Paisley Pub Parties

Night life continues to rock in Paisley with the sweet sound of Republic of Soul. The band is a regular feature at the popular Hamishes Hoose, due to move premises next month.

“Who needs Glasgow when this local band always throws a great party?” asks our photographer Alex Kyle who was on hand when they last played in December. This Saturday, 26th, sees the return of this 8 piece band and it’s not the first time members of the audience have joined in creating a brilliant atmosphere.

Their eclectic mix of popular cover versions include: The Kinks, Rolling Stones, Chuck Berry and a splash of James Brown. Proving beyond doubt a night out in Paisley will make you feel good!

You can find out more on the Hamishes Hoose website or for more photographs visit Alex Kyles Facebook page here.

suicide memorial tree, purple hearts

Bereaved relatives gather for suicide memorial

Renfrewshire residents who have lost loved ones to suicide gathered in Paisley for a special service.

The event was organised by the local support group of Survivors of Bereavement through Suicide (SOBS), and was attended by Renfrewshire’s Provost Anne Hall.

Those attending the annual event met at council HQ in Cotton Street for a short service led by Reverend Alan Birss and Father Stephen Baillie

They then proceeded outside the building, to a special tree which was planted four years ago as a memorial for suicide victims.

The Provost laid a wreath and lit the tree, after which visitors had the chance to place purple hearts with messages written on them on its branches in memory of their loved ones.

Provost Hall – who welcomed guests to a reception in Paisley Abbey after the event – said: “Hearing the stories of people who have been affected by suicide really brings home the extent to which it affects the lives of those who are left behind.

“Events like this help raise awareness of the issue, and make sure anybody struggling to cope is aware they aren’t alone and help is out there.”

Moira Buchanan, 39, began attending SOBS meetings after her sister Mary took her life two years ago.

She said: “When it happens, you go through so many different feelings all at once. As individuals we have different experiences.

“When I first went along to the SOBS meetings, I found it quite incredible. You can talk in privacy and share your stories.”

The event was supported by Choose Life, the national strategy to prevent suicide in Scotland.

Local Choose Life co-ordinator Rosemary Mullan added: “Every day, two people in Scotland die from suicide, but talking about it can save lives.

“If you are worried someone is suicidal, ask them – it could make the difference. And if you feel suicidal, talk to someone you trust or call a helpline.”

The national helpline Breathing Space can be reached on 0800 83 85 87, and the number for The Samaritans is 08457 90 90 90.

For more information on the Renfrewshire meetings of SOBS, call 0141 849 2200, or email

Renfrewshire Council backs campaign against human trafficking

Renfrewshire Council is throwing its weight behind the Purple Teardrop Campaign designed to stop women and girls being sold into sexual slavery by human traffickers.

The campaign is being run by Soroptimist International, a world-wide women’s organisation which works to improve the lives of women and girls.

Renfrewshire Council is displaying the powerful Purple Teardrop Campaign posters in all its buildings. The posters list the warning signs which could show a house or flat is being used by human traffickers, and the Crimestoppers number.

Liz Cumming_ Cllr Maureen Sharkey_ Jean RamsayMrs Ramsay said, “We are greatly indebted to Renfrewshire Council for its continuing support and we hope other local authorities will follow its example in backing the Purple Teardrop Campaign.”

Jean Ramsay, Programme Action Officer of the Paisley Soroptimists, said, “Human trafficking is a global problem that affects millions of people across the world. But it isn’t something that just happens somewhere else. It happens here too. We want people to open their eyes and act.

“One overriding factor in the growth of trafficking is the fundamental belief that the lives of women and girls are expendable. In societies where women and girls are undervalued or not valued at all, women are at greater risk of being abused, trafficked and forced into sex slavery.

“Our message is, ‘Don’t shut your eyes, don’t turn your back on someone who needs help. Call Crimestoppers if you see something suspicious.’”

Councillor Maureen Sharkey, Renfrewshire Council’s representative on the Renfrewshire Women’s Association, said, “Slavery was supposedly abolished in Britain in 1807 but the recent case in Rochdale shows the horrific truth that it is thriving 200 years later.

“Victims are becoming younger and younger with girls as young as 11 being sold into slavery and forced to have sex with up to 30 men a day.

“Getting the evidence to prosecute traffickers can be very difficult. They control their victims with torture, fear and threats against their families. That is why it is so important for the public to be aware of what is going on and to report anything suspicious.”

Renfrewshire Council’s social work service already works closely with Strathclyde Police and the UK Border Agency to identify and assist victims of child trafficking who may be using Glasgow Airport as their gateway into the UK.

Human trafficking is a global problem but children and young people are being groomed for sexual exploitation and trafficking within the UK as well. There have been a number of cases where teenage girls, born in the UK have been trafficked between towns and cities.

The girls were groomed and lured away from their families by networks of boys and men using tactics similar to those used by child sex offenders.

Warning signs:
*       Physical symptoms (bruising indicating either physical or sexual assault)
*       Sexually transmitted diseases or unplanned pregnancy
*       Evidence of drug or alcohol misuse
*       Phone calls or texts from adults outside their normal group of friends
*       Adults hanging around outside the child or young person’s home
*       Significantly older boyfriend
*       Persistently going missing, staying out overnight or returning late with no explanation
*       Returning home after having been missing, looking well despite having no place to stay
*       Going missing for long periods with no place to stay
*       Having a lot of money, expensive clothes or mobile phones without being able to explain where they’ve come from
*       Having keys to properties that you don’t recognise
*       Low self-image, low self-esteem, self-harming behaviour including cutting, overdosing, eating disorder
*       Playing truant
*       Getting into or out of cars driven by adults you don’t know
*       Going missing and being found in places where the child or young person has no known links.

A property may be being used by traffickers if:
*       A lot of different men often visit
*       Different women seem to live there for short periods
*       Women are never seen outside alone, a man is always with them.

paisley from drone

Renfrewshire Chamber is hosting a Question Time style cross party Independence Debate in February.

Held at Reid Kerr College, Abercorn Conference Centre – this members only, free event will take place in the main lecture theatre from 12-2pm on the 15th February.

The confirmed panel are:

  • Annabel Goldie MSP – Conservative
  • Eileen McCartin – Liberal Democrat
  • Derek Mackay MSP – SNP
  • Douglas Alexander MP – Labour

The event will be hosted by STV presenter, John MacKay

Bob Davidson, chief executive commented “… members will get the opportunity to engage with the panel on what Independence means for Scotland, not only as a resident, but as a business owner or employee”.

The Chamber expects the event to sell out fast. The capacity of the theatre is just over 100, therefore members are encouraged to book quickly to guarantee a space.

Visit for more info


Call for local volunteers to befriend vulnerable young people

Renfrewshire Council’s Social Work service has issued an appeal for volunteers to a scheme helping some of the area’s most vulnerable children and young people.

The Befriending Youth Scheme pairs up adult volunteers with young people aged eight – 18 experiencing difficulties at home or in their local community. By acting as role model and building up a trusting relationship, the adult can help the young person develop more positive behaviour and attitude.

The scheme has had over 70 volunteers providing more than 10,000 hours of voluntary service in the past nine years. Many of these volunteers have used the experience as a stepping stone to further training or volunteering and even careers in social work.

Its success has attracted £5,000 of grant funding from the STV Hunter Appeal since 2010.

Councillor Iain McMillan, Convenor of Renfrewshire Council’s Social work, Health and Wellbeing policy board said: “As little as an hour or two of your time volunteering for this scheme can make such difference.

Renfrewshire_Council_ezg_1“Our befrienders don’t concentrate on the offending behaviour or a young person’s problems – they spend the time encouraging hobbies, skills and a better attitude. Taking the time to listen and share an interest or hobby is hugely important to building up self-esteem.

“We recruit ordinary adults of all ages from across Renfrewshire – what they all have in common is a genuine interest in helping young people.”

Befrienders are offered extensive training, ongoing support and out-of-pocket expenses.

For more information about the Befriending Youth Scheme, call  0141 618 6728 or email


Well-plaid! Residents asked to join Tartan Walk

Renfrewshire residents are being encouraged to be dressed to kilt as they step out in style for a Scottish-themed fun keep-fit event.

The area’s annual Tartan Walk event will take place in Lochwinnoch on Wednesday 23 January and organisers have extended the invitation to the public.

Renfrewshire_Council_ezg_1The route will take walkers round the outskirts of the village. Although there will be a few small inclines, it will be of a level suitable for everyone.

Walkers are encouraged to get into the spirit of the occasion by donning an item of tartan clothing for the Burns-Night-themed event.

