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Countdown is on to Sma Shot Day

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Countdown is on to Sma Shot Day

The first big date in Renfrewshire’s summer town centre events calendar arrives at the weekend with the return of family favourite Sma’ Shot Day.

The popular annual event – one of the oldest workers’ festivals in the world – will take place on Saturday 5 July in the usual place of Abbey Close.

Sma' Shot Day - Tony Lawler and Provost Anne Hall

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

Attractions at Abbey Close include funfair rides and stalls including the Slug in a Bottle market, featuring a mix of traditional and vintage clothing and accessories.

There will be performances throughout the day on the outdoor stage from PACE Youth Theatre Group as well as various local bands from LNP Promotions.

The day will culminate with the spectacular Burning of the Cork – which marks the victory of the 19th-century weavers over the mill owners – at 5pm.

Elsewhere, older folks can step away from the crowds at a tea dance in Paisley Town Hall from 1 to 3pm.

A full schedule for the day can be viewed at www.renfrewshire.gov.uk/events

To help promote the event, Renfrewshire’s Provost Anne Hall met up with Freeman of Renfrewshire Tony Lawler, who will take up his usual place beating the drum at the head of the parade.

Sma' Shot Day - Tony Lawler and Provost Anne Hall

Provost Hall said: “Sma Shot Day is always a popular family favourite and we hope to see a big crowd come out and enjoy the day.

“Last year’s event took place in blazing sunshine so fingers crossed the Paisley weather is kind and we get more of the same this year.

“Sma Shot Day is important because it helps keep alive a link to the area’s proud past at the heart of the world’s textile industry.

“The council has recently announced big plans to use Paisley’s heritage and culture to drive regeneration and tourism over the next decade, and events like Sma Shot Day will be part of that.”

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.

Sma' Shot Day - Tony Lawler and Provost Anne Hall

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

Any residents planning a trip into the town centre on Saturday are reminded that parking is free in all council-metered bays every weekend.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]

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Sma’ Shot Day Charleston Drummer Promotes Miscarriage Support

Tony Lawler

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Sma’ Shot Day Charleston Drummer Promotes Miscarriage Support

Leading the Sma’ Shot procession from Brodie Park to Abbey Close 2014 will be Charleston Drummer, Tony Lawler.

Tony will be modelling our new look Miscarriage Support tee-shirt on the day to help promote the counselling work that we do in aid of women and families Scotland-wide.

Tony Lawler

Tony Lawler pictured last year supporting MND Scotland

The Sma’ Shot Day celebration originates from the weaving industry in the 19th Century. Paisley was a one of the major textile producing areas in the British Empire.

The Sma’ Shot was the binding thread which held together the patterned shawls which Paisley is famous for; but because the Sma’ Shot was never seen in the finished shawls the manufacturers refused to pay the weavers for the yarn. After many years of dispute the weavers won their course.

In celebration of this, the traditional July holiday was renamed Sma’ Shot Day. The 2014 procession will take place on the 5th of July; come along and see the parade and give a big cheer for Tony.

– See more at: http://www.miscarriagesupport.org.uk/sma-shot-day-celebrations-2/[/vc_column_text][vc_separator icon=”star”][/vc_column][/vc_row]

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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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Freedom of Renfrewshire

Tony Lawler

Everyone at www.paisley.org.uk would like to say a hearty ‘Congratulations’ to Tony Lawler who today discovered that he has been granted the honour of Freeman of Renfrewshire.

The Freedom of Renfrewshire has only been granted twice to our knowledge in the last few years, the most recent being The Argyle and Southern Highlanders also renowned

Tony Lawler

Sculptor Sandy Stoddart and prior to that it had not been awarded for 50 years.

Renfrewshire Council made Tony a Freeman of Renfrewshire in recognition of him carrying the Charleston Drum and leading the parade on Sma’ Shot Day for 20 years.

Those who know Tony will acknowledge that he is mightily proud of being given this position and he continually promotes the town of Paisley to the wider public.

(Pictured right is Tony Lawler, The Charleston Drummer with Renfrewshire Provost Anne Hall)

For more on Sma Shot Day 2012 click here

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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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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