special Announcements

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Confirmation that the UK’s largest leather manufacturer will open a new facility in Renfrewshire is being hailed as ‘the first step’ in ambitious growth plans to add more than 9000 jobs to the local economy by 2030.

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Scottish Leather Group employ more than 800 people at its Bridge of Weir, Paisley and Glasgow sites and today announced they are opening a new Paisley hub by autumn 2020, creating 100 skilled jobs to provide high-end car seat upholstery.

This comes as Renfrewshire business leaders set out the strategy to grow the local economy and seize on £1.4billion being invested in infrastructure, innovation and skills across the region.

Welcoming the new jobs, Derek Mackay, Scottish Government Cabinet Secretary for Finance, Economy and Fair Work said: “Scotland is an attractive place to do business with a skilled workforce and companies like Scottish Leather Group expanding their operations is testament to this.

“Our Programme for Government sets out ambitious commitments in areas such as trade, manufacturing, skills and innovation which will also help to boost productivity growth across Scotland. Our Economic Action Plan will also be relaunched later this year to reinforce this work and will be the central point for both businesses and individuals across Scotland to access the information demonstrating the work that is being done by this Government to drive sustainable and inclusive economic growth.

“I welcome the publication of Renfrewshire’s Economic Strategy which will help develop the local economy further.”

Together with the jobs pledge, the strategy aims to increase GVA by £400million a year and expand Renfrewshire’s manufacturing sector by 30%.

Plans are also in place to grow the working age population by 5000 people and reduce economic inactivity by 15%, bringing 3000 local people into the workforce, while Renfrewshire businesses will benefit from targeted actions to reduce skills gaps and shortages.

Scottish Leather Group Director James Lang chairs Renfrewshire’s Economic Leadership Panel, which led development of the ambitious economic strategy.

He said: “Renfrewshire offers the perfect environment for businesses to flourish and as a locally-based business we can trace our Renfrewshire roots as far back as the 18th century. We are delighted to be expanding our Renfrewshire operation further with this important new facility in Paisley, which will create new jobs and enable us to deliver on our expanding portfolio.

“These jobs are an important first step in our ambitions for Renfrewshire. We are at an exciting time with major economic investment taking place right across Renfrewshire, a region which has strong foundations upon which to build, with a high employment rate and businesses exporting £2billion of goods and services worldwide.

“Renfrewshire’s Economic Strategy sets out how we will seize upon the opportunities brought by this new investment and achieve inclusive economic growth. It is the culmination of close partnership working between the private and public sector and achieving its ambitious aims will require our continued collaboration, drive and passion.”

The strategy identifies key sectors of strength in manufacturing, construction, transport and storage, together with emerging sectors in creative industries, tourism and care.

It acknowledges the importance of the work now started on construction of the Advanced Manufacturing Innovation District Scotland (AMIDS) – a partnership project with Scottish Government and Scottish Enterprise to develop a 52-hectare site next to Glasgow Airport into a base for manufacturing companies to harness new technologies and access cutting-edge research.

The first opening road bridge over the River Clyde at Renfrew, funded through the Glasgow City Region City Deal, will enhance connectivity and transform the Clyde waterfront.

Major investment is being made in Paisley’s venues and outdoor spaces, including the transformation of Paisley Museum, as part of plans to attract more tourists and visitors to the region.

And the strategy cites the critical importance of the house building programme, with 5000 homes being built in Renfrewshire over the next 10-years, including at Dargavel Village, one of the UK’s largest privately-funded brownfield regeneration projects.

Renfrewshire Council Leader Iain Nicolson said: “Renfrewshire is a place of culture, creativity and design, a region that is globally connected and a place that is investing in its economy.

“I am confident we will deliver a thriving Renfrewshire and we are already making great progress. Guided by this strategy and through the private and public sector working together, we will achieve a strong and inclusive economy, bringing more people into work with more secure earnings and greater earning power.

“We will bring education and skills provision closer to the needs of the local economy and we will improve our economic infrastructure, with better public transport and new digital connectivity. We will grow our working age population by retaining and attracting more people to live, learn and work here and we will grow our tourism and visitor numbers as we make Renfrewshire a destination of choice.”


