town to make the shortlist for the prestigious competition, run by the UK Government’s Department for Culture, Media and Sport.

Feedback from DCMS says Paisley was viewed as ‘a very strong contender’ and the decision to shortlist the bid was ‘an easy one’, while praising the town’s passion and commitment to using culture to tackle social problems, and describing the Paisley bid’s community engagement as ‘exemplary’.

The Paisley 2021 Partnership Board – set up to oversee the bid and bringing together business, cultural, educational, community, health and political representatives – has already confirmed it will continue and will deliver and drive a legacy plan, with some partners intending to maintain their original financial pledges.

That detailed legacy plan will be finalised by the Partnership Board in March – but a report outlining the key points of the local authority’s contribution towards the plan is now going before the council’s Leadership Board

It will continue the ambition to achieve the bid’s original long-term aims to significantly grow Paisley’s creative economy, transform its reputation, see the town recognised for its cultural excellence, lift communities out of poverty, and turn Paisley town centre into a vibrant destination.

And the council will continue to lead on delivering the following:

– the planned £100m-plus investment in venues and infrastructure, including the project under way to turn Paisley Museum into an international-class visitor destination, major internal revamps to transform Paisley Town Hall and Arts Centre, upgrading the sporting facilities at St James Playing Fields and creating new space for outdoor events and festivals, a new library on the High Street, and improvements to the town centre streetscape and road system;

– a new Paisley destination brand and website will also be unveiled in the next few weeks to build on the national and international profile created by the bid and promote the area as an attractive place to visit, live and invest;

– an enhanced cultural events and festivals programme over the next four years to deliver the best of what was planned for 2021, attract visitors to Paisley, and strengthen the local cultural sector;

Plans will also be developed to grow the area’s creative economy through a new apprenticeship programme, support for creative businesses and a new volunteer strategy.

Renfrewshire Council leader Iain Nicolson said: “We must do everything to build on the impact of bidding for UK City of Culture and the momentum it created.

“The campaign took the town’s profile to new levels – with hundreds of millions of people around the world getting the chance to see or hear something positive about Paisley – transformed our reputation, raised awareness of our unique story, and brought self-confidence back to the town.

“It also generated a town-wide discussion about Paisley’s future – with more than 36,000 people engaging with the bid by the time the final submission was made, and new partnerships and relationships developed locally and nationally which will continue to work in Paisley’s interest.

“And it also firmly established the idea that Paisley’s unique cultural and heritage assets can be used to transform its future – and not just in an economic sense, but also through social impact, by harnessing the power of culture to boost health and well-being, and help people out of poverty.

“We may not have won the title – but the important point is we are still going to deliver our vision and many of the aspirations that informed our bid.

“The report going to the leadership board offers an initial outline of those next steps, and as chair of the Paisley Partnership Board I look forward to revealing the detailed action plan with our partners.

“With major investment in our cultural venues, a new destination brand and website set to launch, an enhanced events and festivals programme in the years ahead, and new funding to support local artists and help the local cultural sector grow, there is lots ahead to be excited by.”

The council’s leadership board will meet on Wednesday 21 February.

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SHINE THE LIGHT MR FEBRUARY

In partnership with Pinnacle Training, February’s Shine The Light is Bill Elliot.

Bill Elliot, 64, of Houston was nominated by friend and fellow supporters club chairwoman Marie Cadenhead, for his outstanding voluntary contribution to Paisley Pirates. Bill was presented with his award in front of an audience of Paisley Pirates fans, club members, and players, as well as his his wife and son.

Paisley Pirates Ice Hockey club is a non-profit sporting organisation run by the Turley family on a voluntary basis.
Bill is credited with spending his own time producing match reports and promotional material for the club, often working late into the night, as well as having an active role in the Supporters Club as former Chairman and Secretary.

Bill has been volunteering for several years, from the Pirate’s home in the Lagoon Leisure Centre to their new home in Braehead Arena.

The Paisley Pirates were founded in 1946 and are one of the oldest hockey clubs in Scotland and the UK. As well as receiving prestigious awards such as Volunteer of the Year 2015 Renfrewshire Community Sports Awards, Team of the Year 2016 Renfrewshire Community Sports Awards, as well as recently receiving the Provost’s Community Award – Sporting Achievement. They are an asset to Paisley and Renfrewshire, something Bill is keen to see continue, as evident with his volunteering, fund raising and promotional work.

