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Glen Cinema Memorial


As the last day of the old year draws near, it’s time for us to gather at the Cenotaph at 10.30am, near Paisley Cross to honour and remember those that lost their lives in the Glen Cinema Disaster on Hogmanay in 1929.

During the cowboy film ‘The Dude Desperado’ a canister of nitrate film made contact with the live terminal of a battery and began to smoulder, the resulting smoke gave the wrong impression that the cinema was on fire, panic ensued and 71 young children died and 40 were injured in the crush that followed.

On Saturday the 31st December the few remaining survivors of the tragedy along with the Paisley Development Trust, Bishop Tartaglia, Reverend Birss and representatives from the council and the community of Paisley will gather to pay our respects to those that lost their lives that fateful day.

Please join us.

Paisley Development Trust.

find out more

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Video Glen Cinema Memorial


Video from the Glen Cinema Memorial on the 31st December 2009 at Paisley Cenotaph, organised by the Paisley Development Trust, for more information on the Glen Cinema please check out the website

video taken by Brian McGuire, check out our gallery for images.

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Glen Cinema Wreath Laying ceremony


Emily brown with the wreath

This morning was a time to reflect on the 71 young lifes lost in 1929 when there was a tragic loss of life at the Glen Cinema in Paisley. Today is the 80th anniversary of this tragic event.

The Paisley Development Trust and Renfrewshire council both laid wreaths at Paisley Cenotaph this morning to commemorate the event, I will upload a video soon of the ceremony and add some images as well.

Welcome and intro:- Father John Tormey

Opening prayer (remembering 80 years ago, the kids who lost their lives in the Glen) Bishop Tartallia

Reading:- Rev Briss

Poem  :- Father Tormey

Moment of Silence (laying of wreath) Martyn R,  assisting first Emily Brown laying wreath on the trusts behalf and then Derek Mackay (leader of council).

Prayers of intercession :- Father Tormey

Our Father:-All

Blessing:- Bishop Tartallia

for more information on the cinema go to where you can also buy a DVD commemorating the event too.

Glen Cinema Disaster


glen cinema

Due to donations from some of our volunteers and with much kindness we thought we would help out an other organisation and setup hosting and purchase a domain name for them and build it into a website.

In its heyday Paisley was full of cinemas and entertainment venues.

People look back with fond memories at The Astortia, The Picturehouse, The New Alex, La Scala, The Alex, The Regal, The Kelbourne and The Glen.

Today they’re all gone. Demolished, converted into retail units or Bingo Halls. If a Paisley buddy wants to catch a movie these days they have to travel to Linwood to a retail park. The whole of Britain was horror-struck on Hogmanay 1929 to learn of the dreadful cinema catastrophe in Paisley that afternoon, in which 70 children lost their lives and over 40 were injured.

About 1000 boys and girls, mostly from working-class homes, were witnessing a matinee performance at The Glen Cinema, when dense clouds of smoke, caused by a film which had started to smoulder in the spool-room, were swept into the cinema. The cry of “Fire” was raised, and the children stampeded in a panic to the back entrance. This was closed, and in the frantic struggle which ensued many children were trampled and others were suffocated by the fumes. In 2003 a project was created to commemorate the terrible tragedy of the Glen

Cinema. 2004 is the 75th Anniversary of the disaster and a new exhibition telling an accurate story of events that day. The exhibition pays tribute to the survivors, many of whom are still here today to tell the tale. The Paisley Development Association, in partnership with Fablevision and Renfrewshire CVS secured funding and a community led cultural project was created. The project was split into four sections: A mini excavation of the Glen Cinema Building Coordination of a new Artist in Residence Programme A survivor’s archive project The creation of a new exciting exhibition

Due to our efforts as a group we were able to help an organisation get going from nothing and join the ranks of other Paisley websites which aim to promote the town and also help people learn the lesson of this tragic disaster killing so many young life’s  and changing others for ever.

Any donation that goes into the website and if we see an organisation that can be helped then we would be more than happy to help out.

Feel free to visit the new website (formerly

Paisley Abbey manhole dig 2009


Today, we can confirm that as part of Doors Open Day and Scottish Archaeology Month, archaeologists from the University of Glasgow “GUARD Glasgow University Archelogical Research Division” are conducting an investigation around the modern manhole which is the present access to the Drain, i was luckily enough to be told in june about the planned dig which started this morning on schedule.

Paisley Abbey’s drain is almost unique in Britain, being in parts somel.5 to 2 metres in height, beautifully built of dressed ashlar blocks. The drain was rediscovered in 1990 when archaeologists from the GUARD (Glasgow University Archaeological Research Division) were directed to the modern manhole by Frank Snow, of the then Strathclyde Sewage Department. The drain was excavated of 2 feet (60 cm) of silt which contained some amazing finds.

Fragments of pottery from several hundred vessels were recovered, along with a complete chamber pot (on display in Paisley Abbey sacristy). Work has been carried out this summer by Sabrina Gillman a post graduate student at Glasgow Uni, to catalogue and study this pottery. She has been assisted by many volunteers from Renfrewshire Local History Forum and Glasgow Archaeology Society.

