The Scottish National Party has today highlighted the gross pensions inequality for women born in the 1950s and has urged the UK Government to “listen to the will of the people” and help the 2.6 million women who have been affected by rapid increases to the state pension age.


MPs have debated the issue in Parliament numerous times, including a Women Against State Pension Inequality (WASPI) campaign petition that attracted almost 200,000 signatures and a Backbench Business Debate which called on the UK Government to introduce transitional measures for the women impacted by the changes.  The SNP’s debate motion passed with overwhelming cross-party support and no opposition from the Government benches.

Today, SNP MPs led an Opposition Day Debate to keep up the pressure on the UK Government and ensure that the WASPI women receive the pensions they are due. The SNP led motion was defeated with 234 MPs for and 293 against.

Mhairi Black, MP for Paisley and Renfrewshire South said:

“This UK Government has treated the women impacted by changes to the state pension age with utter contempt – women born in the 1950s have had their retirement plans completely shattered and as if this wasn’t bad enough their democratic voice and the will of this Parliament is being ignored by this Tory Government.

“The UK Government must listen to the will of the people and act immediately to introduce transitional measures for the WASPI women.

“Debate after debate in the House of Commons has demonstrated the strength of public opinion on this matter and women across the country are struggling to make ends meet because they have been denied the pension they are due.

“The SNP’s independently-researched report shows that relaxing the rapid increases to the state pension age for women born in the 1950s back to the timetable set out in the 1995 Act would – at £8 billion – be significantly more affordable than the Tories’ claim that it would cost £30 billion.

“Instead of forking out for upgrades to the Palace of Westminster and billions on nuclear weapons, the Tories need to get their priorities right and deliver fairness for the millions of struggling women across the UK

“The UK Government should use the surplus in the National Insurance Fund to provide immediate relief to these women who have been badly let down are and due their pensions.”


renfrewshire council logo .JPG

Plans to secure the long term economic growth of the area were approved by Renfrewshire councillors today following proposals for a £274 million investment in new infrastructure projects.

renfrewshire council logo .JPG

The three City Deal investments – the Glasgow Airport Access Project, Glasgow Airport Investment Area and Clyde Waterfront & Renfrew Riverside projects were approved by councillors today and will also be considered by Glasgow City Councillors before being given the green light by the Glasgow City Region Cabinet in December.

The projects are intended to significantly boost the local economy by attracting investment, supporting businesses and creating jobs.

Renfrewshire Council Leader Mark Macmillan, who holds the Glasgow City Region Cabinet’s enterprise portfolio, said:

“I am delighted Renfrewshire councillors have given their backing to this major investment programme which will create long term jobs and bring huge benefits not only to Renfrewshire’s local communities but right across our city region. In order for us to keep growing our economy, we need to create an attractive location for business that offers first class connections by land, sea and air, with excellent links across the Clyde and to our town and city centres. Together these projects will open up the area to tourism and businesses.”

The £39.1m Glasgow Airport Investment Area project would develop a world class business and commercial location right in the heart of Renfrewshire. It includes plans for the realignment of Abbotsinch Road, a new bridge across the White Cart, and new cycle routes, all aimed at improving connections between the Westway, Inchinnan and Airport Business Parks and as an enabler for the delivery of a world class business and commercial offering centred around the airport.

The Clyde Waterfront & Renfrew Riverside project would see the construction of a new opening bridge across the River Clyde. This £90.7m project would better link the communities of Renfrew, Yoker and Clydebank, with new roads and cycle routes giving people improved access to employment, education, health and leisure locations.

Plans for the £144m Glasgow Airport Access Project were also approved which will deliver a hybrid tram-train system to provide the long sought-after direct rail link between Glasgow Airport, Paisley and Glasgow City Centre.

A series of engagement events for these two projects will now take place to give people the chance to meet the project team and ask questions they may have regarding the initiatives.

Paisley Town Hall will hold an engagement event on Tuesday 6 December and a second will be held at Renfrew Town Hall on Wednesday 7 December.

As the proposed opening bridge linking the communities of Renfrew, Yoker and Clydebank that forms part of the Clyde Waterfront and Renfrew Riverside (CWRR) project affects communities north of the river, events will also take place at Yoker Community Campus on Monday 5 December and at Clydebank Town Hall on Thursday 8 December.

All four engagement events will be open from 11am to 7pm.

Anyone attending the events will also be able to see a video of plans for the separate Glasgow Airport Access Project, which will be considered alongside Renfrewshire’s other two City Deal projects by Councillors at Renfrewshire’s Leadership Board on 30 November then by the Glasgow City Region Cabinet on 13 December.

Upcoming events in the Hoose – see flyer for details.


Hundreds of supporters descended on Paisley to join the Reclaim the Night march which forms part of the international 16 Days of Action campaign.

Campaigners march to ‘Reclaim the Night’

Campaigners march to ‘Reclaim the Night’

The candle-lit march was organised by local women’s rights group Renfrewshire Rising and showed the communities support for a women’s right to be free of violence and abuse.

The march started outside the University of the West of Scotland and was led by Renfrewshire’s Provost Anne Hall and Tony Lawler- who generated a rousing atmosphere using the Charleston Drum.

Campaigners marched down Paisley High Street and into Dunn Square, where speeches were made in recognition of the cause and Provost Hall laid a remembrance wreath for those lost to domestic violence.

Campaigners gather in Dunn Square for speeches and the laying of a remembrance wreath

Campaigners gather in Dunn Square for speeches and the laying of a remembrance wreath

The march continued to Paisley Abbey where there was a performance by the Renfrewshire Rising choir- led by Gordon Rigby, formally of the BBC and the Scottish Philharmonic Orchestra- before White Ribbon Scotland brought proceedings to a close.

The procession was part of the wider international 16 Days of Action campaign- which takes place from 25 November to 10 December this year and aims to raise awareness of the issue on a global level.


The theme in Renfrewshire this year is ‘Not Just A Women’s Issue’ and men are encouraged to join the action and show their support by wearing a white ribbon during the 16 days..

Provost Hall said: “The 16 Days of Action campaign is vital as it brings the issue of domestic violence into the public eye and we must ensure people recognise that it is unacceptable.

“The campaigners put tremendous effort into ensuring awareness is raised about the issue and it was fantastic to see the number of people out to support the cause.

“I am proud to take part in the march and would encourage everyone to support the campaign in any way they can.”

Walk a Mile in Her Shoes will take place on Tuesday 6 December, 12pm for 12:30pm start, and will follow the same route as the Reclaim the Night march. You can find out more via www.renfrewshire.gov.uk/events.

Anyone suffering from domestic violence can get help via two national helplines, which are available 24/7 and are free to call from a landline.

Scottish Domestic Abuse Helpline – 0800 027 1234

Abused Men in Scotland Helpline – 0808 800 0024

Locally, Women and Children First can be contacted on 0300 300 0345

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Renfrewshire North & West MSP Derek Mackay joined locals at the Renfrew amenity site to celebrate the restoration of full services at the facility.

Derek Mackay MSP with Councillors Bill Perrie, Cathy McEwan, Jim Paterson and locals at the re-opened Renfrew Amenity Site – Monday 28th November 2016

Derek Mackay MSP with Councillors Bill Perrie, Cathy McEwan, Jim Paterson and locals at the re-opened Renfrew Amenity Site – Monday 28th November 2016

Services were today (Monday 28th November) restored at the Renfrew, Johnstone, Erskine and Linwood sites following a u-turn by Labour led Renfrewshire Council.

It was announced on 6th September 2016 that Labour led Renfrewshire Council had performed a u-turn on their decision to downgrade the sites.

From 30th June 2016 the sites stopped accepting scrap wood, white goods, furniture and other large items, with the opening hours also being cut. This was despite local objections and a petition of more than 2,000 signatures from Renfrew residents.   The petition was rejected by Councillors at Renfrewshire Council’s petitions committee.

It has since been revealed that the decision to downgrade and then re-open the sites will cost the Renfrewshire tax payer £281,000.

Speaking from the Renfrew Amenity Site, Derek Mackay MSP said:

“Today is a victory for the people of Renfrewshire. For months locals have petitioned, wrote letters and lobbied Labour-led Renfrewshire Council for this outrageous decision to be reversed.

“Seeing the sites finally restored to full services today is down to their hard work and they deserve great credit for the campaign they have run over the past 12 months.

“As I have said before, this was a situation which was completely avoidable from the start if Labour had simply listened to public opinion. Instead they ignored locals and stubbornly pressed ahead with their plans to downgrade the sites.  This was a decision which has now cost the Renfrewshire tax payer over a quarter of a million pounds.

“What’s more, residents across my constituency have been without these facilities for 5 months, and the Underwood Road site in Paisley has been pressed to breaking point. This is despite the u-turn being announced nearly 3 months ago.

“However, there will be plenty for time in the future for further questions over this appalling fiasco. Today is a day to celebrate this victory; a victory for the people of Renfrewshire; a victory for community activism.”

Renfrew Resident and Community Councillor Callum Reid, who organised the original petition against the changes added:

“I am delighted that at long last our amenity sites are restored to their original condition.

“The petition would have been nothing without the local people who signed it. They are owed a massive debt of gratitude for coming together and campaigning positively for the reversal of the unwanted and unneeded changes. This is everyone’s victory, not just one individuals or group. It is a victory for people power and everyone should be proud of that.”

Retired Renfrew Councillor Bill McGuinness, who presented the petition which was rejected by Councillors, to the Council’s Petitions Committee, said:

 “It is great seeing the sites open for business again. People have missed this facility and have been frustrated by the original decision and then the delay in re-opening. The cost of the thing has been a shambles.

“Great credit must go to the opposition Councillors and Derek Mackay for campaigning hard on this and making sure the public had a voice.”


The K9 Way

An original Burns manuscript that has been in Paisley Museum and Art Gallery’s collection for almost 100 years, but was only recently rediscovered and authenticated, is to go on display in the museum every January when light levels are low enough to protect the delicate ink on paper artifact, and to coincide with Burns Night.


Announcing the month-long exhibit in 2017 (January 17 – February 19) for St. Andrew’s Day (November 30), Renfrewshire Leisure chair, Councillor Jim Harte, said, “I am absolutely delighted that the only existing manuscript of a lovely piece of Burns social verse will be on display in Paisley Museum in the New Year for a limited period and each subsequent January thereafter.

“We are proud to possess this charming piece and thrilled to share it with visitors during what is an extremely important time for Scotland’s largest town. We will be finalising Paisley’s bid for the title UK City of Culture 2021 during the early part of 2017 and this fantastic exhibit reveals yet another layer to our fascinating culture.”

The short verse, written in reply to a party invitation, is in typical Burns style  including wordplay – he combines the tradition for indicating the day of writing with something that suggests he is worse for wear, in “Foorsday”; highlights his joy at the invite, and pledges his attendance whether by horse, or by cart.

The artifact was verified in a letter to the Museum last year by Professor Gerard Carruthers of the Centre for Robert Burns Studies at the University of Glasgow. He said:

“The manuscript is clearly in the handwriting of Robert Burns. The ink and paper are a good match to other authentic Burns manuscript productions. 

“The poem dates from 1785 – 1786. The first publication to give an indication of its origins, and how it came to be in the collection of Paisley Library is ‘The Works of Robert Burns Volumes 1 – 5’ edited by The Ettrick Shepherd and William Motherwell. Motherwell was Secretary of the Paisley Burns Club in 1819 and became President in 1821. This puts him at the centre of Paisley literary life when the poem first surfaces. Motherwell noted that, ‘We are informed it was presented to the library by the late Mr. John Clarkson, of McGavin and Clarkson, threadmakers, Paisley’.”

The manuscript will be displayed alongside a portrait of Burns by James Tannock (1784 – 1862) also in Paisley Museum’s collection. Born in Kilmarnock, Tannock was originally a house painter, but after lessons from Alexander Nasmyth – who was a friend of Burns – became a successful portrait painter.


The manuscript reads:


Yours this moment I unseal,

And faith I’m gay and hearty!

To tell the truth and shame the deil,

I am as fou as Bartie:

But Foorsday, sir, my promise leal,

Expect me o’ your partie,

If on a beastie I can speel

Or hurl in a cartie.