Marie, Paisley Pirates Supporters Club Chairwoman, credits Bill, “Bill does a lot of behind the scenes work. On a personal level, he has been a huge support to me, especially when I was asked to start Paisley Pirates Supporters Club”.

Bill’s interest in the sporting community extends beyond just Ice Hockey, as he was highly involved with the Paisley Lions. Paisley Lions were a motorcycle speedway team that participated in the British National League in 1975 and 1976, based at Love Street in Paisley.

Despite having to take a step back in recent years due to family commitments and personal illness, Bill is still a driving force in maintaining and promoting the club.
Jackie Turley, Paisley Pirates Club Secretary said “Bill is a stalwart of the club and at times has been a vital part of the Pirates’ operation. He has went above and beyond to ensure the club is successful both on and off the ice and there’s no task he won’t undertake. Bill constantly keeps us in the public eye.”

It is because of people like Bill that organisations like the Paisley Pirates flourish, creating opportunity, growth and positive attention to Renfrewshire. It is those inspirational people in our community such as Bill Elliot that we should recognise and we are only too pleased to award Bill the title of Shine The Light – Mr February, as presented by Jim Furie, Managing Director.

Anyone wishing to support the Paisley Pirates can do so by contacting paisleypirates@gmail.com

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Mix Equality Events at Paisley Arts Centre

Mix – A New Series of Equalities Work at Paisley Arts Centre

A series of performances has been programmed at Paisley Arts centre as part of Mix – a new season of equalities work, presented by Outspoken Arts Scotland for LGBT History Month.

At A Stretch, is a wordless visual theatre production from Jordan and Skinner aimed at children and families with comedy, exciting choreography and breathtaking physical theatre. This show will be performed on Sat 17 February and follows two women as they become increasingly tied together and learn to negotiate the tricky world of close relationships.

Jumpers for Goalposts is a heart-warming tale about the Leith Gay and Lesbian five a side tournament where fitness, friendships and fabulous Moroccan cuisine are put to the test.

And finally Paisley Arts Centre welcomes back Paisley’s own Carol Laula, who will be performing alongside local musicians Lisa Kowalski, Marie Collins and Linzi Clark with an evening of music and spoken words to mark International Women’s Day.

Morag Macpherson, Head of Cultural Services at Renfrewshire Leisure states ‘We are delighted to be part of LGBT History Month once again and to work in partnership with Outspoken Arts with these three very different, but equally entertaining performances.’

Steven Thomson, of Outspoken Arts states ‘The Mix event is a new boutique season of work spanning LGBT History month and International Women’s Day. We are really excited that this has given us the opportunity to bring these inclusive cultural events to Paisley.’

Notes

At A Stretch is on Sat 17 Feb at 2pm. Tickets are £5 (£4 conc) + bkg fee

Jumpers for Goalposts is on Wed 28 Feb at 7.30pm. Tickets are £8 (£5 conc) + bkg fee

Wicked Women: Carol Laula and Friends is on Thursday 8 March at 7.30pm. Tickets are £10 (£8 conc) + bkg fee

All tickets can be purchased online at www.renfrewshireleisure.com or by phone 0300 300 1210.

Please note that £1 transaction fee is applicable on all tickets booked online.

For more information, or to arrange an interview please contact Carolyn Thom on 0141 618 5109 or carolyn.thom@renfrewshire.gov.uk

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FREE ReMode Inspire Visit

Hi everyone,

Check out the details of our upcoming inspire visit we have coming up:

Inspire Visit to – Woodlands Community Garden and Creative Space
On – Saturday February 24th – 11am – 3.30pm

This is a free trip and will include sessions to be led by artist, gardener and natural dyes specialist Kathy Beckett. We are hoping to stir up some ideas about how we can use own local community gardens and creative spaces, and cordially invite all residents of the communities of Lochwinnoch and outlying villages and areas to come along! All ages and family groups are welcome. Spaces limited so please get in touch and book A.S.A.P.

11am – Bus pick-up at Lochwinnoch, McKillop Institutue, Main Street Lochwinnoch.

11.30am – Introduction to the Woodlands Community Garden and Creative Space.

12noon – Planting of Madder roots – to grow the plant that was traditionally used to make the colour red.

12.45pm – LUNCH (provided)

1.15pm – Natural Dyes Workshop led by Kathy Beckett.

3.30pm – Depart for home.

Contact – Gillian Steel – gillian@myleapproject.org – 07854468512