Councillor Jim Harte, convener of the council’s Sport, Leisure and Culture Policy Board, said: “Events like this offer residents a chance to get out and about and meet new people while keeping themselves fit and healthy.

“I would encourage anyone who is interested to get themselves along to Lochwinnoch on the day.”

Walkers are asked to be at Castle Semple Visitor Centre in advance of the 11am start.

For more information, call the council’s sports development team on 0141 842 3000.



Notice is given that Renfrewshire Council has published a Proposed Local Development Plan for the Renfrewshire which is part of the process of preparing a new Local Development Plan. The Proposed Local Development Plan sets out the overall spatial strategy, key policies and proposals which provide the land use planning framework to guide development and investment over the next 10 years and will form the basis for decision making on planning applications. An Environmental Report, Supplementary Guidance and an Action Programme have also been prepared and all of these documents are available for inspection at the locations outlined below.

Renfrewshire_Council_ezg_1The Proposed Local Development Plan may be viewed at the Customer Service Centre, Renfrewshire House, Cotton Street Paisley, PA1 1LL between the hours of 8:00am and 6:00pm, Monday to Friday, at Council Libraries or online at the below address:

The proposed local development plan is available for inspection from 14 January 2013 until 25 February 2013.

Any person who wishes to make representations to the Council should use the Council’s consultation portal on the Planning and Building Standards page at:

or return completed response forms to:

The closing date for representations is 5.00pm, on Monday 25 February 2013.

If you need further information please contact Planning and Transport Service on 0300 3000 144.


st vincents hospice

St Vincent’s Hospice 25th Anniversary

The launch of the 25th Anniversary and £1m appeal for St Vincent’s Hospice took place on Wednesday 9th January at The Tall Ship in Glasgow. The event celebrated 25 years of care provided by the hospice to local patients and their families in Renfrewshire and surrounding areas and officially began the appeal to raise £1m in the anniversary year.
Names supporting the 25th Anniversary Appeal include broadcaster Shereen Nanjiani, STV meteorologist Sean Batty, and Shadow Foreign Secretary the Rt Hon Douglas Alexander MP.

At the launch, hosted by Shereen Nanjiani, a 3 minute film was shown about a local family receiving care at St Vincent’s and a hospice patient, family member and volunteer
Additional guests included Renfrewshire Provost Anne Hall, East Renfrewshire Provost Alastair Carmichael, members of the business community, and St Vincent’s Hospice supporters.

All Paisley Photographs taken for by Alex Kyle.


The launch of Paisley Rotary Club’s Quest4Talent 2013 took place on 7th January 2013 at 4.30p.m in The David Lloyd Centre Renfrew,

This is the 5th year of this highly successful competition which has already helped some of Renfrewshire’s most talented performers on the road to success as well as raising many thousands of pounds for local and international charities.

This year as well as the usual categories for soloists, groups, bands, instrumentalists, choirs and dance there are two exciting new categories; musical theatre and traditional music. The traditional Scottish Category is a particularly exciting one for us with the MOD coming to Paisley in 2013, and we are hoping to get entries from traditional musicians and artists in the area. We are taking entries from young people from the ages of 6 up to 25 years old from Renfrewshire and all surrounding areas in the West of Scotland. Closing date for entries is 28th February 2013.

(All Photographs were taken by Alex Kyle for )

This year our chosen charities to support are Street Stuff and PACE’s Abbey Road Project, as well as Rotary’s international charity.. End Polio Now. We have support from many local businesses and Celtic Music Radio are broadcasting the final for us.

The launch was hosted by BBC’s Sports presenter David Currie and David Wallace of PACE along with Rotary organisers an last year’s winners.

The Grand Final is on Saturday 20th April in Paisley Town Hall with the heats taking place during March at the David Lloyd Club and the Wynd Centre.

Entry forms can be downloaded on the website or tel Alison Walker on 0141 581 2193/2194

Last year’s winners were:

Overall winner and vocal 12-17 years winner – Jenna Milroy
Vocal 7-11 Rebekah Kirk
Vocal 18 -25 Robyn White
Instrumental 7-11 Jasmine Galvin
Instrumental 12-17 Rebekah Mitchell
Entertainment/Bands – Sinne ( Gaelic Folk group from Glasgow Gaelic School)
Choirs – Cardonald Primary School Choir
Dance – Gemma Lilley


Special service to remember those lost to suicide

A special service will be held to remember those who have lost their lives to suicide.