Robert Burns



Monday Night, 10 o’clock

For more information on Paisley Museum visit www.renfrewshireleisure.com

Your future starts this New Year at West College Scotland. Apply now for our January start courses in Business, Construction, Care, Engineering, Hospitality, Beauty, Music, Science and more.  For more information visit here or call 0300 600 6060


It has been another energetic year for RAMH during which they have provided services for almost 5,000 people experiencing mental ill health; empowering people to move independently towards recovery. RAMH also received the highest grading of “excellent” by the Care Inspectorate for their housing support services, plus the Silver Investors In People award.


RAMH works hard to deliver the very highest quality services on the tightest of budgets. That’s not always easy. Would you consider supporting RAMH with a gift of £2 per month during 2017, to help us maintain and develop services? You will be making support even more accessible, and more available, to more people.

One of our service users recently said “the RAMH singing group has brought me out of myself now, it’s given me back my confidence. Self management has been rediscovering myself in a way. It’s made me believe in myself again; without RAMH I wouldn’t be here today.”

For every £1 you donate, over 80p goes directly towards supporting local people with conditions such as depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, self harm and others. RAMH promises not to share your information with any other organisations, nor to raise money through telephone fundraising or street fundraising. To set up your donation visit https://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/fundraiser-web/donate/makeDonationForCharityDisplay.action?charityId=1010168&frequencyType=M

or go to www.virginmoneygiving.com, search for RAMH and set up a monthly donation by clicking on the right hand side under Support Us.

If you can, please help RAMH by donating a small amount every month during 2017. If you prefer to make a single donation use the links above and select “single” on the drop down list. Your generosity will make a lasting impact in the lives of individuals.

THANK YOU for your kind and committed support!  www.ramh.org

Core 2 Computing would like to wish all our customers a very Merry Christmas and thank you all for your support this year and look forward to being of service to you in 2017.


ESKIMOS have been on the lookout for a giant igloo from the kids’ Christmas experience in Soar at intu Braehead.

ntu Braehead security supervisor, Gareth Gillies and nine-year-old Lauren Smith, from Renfrew – looking for a giant igloo outside Soar

intu Braehead security supervisor, Gareth Gillies and nine-year-old Lauren Smith, from Renfrew – looking for a giant igloo outside Soar

They looked as if they’d travelled all the way from the Arctic, so they could be the first to go on the journey through the Enchanted Winter Forest.

But the Eskimos will have to wait until Thursday, December 1 for the amazing free attraction to open at the popular leisure destination.

The trip through the Enchanted Winter Forest features an animatronic display, a sleigh for photo opportunities, the chance to take a photograph of yourself as a Christmas Braelien and the giant igloo with children’s movies being shown inside.

Marketing manager for intu Braehead, Christine Macdonald said: “Snow way, I thought Eskimos would turn up at Soar for the free Enchanted Winter Forest attraction!

“But I’m not surprised they wanted to be first in the queue as it’s a wonderful experience for kids and they won’t have seen anything like this before at intu Braehead.
“They certainly won’t forget their journey through the free Enchanted Winter Forest in a hurry.”

The Enchanted Winter Forest is just one of a host of Christmas attractions that will make great family entertainment at Soar. There’s a free screening of Ice Age: Collison Course at the ODEON cinema, on Saturday, December 3.
And in the run-up to Christmas there are visits to Soar by some of your children’s favourite characters.

Sid, the loveable sloth from Ice Age, will be making a personal appearance at the Enchanted Winter Forest, on December 3. The following Saturday, December 10, Postman Pat and his black and white cat, Jess will be at Soar to meet youngsters.

Then, there’s the pawsome news that Marshall from PAW Patrol will be at Soar on Saturday, December 17 and Sunday, December 18 and on Thursday, December 29 and Friday, December 30 The Gruffalo also pays a visit.
All character appearances are at noon, 1pm, 2pm, 3pm and 4pm.

And don’t forget every Saturday, between noon and 4pm. the intu Braehead Festive Kids’ Club offers hours of free festive fun at Soar with face painting and Christmas craft activities.

Log on to www.soar.intu.co.uk for more information and how to book any of these free events.