Other finds included inscribed slates, buckles, lead seals, gaming pieces, and remains of more than one hundred and forty plants. Amongst these are food plants such as barley, wheat, onions, kale, imports such as mace and figs, and medicinal plants such as opium poppies, greater celandine and hemlock.

The excavation’s purpose is two-fold. First to provide information about the construction of the drain, and, it is hoped, help date the structure and reveal any earlier form of drain on the site.
Second, to establish whether there is any valuable archaeology here which might preclude use of the area for any future permanent viewing facility.
The archaeologists will be on site during Doors Open Day to explain their findings, and there will be an exhibition in Paisley Abbey providing more information about the drain.

paisley is very grateful to the University of Glasgow’s Archaeology Department, particularly Professor Steven Driscoll, Robert Will and Sabrina Gillman for their expertise and enthusiasm; the University of the West of Scotland, particularly Tony Grace of the School of Media, Language and Music for recording the dig and helping make it more widely known; Renfrewshire Local History Forum, particularly Andrew Eadie and Bruce Hendry for their unfailing support and enthusiasm; Frank Snow – the man who knew where the Drain was when the archaeologists couldn’t find it and who has kept his sense of excitement and ownership for nearly twenty years; and On Site Ltd, Acre Industrial and Scot Jet Ltd for their generous sponsorship of the dig.

information sent in by “historicalpaisley”

Paisley on the web is up for a Provost Community award


Great news the Paisley on the web website, myself and the volunteers have made it to the finals of the Renfrewshire Provost Community awards 2009. This is early news and we don’t have written confirmation as yet but the awards are held every year and this years ceremony is to be held in the Normandy Hotel in Renfrew and we are in the Community volunteer or group category which is sponsored by Ciba Specialty Chemicals PLC.

The Paisley website has one aim and that is to promote the town of Paisley via the Internet, it has been going now for ten years “wow ten years already” and I am sure it will be here for another ten with the great help of everyone that dedicates their time and effort to promoting the website and town, and to all our regular visitors to the website.

I am not sure if we can say who nominated us or give any final details as yet, but I wish to say thank you to that person or person’s who have nominated us, it is very appreciated and win or lose it really is the taking part that counts.

Here is the link to the Provost awards Renfrewshire on the Renfrewshire Council website.

Renfrewshire Council agree before you agree


Just noticed the big spin on the Scottish News about Renfrewshire Council agreeing to spend 11m on housing improvements this year and more over the next five years, funny that because at the end it says they are still waiting on the council tenants coming back to them with their ideas and views, so the council once again makes its own mind up without asking what you think.

Don’t get me wrong improvements to the council housing stock is way overdue, have a look up next time your walking by some council housing stock and you will notice a lot of slates still off from last years storms, or if you see a patchwork like quilt effect on someones roof you know that the council just put any old tile no matter if it wasn’t in keeping with the property on the roof.

this is the link for the councils website asking your views and also seeing if you are prepared to pay more for your rent for modernisation. I want to ask though where has all our rent money from the last 10 years or so gone? It certainly hasn’t went back to modernising housing stock.

Pace youth theatre, Renfrewshire


PACE Theatre Company was formed in 1988 and is a registered charity and non-profit making company based in Paisley, Scotland.

PACE is compromised of four main components:- a professional theatre production and theatre-in-education company; PACE Youth Theatre – the largest youth theatre in the UK with over 2,000 members; PACE Casting – a casting agency which represents youth theatre members; and PACE Media Productions – a media production company specialising in educational and dramatic video productions.

PACE Youth Theatre always welcomes new members to join the waiting list, and with famous past members including James McAvoy, Paulo Nutini David Sneddon and Richard Madden, the chance to join our workshops – based around confidence building, cooperation, communication and performance skills – is one not to be missed!

Visit Renfrewshire


I was although briefly at the launch of the new Visit Renfrewshire initiative yesterday with Visit Scotland, Renfrewshire Chamber of Commerce and the council as well as contributing partners.

They have been awarded something like 150k to promote Renfrewshire its attractions and events as well as promoting the area as a tourist destination, I think its a great idea and one that should be welcomed. has been launched in conjunction with the initiative and there are a lot of our images being used to help promote the town of Paisley.

I only have one drawback to this process as they seemed to have overlooked one of the only websites out their to promote the Largest town in Renfrewshire, Paisley… yes us

I wonder why big business think they can just seem to think their ideas are the only ideas and everyone else should heed thier line and not listen to other ideas or at least even look to see what other people are doing.

We have been promoting the town of Paisley in a positive light for near on ten years now and without the budget this organisation seems to have for their 3 year plan…

Passion & pride costs nothing…..

Renfrewshire Council for Voluntary Services – RCVS


Renfrewshire Council for Voluntary Services (RCVS) is a not-for-profit organisation that exists to help community and voluntary groups in any way we can for the greater good of Renfrewshire’s citizens. From securing funding, training staff and running events to handling payrolls, printing and the creation of promotional films, we aim to help local groups no matter what their needs are. We have a new website with the services we can offer and the ways we can work together for the better of all. It can be found at: