[vc_row][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_column_text]

Renfrewshire youngsters’ experiment heading for outer space

Six Renfrewshire students are reaching for the stars after hearing their science experiment will be blasted into space and carried out on the International Space Station.

The once-in-a-lifetime prize was their reward for taking part in Mission Discovery Renfrewshire – a week-long space school run by former NASA astronauts.

Mission Discovery winning team

Paisley Town Hall was the venue for the first-ever visit to Scotland of the event, run by a team including former Space Shuttle Commander Ken Ham and his wife Michelle, a former NASA astronaut trainer.

Around 200 local S4 to 6 pupils were split into teams, each mentored by a student from University of the West of Scotland or West College Scotland, and asked to devise a science experiment knowing the winning concept would go into outer space to be carried out for real.

And amid emotional scenes, a delighted winning team of Apollo 12 – who want to test bacteria to help find a cure for the eye condition conjunctivitis – were named as the winners, in a moment captured by a TV crew from STV News.

There was further joy when Michelle Ham surprised the runners-up by announcing that there may be room on the space station for their experiment too.

The winning team are: Ben Herrington, Christopher Withers, Katherine Bogan, Lara Cumming and Olivia Ramsay, plus mentor Callum Mort of UWS.

Mission discovery finale 26

Ben, 15, of Park Mains High in Erskine, said: “The whole thing is just amazing. When we were told we were the winners I almost collapsed – it was really overwhelming.

“Michelle and Ken are such inspiring people – they make you think that anything is possible.”

Ken Ham added: “The whole reason we do these things is for that moment of realisation when the when the winning team is told their intellectual property is going into space. It’s always just a really amazing moment.”

Mission Discovery Renfrewshire was run by the International Space Station Educational Trust, and brought to Paisley by Renfrewshire Council and event sponsors University of the West of Scotland and West College Scotland, with additional support from Renfrewshire Chamber of Commerce and 29 Studios.

Renfrewshire Council Leader Mark Macmillan added: “I would like to thank all connected with Mission Discovery and ISSET for being such superb guests.

“They made the whole week an unforgettable one for the young people who took part, and were utterly inspirational figures to be in the company of.

“We want to provide the very best opportunities for our young people and last week they did us proud – the organisers were full of praise for their commitment and the quality and ingenuity of their work.

“The next decade or so opens up massive opportunities in terms of commercial space flight – and with the science and technology industries we already have here in Renfrewshire, this area could be a part of that.

“Ken and Michelle have certainly shown the sky is no limit in terms of what you can achieve if you put your mind to it – and who knows whether the first-ever Scottish astronaut may well have been in that room last week.”

Mission Discovery - Ken and Michelle Ham on stage with top two teams[/vc_column_text][vc_separator icon=”star”][vc_column_text]Courtesy of Renfrewshire Council.[/vc_column_text][vc_separator icon=”star”][/vc_column][/vc_row]

[vc_row][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_column_text]

Pipe band contest is drum-thing special

Some of the top pipe bands in Scotland took to the street of Paisley town centre on Saturday for the fifth annual instalment of the Paisley Pipe Band Competition.

Not even the rain could drown out the sound or spirit of the pipe and drums, or the hundreds who lined the streets to take in the contest.

Paisley Pipe Band competition 2014

The route saw bands march down the High Street to the main arena in County Square, for judging by the Royal Scottish Pipe Band Association Glasgow and West of Scotland branch.

The Renfrewshire Council-organised event saw pipers travel from as afield as Northumberland, Milngavie and Dunoon, to compete alongside local bands from Johnstone and Kilbarchan.

The chieftain of the event was Renfrewshire’s Provost Anne Hall, who said: “On behalf of all involved, I would like to say a massive thank-you to everybody who came along.

“Whether there to take part or just to watch and support the pipers, people didn’t let the rain stop them enjoying the occasion.

“By their nature, days like today are at the mercy of the weather – but we were pleased with the size of the crowd under the circumstances.

Pipeband 10

“Events like this are a big part of what the council is trying to do in terms of using heritage and culture to drive tourism and regeneration in Paisley and Renfrewshire.