Renfrewshire’s Economic Strategy 2020-2030

The strategy sets out our ambitions and actions to achieve sustainable, inclusive growth of the Renfrewshire economy over the next 10 years. Its development has been led by Renfrewshire’s Economic Leadership Panel, which draws together leaders from across the private and public sector, enterprise agencies and education and skills experts.

The strategy has six ambitious aims:

  • Add more than 9000 jobs to the economy
  • Add an additional £400million GVA per annum
  • Grow the working-age population by 5000 people
  • Reduce economic inactivity by 15% bringing 3000 local people into the workforce
  • Reduce by 60% the businesses reporting skills gaps and shortages impacting on performance
  • Grow Renfrewshire manufacturing GVA by 30%

It also sets out eight economic challenges and a series of actions to address these, including development of a Renfrewshire Skills Plan and an agreed Renfrewshire Inclusive Growth approach.

Renfrewshire’s Economic Leadership Panel will now support the development of a detailed action plan, with sectoral groups focusing on manufacturing, creative industries, tourism, care, transport and infrastructure.

The panel will monitor progress against the strategy ambitions, considering any changes as the context and circumstances for economic growth change.

ModStuff is always a Spree festival favourite – and this year’s event is now the latest sell-out show on this year’s bill.

The celebration of all things Mod – run by LNP Promotions – returns to The Spiegeltent on Saturday 12 October, and the last tickets for the evening show have now been snapped up.

But if you missed out you can still take in the ModSuff afternoon show – it’s free, no ticket is needed, loads of bands are playing, and includes the spectacle of the annual scooter rideout. Both shows are being run in support of Renfrewshire Carers Centre.

Gary Kerr of LNP Promotions said: “ModStuff has been a big part of The Spree for a few years now and the event has grown in popularity with the festival as a a whole. We are delighted to once again take over the Spiegeltent on the first Saturday of the festival in aid of a great cause.

“We are thrilled to be bringing some incredible bands to Paisley for you to enjoy… we look forward to seeing you all there!”

Spree tickets have been flying out the door this year with ModStuff one of several sell-outs. All tickets are gone for the Gerry Rafferty Songbook, Hue and Cry and Jerry Sadowitz, while The Snuts sold out The Spiegeltent within hours of going on sale in July.

But if you hurry there’s still time to get tickets for other acts including Glasvegas, Gruff Rhys, PP Arnold, Karine Polwart, Hayseed Dixie and our late-night comedy nights on Friday 11th and Friday 18th.

For the first time, this year’s Paisley Halloween Festival will feature a spooky silent disco where party-goers can show off their best Monster Mash and Thriller dance moves.

Part of the award-winning annual festival, taking place on Friday 25 and Saturday 26 October, the open-air silent disco, delivered by Silent Knights, is a family-friendly activity promising plenty of dancing, DJs, singing and a whole lot of Halloween fun.

Taking place in the heart of the town in Dunn Square, there will be a series of 40-minute sessions for families and festival-goers to head along to over the two-day event. They will be provided with wireless headphones and can select their tunes of choice.

There will also be two relaxed disco slots suitable for those with additional support needs and their families and carers. During these time slots the music will be turned down in the headphones and there will be more room to dance around. These sessions will take place on Friday from 5pm to 5.40pm and Saturday 2pm to 2.40pm. A walk-in Sensory Safe Space will also be available in the POP store in the Piazza Shopping Centre during the festival. This will be a relaxed space specially created for individuals with additional support needs and their carers.

Event DJs will be spinning tracks over three channels from Halloween hits to classic Ibiza dance anthems and pro-dancers will be on hand with classic dance moves that will keep everyone moving all day long.

The festival is being delivered in partnership with acclaimed outdoor theatre specialists, Cirque Bijou. There will be plenty of opportunities for people to join in the fun with a huge range of Halloween-themed activities including the dark circus style Halloween parade, aerial performances, workshops, street theatre and musical performances, scary movie screenings, live stage acts, creepy installations and a Halloween Fun Fair.

