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Fun in the sun as Sma’ Shot Day celebrated

Fun in the sun as Sma’ Shot Day celebrated

Renfrewshire residents had fun in the sun when the area’s big summer event calendar continued with Sma’ Shot Day.

Around 2,000 people gathered in Paisley town centre for the popular annual day out, designed to celebrate the 19th-century mill workers’ victory over their bosses in an industrial dispute.

The day kicked off at noon with the annual parade from Brodie Park to Abbey Close, headed by the familiar pounding of the Charleston Drum, carried by Freeman of Renfrewshire Tony Lawler.

The parade was joined for part of the route by St Mirren mascot Paisley Panda, who brought with him the League Cup.

At Abbey Close, speakers including Renfrewshire’s Depute Provost John Caldwell addressed the crowds, before DJs from Pulse FM took over the stage to provide entertainment.

Visitors were able to enjoy funfair rides, charity stalls, bouncy castle, craft market and mini-farm.

There was also a tea dance at Paisley Town Hall, and a film and display at Central Library on the life of celebrated Paisley trade unionist Willie Gallacher.

The day culminated, as always, with the spectacular Burning of the Cork – an effigy of a mill owner, which always meets a fiery ending.

Depute Provost Caldwell said: “Sma’ Shot Day is always a popular event for all the family, and I’m glad to say this year turned out no different.

“Events like this are a key part of the council’s strategy to get people into our town centres, so I was glad to see the day was so well attended.

“The event’s roots are connected to an important chapter in the history of Paisley and Renfrewshire and it is great to see people celebrating that to this day.”

Sma’ Shot Day celebrates the victory of Paisley’s weavers over the town’s mill owners in the 19th century.

The owners refused to pay their staff for the Sma’ (small) Shot thread which was unseen but held together the famous Paisley-patterned cashmere shawls.

A long fight and political battle ensued which the weavers eventually won and renamed the traditional July holiday Sma’ Shot Day.

Photographs courtesy of www.renfrewshire.gov.uk

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Area gets set for Sma’ Shot Day

Area gets set for Sma’ Shot Day

The countdown is on to one of the biggest events in Renfrewshire’s summer calendar when Sma’ Shot Day takes place on Saturday 6 July.

The popular annual event – one of the oldest workers’ festivals in the world – will run from noon until 5pm in its usual location at Abbey Close.

Tony Lawler with Depute Provost John Caldwell

The fun begins at noon when the parade, headed by the beat of the Charleston Drum, sets off from Brodie Park.

Attractions include funfair rides at Abbey Close and Paisley Cross, a stage hosted by Pulse FM, plus bouncy castle, craft market, a mini-farm and charity stalls.

The day will culminate with the spectacular Burning of the Cork at 5pm.

Elsewhere, older folks can step away from the crowds at a tea dance in Paisley Town Hall at 1pm, with free tickets available from the town hall.

And in keeping with the event’s roots as a celebration of the local textile workers’ victory over the 19th-century mill owners, Central Library will be hosting a display and film of the life of celebrated Paisley-born trade unionist Willie Gallacher.

Renfrewshire’s Depute Provost John Caldwell said: “Sma’ Shot Day is great tradition which celebrates an important episode in the town’s history.

“It is always a popular day for families, with plenty to entertain grown-ups and families alike, and I would encourage locals to get themselves along.”

Meanwhile, the man charged with drumming up a following for the event is hoping to stay injury-free this year.

Paisley man Tony Lawler is preparing for his 21st year beating the drum at the head of the parade.

He was at the centre of a brief drama last year when his enthusiastic drumming left him with a badly-cut hand – promptly bandaged by Provost Anne Hall, an ex-nurse.

Tony said: “I’m sure it will be great day, although I hope to avoid any injury this year!

“This will be the first Sma’ Shot Day I have done since being made a Freeman of Renfrewshire earlier this year, which means a lot to me.”

Tony Lawler with Depute Provost John Caldwell

Sma Shot Day celebrates the victory of Paisley’s weavers over the town’s mill owners in the 19th century.

The owners refused to pay their staff for the Sma’ (small) Shot thread which was unseen but held together the famous Paisley-patterned cashmere shawls.

A long fight and political battle ensued which the weavers eventually won and renamed the traditional July holiday Sma Shot Day.

Residents are reminded that parking is free in all council-metered bays on Saturdays and Sundays.

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Sma’ Shot Cottages Events

sma shot

Do you know about the Sma’ Shot Cottages?

Come along and have a lunchtime cuppa with us and learn more about Paisley’s history and the weaving industry in particular.

A series of three talks will be held in Sma’ Shot Cottages, 2 Sma’ Shot Lane at 1pm on the following three Wednesdays…the 6th, 13th and 20th of March.

Entitled ‘George Place and Shuttle Street in the past’, ‘Sma’ Shot Cottages today’ and ‘Local Studies’, a warm welcome (and a cuppa!) awaits all.

All talks are Free of charge..
Anyone interested should book a place by emailing us at sma.shot@virgin.net

sma shot

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Celtic Connections day at The Spree

Danny Kyle

Celtic Connections The Spree

Also Danny Kyle Stage in association with Celtic Connections

Sunday, 28 October 2012

The Spree, Scotland’s new national music and arts festival will launch in Paisley 25-28 October and will herald the year of Mod Phaislig 2013 (The Royal National Mod in Paisley).  Spree organisers have been working with Celtic Connections to bring a flavour of the Danny Kyle Stage back to his home town. The Spree will celebrate the emerging talent platform and what Danny Kyle did for some 89 acts.

Danny Kyle

Danny Kyle statue with previous Danny award-winner Breabach at Sma’ Shot Cottages, 11/17 George Place, Paisley

Danny put his stage together to give new artists the break they needed.  It toured folk festivals throughout the UK and helped to launch 89 new acts.  On Sunday, 28 October, the Danny Kyle stage will be in Paisley, in our Spiegeltent and doing its job well; showcasing the best in new Scottish talent.

Renfrewshire Council Leader, Mark MacMillan, is enthusiastic about the festival:

“We’re thrilled to welcome Celtic Connections to The Spree and to Paisley.  Our real town setting will add even more spirit and authenticity to what promises to be a great event.  Paisley’s people and businesses are already getting ready to welcome festival goers and Celtic Connections Sunday will provide a rousing end to The Spree.”

Donald Shaw, artistic director of Celtic Connections, added:

“We are delighted to be working with The Spree to bring a taste of the Danny Kyle Open Stage to Paisley. Every year at Celtic Connections the cream of new musical talent perform on Danny’s open stage and it is a great opportunity for young musicians to get recognised. Danny has left an incredible legacy to Scottish folk music.”

Celtic Music Radio’s Liz Clark, herself a long-time friend of Danny Kyle, will compere The Spree’s Celtic Connections day and introduce two previous Danny Award finalists. These include:

  • Breabach, who won ‘Best Group’ at the 2011 BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards and who have just wowed the Edinburgh Festival audience
  • Craig Jeffrey, whose debut album has become a favourite TV soundtrack choice
  • Maeve O’Boyle
  • Rory Butler

Danny Kyle died in the summer of 1998. He was one of the best loved and most influential people on the Scottish folk music scene. He’s remembered fondly for his sense of humour, his terrible ties and his very bonnie bunnet.

The Stonehaven Folk Festival chose to commemorate Danny with a statue by Penicuik artist Jan Miller.

Ewan Robertson, guitarist in Breabach comments: “Being named as finalists in the 2005 Danny Kyle Open Stage at Celtic Connections was a huge honour for us. Liz Clark and Gibb Todd have done a fantastic job continuing Danny’s work of discovering and promoting new Scottish music. It’s a legacy we’re really proud to be a part of.

“The band has developed and matured a great deal in the seven years since taking part in the open stage. With the interest and support we received following it we were able to launch a professional career.

“More recently we’ve added double bass into the mix, replaced 2 band members, released our 3rd studio album and toured in Europe, North America and Australia. Everything has just clicked into place and we’ve been having a ball.

“The prospect of playing the Spree in Danny’s home town is a really exciting one. We love to travel but ultimately the most special gigs are always the ones at home and we can’t wait for this one.”

Other features of the Celtic Connections day (outwith the Danny Kyle Stage) include:

  • Francois and the Atlas Mountains 
  • Bwani Junction 
For more information visit www.thespree.co.uk
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Sma Shot Day 2012

Saturday 7th July saw this year’s Sma’ Shot Day parade from Brodie Park to Abbey Close. 

This year the weather played a major part in the event – the night before the event the contractors who were tasked with setting up the many stalls outside Paisley Town Hall had major problems with the wind and had to construct two large marquees instead. The main parade was also hit by the weather when strong heavy rain tried to dampen spirits just before and during the parade but thankfully the parade and its participants all smiled and braved the rain.

Just as the parade started and was heading towards Neilston Road shops, Tony Lawler the Charleston Drummer hit straight through the side of the drum (which dates back to Napoleonic times) cutting his thumb in the process. The parade was temporarily halted but Tony was made of sterner stuff and the parade snaked its way down to Paisley Town Centre to lots of applause from those watching from the side.

The now traditional pint of lager at the Wellington was a welcome distraction for Tony and a welcome rest for the parade as it reached its half way point. As the parade hit Abbey close the crowds gave it a rapturous reception and the participants could relax.

From the pictures above, you can see the parade from start to finish as well as the excellent BMX Stunt Riders “The Clan”. The video below is the journey from Brodie Park to the end point in Abbey Close, you will notice the rain is a feature in almost all the images!

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Paranormal Activity At Sma Shot

sma shot

On Sunday 23rd September, Lanarkshire Paranormal will be investigating Paisley’s Sma’ Shot Cottages in Shuttle Street.

Lanarkshire Paranormal are an experienced team of paranormal investigators, carrying out investigations in reportedly haunted locations around Scotland and are solely driven to find the truth behind the sightings and reports that have been debated for centuries.

As a non-profit organization, from time to time Lanarkshire Paranormal invite the public to join them on an over night ‘ghost hunt’, donating the proceeds to charity.

Now a donation-run museum, Sma’ Shot Cottages has had many reports of paranormal activity including an apparition seen in the garden area and many ghostly noises and sounds throughout the building. Built in the 1700s, this location is very deceptive in size.

Lanarkshire Paranormal will be setting up cameras all over the building and trying many experiments with the public to find the truth behind the strange happenings people have been reporting for many years.

With only 15 tickets available, The Sma’ Shot Cottages investigation will be an exciting night, will anything happen when the lights go out?

Tickets costing £25 each, with 80% going to Sma’ Shot, can be booked via their website www.lanarkshireparanormal.co.uk. Age restrictions apply; investigation starts 9 p.m. until 3 a.m.

More information on Sma’ Shot Cottages can be found on their website http://www.smashot.co.uk/

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Sma Shot Day 2011

This years Sma Shot Day Festivities will take place on July the 2nd 2011.

The event will start from Brodie Park and take its traditional approach to Paisley Town Centre and Paisley Abbey where the burning of the cork will take place “see image”

The traditional event, which is one of the oldest workers’ festivals in the country, is one which is continuing to get larger each year and is certainly one a Paisley family event not to be missed.

Sma Shot Day celebrates the victory of Paisley’s weavers over the town’s mill owners in the 19th century. The owners refused to pay their staff for the Sma’ (small) Shot thread which was unseen but held together the famous Paisley patterned cashmere shawls.

A long fight and political battle ensued which the weavers eventually won and renamed the traditional July holiday Sma Shot Day.

You can find out more about Sma Shot day by visiting the Paisley History section and also we have lots more photographs on our Flickr Gallery..

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Sma Shot Day 2010

Paisley to light up for Sma’ Shot Day

Street dancers, stilt walkers, circus performers, drummers, a ceilidh and a spectacular fire show will all take place as part of Paisley’s historic Sma’ Shot Day festival this year.

The traditional event, which is one of the oldest workers’ festivals in the country, will take on a new twist this year culminating in a stunning fire display and free family ceilidh at night.

Sma Shot Day celebrates the victory of Paisley’s weavers over the town’s mill owners in the 19th century. The owners refused to pay their staff for the Sma’ (small) Shot thread which was unseen but held together the famous Paisley patterned cashmere shawls.

A long fight and political battle ensued which the weavers eventually won and renamed the traditional July holiday Sma Shot Day.

The traditional parade will begin at 12 Noon on Saturday 3 July, in Brodie Park, then make its way down Neilston Road, Causeyside Street, Gauze Street to Abbey Close.

Renfrewshire’s Provost Celia Lawson, who will be leading the parade, said: “Sma’ Shot Day is a unique festival that celebrates an important episode in Paisley’s history. It has been celebrated with a parade and family day for over 150 years but this year is going to be bigger and better than ever.”

A Radio Clyde Roadshow hosted by Gina McKie will play throughout the day in the town centre, where there will also be an interactive teen zone featuring music, street dance, drumming workshops, climbing wall, youth bus and mobile gym bus.

There will also be a special family fun zone at Abbey Close with a craft fayre and series of workshops for kids including circus skills, hula hoop, yoga and relaxation for kids.

As well as street performances PACE theatre company will perform the story of Sma’ Shot Day before the spectacular burning of the cork at 5pm at Abbey Close.

For this first time this year’s event will feature a marquee of stalls run by Renfrewshire’s Community Planning Partners including Renfrewshire Council, Renfrewshire Community Health Partnership, Strathclyde Fire and Rescue, who will be on hand to provide information on the services they provide to the community.

The annual tea dance will be held in Paisley town hall, followed in the evening by a free family ceilidh with world-renowned ceilidh band Clamjamfrie.

Provost Lawson added: “This year’s programme is our biggest ever with different activities, performances and entertainments happening throughout the town centre. We want as many people as possible to come along and enjoy this unique celebration of Paisley’s history so have added a whole range of fun things for people to do as well as the family ceilidh at night and the spectacular burning of the cork at Abbey Close.”

Sma shot day pictures below from http://www.flickr.com/photos/paisleyorguk