“It’s been a busy period for events in Renfrewshire – we had an absolutely sensational day during the week when the Queen’s Baton Relay passed through, with tens of thousands taking to the streets to see it, and the whole day was a joy to be a part of.

“And we only have a few days to wait until our next town centre event with StreetVelodrome – the world’s only pop-up track cycle race event – taking place in County Square on Saturday.”

For more information on local events, visit www.renfrewshire.gov.uk/events

[/vc_column_text][vc_separator icon=”star”][/vc_column][/vc_row]

[vc_row][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_column_text]

Launch of Renfrewshire Sports Charity

Hundreds of people turned out to soak up the sunshine, entertainment, BBQ and free fun events at Pro-Life in Paisley to celebrate the launch of Renfrewshire Sports Charity.

There was a wonderful party atmosphere as young boys and girls got the chance to try their skills at water zorbing, beat-the-bull and keepie up as well as being entertained by Bubbles the Clown and having their faces painted.

The two bouncy castles were a huge hit and there was also a free Rockettes workshop where young fans of the cheerleading group got a chance to learn some new moves.

Adults got into the beat with a variety of acts and music from Entertainment Express while the burger stall, barbeque and free buffet kept hungry visitors satisfied. The RSC team has been up since dawn preparing for the debut event and every minute spent preparing proved worthwhile.

There were happy faces all round.

During the celebrations businessman Alex Whelan took to the stage to explain why he had gifted the Pro-Life gym to the charity and urged everyone to back their efforts as he took a back seat. Every new membership will mean £400 for the hospices.

There were loud cheers and claps after both Helen Simpson, chief executive at ACCORD and Kate Lennon, chief executive at St Vincent’s spoke to the crowds about the work of the hospices and hopes for the future.

Helen told the crowd she spoke for both hospices when she said what a wonderful gentleman Alex was – humble and kind and truly unique in giving such a gift to help people with life limiting illnesses.

“It is also wonderful that Renfrewshire Sports Charity is supporting young sports people because as we improve people’s health and reduce chronic illnesses hospices won’t be needed so much in the future. Your membership here is supporting your local hospice and we are lucky to have it.”

Kate told visitors that one woman whose husband was in the hospice was telling her how much she appreciated the support and kindness of the staff and she summed up her experience by saying ‘Coming here is like having a big pair of arms wrapped around you’ .

Kate added: “For me that just says it all.”

Two special plaques were awarded to Linwood Rangers and Saltire Boxing Club by Ian Lynchahon, chairman of SportRenfrewshire in appreciation of all their work in the community over a number of years.

Deone Robertson, the reigning Miss Galaxy Scotland, and spent time mingling with the crowds and said: “I work out at Pro-Life and think this new charity venture is wonderful. It’s the best gym in Renfrewshire and I am proud to be here today to be part of all of this.”

Babs McGinlay, 55, a Buddie who moved to Canada 30 years ago was back in her home town on holiday and decided to visit the open day after friends told her the story of how the hospices benefit from gym memberships.

She said: “It’s a wonderful idea and one which I will take back to Ontario with me as I volunteer for a cancer charity near my home. What a fabulous way to raise money and there’s such a happy atmosphere here today.”

Gayle Brannigan, chief executive of Renfrewshire’s newest charity, said: “We wanted people to come along and enjoy themselves. It was our way of saying thanks to those who support the charity through Pro-Life because every membership means money for ACCORD and St Vincent’s.

“We issued an open invitation to the whole community to come along and the turnout was magnificent. We had a fabulous crowd and we also had the chance to shout out loud and proud about what we want to achieve for our two hospices as well as highlight what we want to do for our promising young sportsmen and women.

“The team at RSC will be working hard to raise hundreds of thousands of pounds for the hospices but we can’t do it alone. We need the support of the community and if the open day is anything to go by we have their blessing.

“Anyone interested in finding out how they can help the charity by staying fit and healthy should just give us a call and we will tell them all about our work on behalf of the hospices.”

[/vc_column_text][vc_separator icon=”star”][/vc_column][/vc_row]

[vc_row][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_column_text]

Tens of thousands watch as baton relay wows Renfrewshire

Tens of thousands of residents from across Renfrewshire got into the Commonwealth spirit when the Queen’s Baton Relay arrived in the area for a sensational day of sport, scorching sunshine and spectacle.

Huge crowds turned out in towns and villages and enjoyed fantastic weather and a tremendous atmosphere as every one of Renfrewshire’s 15 towns and villages got the chance to join the fun.

The baton – the symbol of the Glasgow 2014 Games – was passing through Renfrewshire on Day 34 of a 40-day tour of Scotland before the main event starts next week.

Along the way, Renfrewshire Council had laid on a series of events for locals in each of the main towns, lending a festival feel to the occasion.

The day started in Howwood at 8am, before a crowd of more than 1,000 saw actress and singer Clare Grogan carry the baton into Johnstone’s Houstoun Square later that morning.

Provost Anne Hall with Clare Grogan

In the afternoon, the baton covoy was mobbed as it greeted the crowd at Erskine’s Park Mains High, before around 5,000 people packed into the streets around Renfrew Town Hall as the baton was given a rock-star welcome.

Paisley was the last leg of the journey, with stops in Gallowhill and Ralston before the baton was carried into a packed Abbey Close ahead of a spectacular finale performance by the Commonwealth Youth Circus.

The baton was carried by around 150 batonbearers, most of them residents specially selected in honour of their community work, with wellwishers from around the area lining the route to cheer them on.

Other high-profile batonbearers included broadcaster Shereen Nanjiani, who carried the baton into Erskine Hospital at lunchtime, while Olympic swimmer and Scottish Commonwealth gold medallist Gregor Tait was the athlete given the honour of the final leg into Paisley’s Lagoon Leisure Centre.

Renfrewshire’s Provost Anne Hall was out and about at many of the events during the day.

She said: “This was a very special day for Renfrewshire. People really took the event to their hearts and played their part in what was a very exciting spectacle.

“The baton has made an epic journey around the globe, meaning today was a chance to write our own chapter in that long-running story – and Renfrewshire didn’t disappoint.

“The route allowed us to show the world everything that makes the area great – from rolling countryside to historic town centres to modern schools and leisure facilities.

“But above all we have a great sense of community – never better displayed than by our batonbearers, and by the people who lined the streets to cheer them on.

“I would like to thank everybody who came out and made this such a fantastic day.

“It was an absolute pleasure to be there, and to see people young and old enjoying the occasion on a day that will live long in the memory.”

Many of the events on the day took place in partnership with the Games for Scotland programme, managed by EventScotland, which forms a key part of Legacy 2014 – the Scottish Government’s commitment to deliver a lasting legacy as a result of the Commonwealth Games coming to Scotland.

The Games for Scotland programme of events are an opportunity for people to celebrate the arrival of the QBR to their local community while continuing to build on the Games legacy, whether that be through taking part in a cultural event, working together to celebrate the Games, or being inspired to become more active.

Courtesy of Renfrewshire Council.

[/vc_column_text][vc_separator icon=”star”][/vc_column][/vc_row]

paisley from drone

[vc_row][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_column_text]

UWS announced as ROCCO 2014 Main Sponsor

Renfrewshire Chamber is delighted to announce the University of the West of Scotland as the Main Sponsor for its annual business awards, the ROCCOs. Now in its 11th year the ROCCO Awards is the area’s premier black tie business event attracting 500 guests every year.

Commenting on the news Chamber President Tom Johnston said “Thank you to UWS for their support, we are delighted they are main sponsor for the ROCCOs in 2014, the 50th anniversary of Renfrewshire Chamber. The Chamber has enjoyed a strong relationship with the University for many years. Myself and our CEO studied there with our Deputy CEO currently studying for his MBA also. Under the leadership of new Principal Professor Craig Mahoney, UWS has an exciting future and we are committed to working with them”.

Commenting on the announcement of UWS as ROCCO main sponsor, Professor Craig Mahoney, Principal & Vice Chancellor of UWS, said: “The University is committed to working with organisations in its campus areas to help enhance the economy and skills of the local areas. This distinctive and important regional role is a key strand of our strategic aims for the West of Scotland, as well as strengthening our presence in the national and international arenas.

“Renfrewshire Chamber of Commerce makes a hugely important contribution in creating prosperity for the region and we are delighted to support the Chamber and be the main sponsor for the ROCCOs in 2014. I’m also encouraged, of course, to hear of the successful careers of our alumni, now in senior positions with Renfrewshire Chamber!”
The ROCCOs are now open for entry. All members of Renfrewshire Chamber can enter for free and also non-members that are based in Renfrewshire. Winning a ROCCO is a great achievement — the ROCCO brand is recognised across Renfrewshire and beyond and a great accolade for all finalists & winners. The ROCCOs are a celebration and a great way to reward staff & clients.

The awards ceremony for 2014 will take place on Friday 14th November at The Normandy and be hosted by ROCCO regular, Fred MacAulay. Companies are advised to book early to avoid disappointment.

For more info, to enter any of the 16 categories or book a table please visit www.roccoawards.com

The 16 categories are:

1. Business Leader of the Year sponsored by Diageo
2. Community Champion of the Year sponsored by Engage Renfrewshire & RBS
3. Employer of the Year sponsored by Rolls Royce
4. Enterprise in Education sponsored by the University of the West of Scotland
5. Excellence in Customer Service sponsored by intu Braehead
6. Excellence in Manufacturing sponsored by the Scottish Leather Group
7. Family Business of the Year sponsored by The Malcolm Group
8. Innovation & Technology sponsored by Hillington Park
9. International Trade sponsored by Glasgow Airport
10. Invest in Renfrewshire sponsored by Renfrewshire Council
11. Journey to Zero Waste sponsored by the William Tracey Group
12. Most Promising New Business sponsored by Business Gateway Renfrewshire
13. Outstanding Performing Business >25 staff sponsored by the Phoenix Car Company
14. Outstanding Performing Business <5 staff sponsorship available
15. Outstanding Performing Business >5 & <25 staff sponsored by Renfrewshire Council
16. Young Business Person of the Year sponsored by West College Scotland

Entry closes Friday 5th September at 5pm

Picture attached: left Tom Johnston Chamber President, right – Professor Craig Mahoney, Principal & Vice Chancellor of the University of the West of Scotland[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]

[vc_row][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_column_text]

Provost invites Renfrewshire to reflect on First World War centenary

Renfrewshire’s Provost, Anne Hall, is inviting local people to join her in marking the moment when Britain declared war on Germany and become involved in the First World War.

A multi-faith service is being held at St Mirin’s Cathedral, Paisley on 4 August as part of the Renfrewshire Reflects commemorations.

renfrewshire reflects

The service is open to the public and tickets are not required. Anyone interested in attending should contact Dorothy Kerr on 0141 618 7578 or email dorothy.kerr-es@renfrewshire.gov.uk.

The service starts at 10.15pm and finishes at 11pm when a candle will be symbolically extinguished, reflecting the words of Sir Edward Grey, the then Foreign Secretary, when he said, “The lamps are going out all over Europe and we shall not see them lit again in our lifetime.”

The service includes hymns and scripture readings. Members of the PACE Youth Theatre will also be reading war poems and extracts from First World War letters sent by a mother to her son at the front and by a serving soldier to his wife.

Provost Hall said, “I would like to invite everyone who can attend to join me at St Mirin’s Cathedral on 4 August to mark the 100th anniversary of Britain’s entry into the First World War. We will not be celebrating the event. At the time, the First World War was the most terrible conflict humanity had ever seen. It was originally called the Great War and the War to End All Wars. We will be coming together to reflect on events which cost the lives of millions of people across the globe and give thanks for the peace that we enjoy.”

All the lights except one will also be switched off in Renfrewshire House, the council’s Paisley headquarters, as part of the Lights Out initiative. Lights Out is a UK wide invitation to everyone to turn off their lights from 10pm to 11pm on 4 August, leaving on a single light for a shared moment of reflection.

Britain declared war on Germany at 11pm on 4 August 1914 after the Germans refused to withdraw their forces from Belgium. Britain was bound by the 1839 Treaty of London to guarantee Belgium’s neutrality and come to its aid if the country was attacked.

Renfrewshire Council is taking part in a national programme of commemorative, educational, cultural and community events to mark the 100th anniversary of the outbreak of the First World War.

The events will honour and remember the lives of those who served in the First World War and those who were affected by it. The commemorations will span a four-year period from 2014 to 2018. They will focus on the impact of the war and on marking the significant events of the conflict. The service at St Mirin’s Cathedral marks the first key date.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]

[vc_row][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_column_text]


Britain’s most successful ever Olympian, Sir Chris Hoy MBE, visited Glasgow Airport today (Wednesday 16 July) to officially open its new international arrival area and declare the airport ready for the 2014 Commonwealth Games.

As part of its extensive preparations for the Games, Glasgow Airport has invested in excess of £17 million over the course of the past year enhancing large parts of the main terminal building. This included international arrivals which for many will be the gateway to the Games.

Sir Chris Hoy MBE, officially opened Glasgow Airports new look International arrivals.

The airport is one of three official non-competing venues and the investment will ensure it is looking its best when it provides a warm welcome and fond farewell to the thousands of athletes, games officials and visitors who will pass through its doors during the coming days and weeks.

Other aspects of the refurbishment included modernisations to the main check-in hall, the landscaping of a new public space at the front of the terminal, and general improvements to the airport’s road network. Over £1.5 million was also spent on upgrading the toilet facilities.

Sir Chris Hoy MBE, officially opened Glasgow Airports new look International arrivals.

Eleven-time world champion, six-time Olympic champion and former Commonwealth Games champion Sir Chris, was joined by Glasgow Airport’s managing director, Amanda McMillan, David Grevemberg, Chief Executive Glasgow 2014, and Clyde, the official Glasgow 2014 mascot.

Amanda McMillan, managing director of Glasgow Airport, said: “Our £17 million investment represented one of the most significant and comprehensive upgrades to the airport since it was first opened in 1966. We’re absolutely thrilled with the end result which has truly transformed the entire look and feel of the airport.

“As the gateway to the Games, it was extremely important to us that we were able to provide a positive and welcoming first impression of the city and Scotland. I believe we’ve achieved that and we’ve delivered a facility that everyone associated with the airport can be proud of.

Sir Chris Hoy MBE, officially opened Glasgow Airports new look International arrivals.

“These large scale improvements will be our legacy from the Games and it is entirely fitting that our greatest ever Olympian, Sir Chris Hoy, was able to perform the honours by officially opening our new international arrivals. We are now looking forward to welcoming all those who will be flying in to participate in what will be the largest sporting and cultural event Scotland will ever have hosted.”

Sir Chris Hoy added: “It’s been a real pleasure to visit Glasgow Airport today to officially open the new international arrival area. The airport is looking in great condition, and it is clear that a huge amount of time, energy and resources have been put into developing the terminal building.

“The eyes of the world will be on Glasgow over the next few weeks in the run up to the 2014 Commonwealth Games. The new international arrivals area will be the first taste of the city that athletes and visitors experience, and I’m confident that Glasgow Airport will ensure that it will be a welcome gateway for them all.”
David Grevemberg, Chief Executive of Glasgow 2014, said: “The airport will be the first place many of our athletes, officials and spectators see when they arrive in Glasgow for the Games and what a great impression they will get of the city and of Scotland. The £17million investment has transformed the main terminal, the international arrivals areas and created a great new landscaped public space in front of the terminal. The new-look airport, together with our team of friendly clyde-siders who are on hand to meet and greet people as they arrive for the Games, really will ensure everyone receives a warm welcome from the minute they touch down.”

Councillor Gordon Matheson, Leader of Glasgow City Council, said: “This investment further reinforces Glasgow’s position as Scotland’s premier airport and will bring lasting benefits to the city long after the Commonwealth Games have finished. Our airport plays a crucial role in the economy of west central Scotland with over 7.5million passengers coming through the terminals each year, and this fantastic refurbishment will ensure it continues to meet the demands of an ever growing airport for years to come.”

Courtesy of Glasgow Airport.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]

[vc_row][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_column_text]

Paisley gears up for Highland fling with pipe band competition

Paisley residents will this weekend be able to enjoy the sight, sound and spectacle of some of the top pipe bands from throughout Scotland and beyond.

The fifth annual Paisley Pipe Band Competition will take place in the heart of the town centre on Saturday 19 July, between noon and 6pm.

Bands will gather on the High Street and march down towards the final tuning area at the Cenotaph, before heading down to the judging area in County Square.

There, judges from the Royal Scottish Pipe Band Association – West of Scotland branch, will judge the bands on their performances across the various grades.

The winners will be announced at 5.30pm in County Square, before a performance by the massed bands.

The programme for the day will see Johnstone and Kilbarchan pipe bands go head to head with pipers from as far afield as Milngavie, Camelon, Dunoon and Northumberland.

The Chieftain of the event will be Renfrewshire’s Provost Anne Hall, who says she is looking forward to presiding over the occasion.

She said: “This event is now a fixture in the area’s town centre events calendar and has attracted some big crowds to Paisley over the previous four years.

“I am delighted to be taking on the role of Chieftain on the day, which will – as always – be a fantastic spectacle.

“Plus, our continued hosting of the pipe band competition in the town centre is a perfect fit with the council’s ambitious plans to use heritage and culture to bring people into the town and boost tourism.”

Any residents planning a trip into the town for the pipe band contest are reminded that parking is free in all council-metered bays and car parks every weekend.

The Pipe Band Competition arrives during a busy ten days for the area’s events programme, sandwiched in between the visit of the Queen’s Baton Relay to each of the area’s 15 towns and villages on Thursday 17 July, before County Square hosts StreetVelodrome – the world’s only pop-up track cycle race, on Saturday 26 July.

For more information about this event and others happening in the area over the summer, visit www.renfrewshire.gov.uk/events[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]

[vc_row][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_column_text]

Festival of fun planned for Queen’s Baton Relay

The countdown is on until the Commonwealth Games Queen’s Baton Relay arrives in Renfrewshire later this week – with a full-day festival of fun planned.

Thursday 17 July will see the Baton – the symbol of the Glasgow 2014 Games – visit every one of Renfrewshire’s 15 towns and villages.


Renfrewshire Council has laid on a series of events along the route – which starts in Howwood at 8am and ends in Paisley around 6.30pm.

The highlight will be a 40-minute finale performance by the Commonwealth Youth Circus in Paisley’s Abbey Close at 6.30pm.

Members of the circus will be doing walkabout performances in the town centre during the day, with Pulse FM hosting live entertainment on stage in Abbey Close from 6pm.

Other events taking place around the area include:
– performances of The Pokey Hat street theatre show by Grinagog theatre company at Paisley Cross at 2.30pm and 4.45pm;
– street performers in Houstoun Square, Johnstone, from 8.30am to noon, with a performance of The Pokey Hat at 10.30am;
– street entertainers, face painters, kite-making and giant games in Renfrew Town Hall from noon until 5pm, plus sports hosted by Renfrewshire Leisure;
– the chance for members of the public to touch the baton in the grounds of Park Mains High School in Erskine from 2pm, plus a bouncy castle and giant games;

Any residents who want to get into the sporting spirit can come and try some of the Games sports at On-X sports centre in Linwood between 9am and 5pm.

To see the full street-level route map and find out when the baton visits your community – as well as the most up-to-date info on events and traffic – visit www.renfrewshire.gov.uk/qbr

The baton will be carried by around 150 specially-selected baton-bearers – many of them grassroots sporting and community champions from Renfrewshire.

Renfrewshire Council’s Queen’s Baton Relay programme is supported through Games for Scotland, managed by EventScotland, a key part of Legacy 2014 – the Scottish Government’s commitment to deliver a lasting legacy as a result of the Commonwealth Games coming to Scotland.

The Games for Scotland programme of events are an opportunity for people to celebrate the arrival of the QBR to their local community whilst continuing to build on the Games legacy, whether that be through taking part in a cultural event, working together to celebrate the Games or being inspired to become more active.

Renfrewshire’s Provost Anne Hall – who will be out and about with the baton on the day – said: “The visit of the Queen’s Baton Relay to Renfrewshire is shaping up to be a day that will live long in the memory.

“People in every community in Renfrewshire will get the chance to see the baton and honour the local heroes who have been selected to carry it on its way.

“And with family events being laid on in each of our five towns along the route, there will be loads going on to get people out and about on this special day.”

Paul Bush OBE, Chief Operating Officer for EventScotland said: “We are delighted to be working with Renfrewshire Council to deliver an inspiring and motivating event, building excitement in the run up to the Games.

“The Games for Scotland programme has been spreading the message of the Games around Scotland’s communities since 2010 and has proved to be hugely popular.

“The diverse programme of sport and dance events, which this year additionally celebrate the arrival of the Queen’s Baton Relay, extend the legacy of the Games beyond the host city to benefit communities throughout Scotland.”[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]

[vc_row][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_column_text]

Astronauts touch down for Renfrewshire space school

A team of former NASA astronauts, trainers and scientists have touched down in Paisley to run an exclusive one-week space school for 200 young people.

Mission Discovery is an international educational programme which has never before been brought to Scotland.

Renfrewshire school pupils from S3-S5 will be the first of their age group to have the opportunity to take part in Mission Discovery. They will be joined by students from both the University of West of Scotland and West College Scotland.

In teams they will work with the experts to come up with an idea for an experiment to be carried out in space. The best idea will be selected, built and launched to the International Space Station where astronauts will carry out the experiment.

The space school will be led by an expert team including:
– Former NASA Space Shuttle Commander Ken Ham,
– Former NASA Astronaut Trainer Michelle Ham
– Chris Barber, Director of International Space School Educational Trust (ISSET) and founder of Mission Discovery
– Tara M Ruttley, Associate Program Scientist for the International Space Station (ISS) for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and Johnson Space Centre (JSC) in Houston.
– Paul Colosky Jr, leading sports scientist who has worked with NASA on developing innovative exercise and health initiatives for astronauts in space

They will also learn NASA teambuilding, personal development and leadership skills.

Chris Barber, of ISSET, said: “We are delighted to be working with Renfrewshire Council to enable these boys and girls to have this fabulous opportunity to have their ideas carried out by real astronauts and sent to space.

“This means they are able to do something which is usually only open to the world’s elite scientists.”

Mission Discovery is part of a range of initiatives by Renfrewshire Council to enhance young people’s studies in Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) subjects.

Renfrewshire’s Provost Anne Hall said: “We are absolutely delighted to welcome the Mission Discovery team to Scotland for the first time and to be able to offer young people in Renfrewshire this amazing opportunity to benefit from their extensive experience in space travel, research and training.

“We are committed to educational excellence in Renfrewshire and are working closely with our partners to develop many exciting opportunities to enhance the study of sciences for students of all ages, with a particular focus on laying the foundations for young people to go on to successful careers in this field.”

Mission Discovery is sponsored by University of the West of Scotland and West College Scotland, who are working with Renfrewshire Council on establishing Renfrewshire as a centre of excellence in STEM studies.

This event is also being supported by Renfrewshire Chamber of Commerce and 29 Studios.

On display at the Mission Discovery event will be a model of the International Space Station, created by LEGO artist, Warren Elsmore, who will be bringing this, and other incredible LEGO creations to Paisley Museum in October for a new exhibition; Brick Wonders: Ancient, Natural and Modern Marvels in LEGO.

This exhibition follows on from the record-breaking success of the Brick City exhibition last year, and depicts the wonders of the world in LEGO. The exhibition will run from 11 October to 10 February.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]

[vc_row][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_column_text]

Pedal for charity plea from sports boss

A CHARITY cycling event has won the backing of Renfrewshire Leisure chief executive Joyce McKellar.
Not only is the Renfrewshire Leisure management trust that runs sports and leisure centres locally supporting the event organisation, Joyce herself has agreed to take part in the Renfrewshire 100 cycle ride.

The event is being held to raise money for Action Medical Research for Children – a charity saving and changing children’s lives from birth through research into diseases and disabilities.


Joyce – a keen road cyclist – is taking part in the Classic Route over a 70-mile course around the west of Scotland. There is also the more challenging Champion Route at 100 miles.

And she is urging cyclists to sign up for the Renfrewshire 100 event taking place from the On-X Sports and Leisure Centre, in Linwood, on Sunday, August 17.

Joyce says: “I would urge the many cycling enthusiasts out there to get on their bikes and take part in the Renfrewshire 100 as it’s a for very worthy cause.

“It will also be a fantastic day of cycling for both the novice and experienced cyclists. And the event will take us through a unique mix of town, country and coastal routes.”

The event is part of the popular Action Medical Research for Children RIDE100 series of one-day bike rides held across the UK. All the events include chip timing, food and water stations, lunch, marshals and mechanics.
The charity’s fundraising manager in Scotland, Janet Balcombe said: “Our RIDE100 events are very popular and we would hope to attract up to 600 cyclists taking part in the Renfrewshire 100.

“These fundraising events are vital to the work the charity does to help sick and disabled babies and children.
“We can’t thank the team at Renfrewshire Leisure enough for providing us with all the help we are getting.
“And of course, Joyce herself who is proving that actions speak louder than words as she gets on her bike and pedals her way around the Classic course.”

Log on to www.action.org.uk/100renfrewshire for more information and to register for the charity cycle event.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]

aircraft3 wizzair

[vc_row][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_column_text]




Wizz Air, the largest low-cost airline in Central and Eastern Europe*, today announced further enhancements to its low fare route network from Poland, with 6 new routes from 5 different airports. Flights to Glasgow from Katowice and Poznan will start on 26 October and 28 October respectively, from 27 October Warsaw will have a service to Bergen and Szczecin will be linked to London Luton, while two new destinations in the Netherlands will be added: flights to Groningen from Gdansk and flights to Maastricht from Katowice will start on 28 October.


Groningen, the 97th Wizz Air destination, is the largest city in the North of the Netherlands and known as the “Capital city for bicycling”. Maastricht, Wizz Air’s 98th destination, is located in the South of the Netherlands and is the birthplace of the European Union and the Euro currency. While it’s one of the oldest Dutch cities, it also has one of the youngest populations with students from all over Europe creating an international and vibrant lifestyle. The new services to the Netherlands, Norway and the UK complement what is already a great choice of low fare routes for Polish consumers.

With these 6 new services Wizz Air is now offering a total of 90 routes to 17 countries from Poland. While the airline increased its offer from Warsaw’s centrally located Chopin Airport by over 20% year on year this summer season, these new flights demonstrate Wizz Air’s commitment to increasing further the choice of low fare flights, growing tourism and supporting employment in the Polish regions. Tickets on Wizz Air’s newest Polish routes are already on sale and can be booked at wizzair.com.


New Route Days Starting date Fares from**
Katowice – Glasgow Wed; Sun 26 Oct PLN119
Szczecin – London Luton Mon; Wed, Fri 27 Oct PLN119
Warsaw – Bergen Mon; Fri 27 Oct PLN119
Gdansk – Groningen Tue; Sat 28 Oct PLN79
Katowice – Maastricht Tue; Sat 28 Oct PLN79
Poznan – Glasgow Tue; Sat 28 Oct PLN119


Wizz Air’s Daniel de Carvalho said: “We are thrilled today to announce 6 new routes from some of Poland’s largest cities. Passengers can now access Bergen in Norway conveniently from Warsaw Chopin airport on our very low fares while customers from Gdansk, Katowice, Poznan and Szczecin can also enjoy a larger choice of exciting Wizz Air destinations. We look forward to attracting more visitors to the Polish regions on our new services, which will support employment in the tourism and hospitality sectors. The launch of these new services is truly good news and our Polish speaking crew look forward to welcoming many passengers on board!”

Francois Bourienne, Glasgow Airport’s commercial director, said: “Wizz Air has been a successful addition to our airline roster, providing connectivity to key Polish destinations and growing its passenger traffic every month since its arrival here in March 2013. The decision by Wizz Air to launch new services to Katowice and Poznan later this year is great news for travellers in both countries, with Katowice in particular set to be popular with Scots travelling to nearby sites of cultural and historical significance such as Krakow and Auschwitz. Today’s announcement by Wizz means Glasgow Airport will soon be serving more Polish cities than any other Scottish airport.”[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]