The ceremony will take place at council HQ in Cotton Street, Paisley, where there is a memorial tree for victims of suicide.

The event is being organised by the Renfrewshire support group of Survivors of Bereavement through Suicide (SOBS), and will be attended by Provost Anne Hall.

The service will take place on Thursday 17 January and will be led by Reverend Alan Birss and Father Stephen Baillie.

This will be the fourth year of the event – with the original tree dedication in 2010 thought to have been the first of its kind in Scotland.

Renfrewshire_Council_ezg_1Provost Hall said: “This is a worthy cause which we are happy to be able to support, and I want to extend the invite to any local people who wish to join us on the day.

“Suicide can affect people of all ages and backgrounds, but people should be aware there are various groups which can offer help, and that talking about it can save lives.”

Friends and relatives should meet from 3.15pm in the Marriage Suite at Renfrewshire Council to collect a commemorative purple heart on which they can write a message for their loved one.

The service will start at 3.45pm, after which there will be a procession to the tree, where the Provost will lay a wreath and visitors will be able to place purple hearts on the tree.

Afterwards, all attending are invited to join the Provost for refreshments in Paisley Abbey.

The event is being supported by Choose Life, the national strategy to prevent suicide in Scotland.

For more information on the Renfrewshire meetings of SOBS, call the local Choose Life co-ordinator on 0141 849 2200.

The national helpline Breathing Space can be reached on 0800 83 85 87, and the number for The Samaritans is 08457 90 90 90.


For regular updates on local news and events follow @RenCouncilNews on Twitter or our page on Facebook at

paisley from drone

Miss Teen Paisley Galaxy

My name is Amy Gardiner, i am almost 16 years old and lives in Glasgow. I recently entered a beauty pageant, MISS TEEN GALAXY 2013, and I’m delighted to inform you that i have made the grand final in March 2013.

My entrance fees into the competition was donated by Paisley Auto Care, which is run by a family member, so my sash title is MISS TEEN PAISLEY GALAXY 2013. If crowned the winner Miss Teen Scotland i will go onto representing Scotland in Miss Teen International next year, with the finals being held in USA!

MissTeenPaisleyGalaxyMy new found title has given her the opportunity to get keenly involved in charity work and appearances, even at the early stages of the pageant Amy has been involved in a number of projects. Amy continuely appears at the Yorkhill Sick Childrens Hospital visiting Radio Lollipop and also hosted the C-change Stars in ther Eyes charity night for disabled children alongside Barbara Bryceland (singer from BBC programme The Voice).

Amy is currently doing fundraising at the moment, already competed in the Glasgow 5k for funds for the Marie Curie Cancer Care and also planning a sponsored walk up the Wallace Monuement for Alzeimeirs Scotland.On Wednesday 26th Sept, Amy modelled at House of Frasers in Glasgow womanswear and accessories ( new winter range ), for the Barclays fashion awards. The show was broadcasted live on Captial FM. I will be appearing again at Frasers next Saturday 15th Dec 2012 between 1-3pm collecting for Yorkhill hospital.

I recently appeared on the open top buddy bus at the Paisley christmas parade. I have since helped fundraise at the St Vincent Hospice, and i will be drawing the winter xmas raffle for Accord. This weekend i am at the co-op christmas fayre in the Grovesnor Hilton, all profits going to cash for kids.

I am looking to make apperances at any events you may have upcoming in the near future, and also for some more sponsorship to help support me in the lead up to the final. I would appreciate anything you could offer to help her out. In return i can advertise your buisness at any upcoming events or apperances i in the near future, and also if you require, i can share links via facebook & Twitter. Anyone wishing for me to make an apperance or help out at any events, then please leave a message on my Miss Teen Paisley Galaxy facebook page…Thanks x

If you would like to learn more about me and what she has been involved in so far my facebook page is Miss Teen Paisley Galaxy 2013


with orchestra



Rehearsal: 230pm Performance: 6.30pm
(entry from 2.00pm)


Singers Audience
Adult £10 £8 at the door
Students/school pupils £5

Singer places will be allocated on a first come basis to enable the conductor to achieve as
balanced a choir as possible

NB Scores will not be provided on this occasion.
There will be no formal dress code

Information for singers on how to apply and pay etc. can be had at 0141 848 1392


If you cannot sing, do come along and join the audience at the performance at 6.30pm