Louisa Mahon, Head of Marketing, Communications and Events at Renfrewshire Council, said: “The popular Paisley Halloween Festival is one of the most highly anticipated events in Renfrewshire’s annual calendar. Every year it gets bigger and bolder and this year is no exception.

“The Silent Disco is sure to be another exciting addition to the creative programme, drawing festival-goers right into the heart of Paisley town centre and offering a fantastic, fun, family experience.

“The support of partners like EventScotland has helped us grow our ambitious major events programme and establish the town as one of Scotland’s key cultural destinations in recent years. We look forward to continuing to deliver top class events in Renfrewshire in the future.”

The Paisley Halloween Festival, which was supported in 2018 through the Year of Young People event fund, was awarded £16,950 of National Programme funding from EventScotland part of VisitScotland’s Events Directorate for this year’s event.

The Silent Disco is accessible for all abilities and is recommended for ages 4 and over but all ages are welcome. Under 2s do not require a ticket but cannot be provided with headphones.

Tickets are on sale now and cost £5 for adults and £3 for kids (under 14 years old). A family ticket (two adults and two kids) is available for £14. Prices include booking fees.

To book tickets for the Paisley Halloween Festival Silent Disco please visit: www.paisley.is/discover/silentdisco/.  To find out more about the event please visit www.paisley.is/halloween.

Mirren Business Centres – Offices To Let
Mirren Court, 119 – 123 Renfrew Road, Paisley


Top floor loft-style office – 343 sqft available to let at Mirren Court Three, 123 Renfrew Road, Paisley.

The office has roof lights and Velux windows. It has lots of natural daylight and could be great studio space.

Please see our video below:

Call on 0141 843 4211 to get additional details!

A leading cancer charity is urging people in Renfrewshire to raise millions of pounds for cancer services – by taking part in the World’s Biggest Coffee Morning.

Macmillan Cancer Support wants people across the county to take part in the event to help raise millions of pounds to fund local cancer services.

In 2018, Renfrewshire raised a fantastic £78,000 in total with a variety of fantastic Coffee Morning’s happening across the county.

But this year the charity is hoping even more people will get involved to raise even more to help fund local cancer services such as the Macmillan Library Information & Support Services, Macmillan Move More Classes and the 5 Macmillan Cancer Nurse Specialists based at the Royal Alexandra Hospital.

Macmillan’s fundraising manager for Renfrewshire Julia Perrie, said: “Macmillan is there to help from the moment someone is diagnosed with cancer and the support we provide is vital.

“From the nurses we fund within the NHS, to the benefits advisors we fund in local communities, we want to be there for everyone who needs us.

“It’s only thanks to the incredible generosity of people taking part in events like the World’s Biggest Coffee Morning that we’re able to be there for people at the toughest time of their life.

“The people of Renfrewshire have always got behind the event and we hope to see even more of them taking part this year.”

The official date of the World’s Biggest Coffee Morning is Friday, September 27, but people can sign up and host their own coffee morning whenever suits them.

“We’re taking part in the World’s Biggest Coffee Morning as every day we see how cancer impact people’s lives.

“It doesn’t just affect people physically. It can affect every aspect of their lives. We want to make sure we can continue to be here for people who need us. Enjoying a coffee and a cake with the community is also a great way to let people know we’re there for them.”

To get a free fundraising pack visit https://coffeeregister.macmillan.org.uk/ or call 0330 102 7810.

To get support from Macmillan visit www.macmillan.org.uk or call the support line on 0808 808 0000.

Award winning theatre maker Andy Manley returns with hit show for young children – Stick by Me – At Johnstone Town Hall on Thursday 26 September.

“Completely delightful. Children’s shows of this calibre are rare”

Audience member

Andy Manley’s performance for young audiences, Stick by Me, is a quirky, non-verbal show about friendship and play, and the importance of treasuring little things. The show, created for children aged 3-6 years, and winner of the 2019 CATS Awards for Best Production for Children and Young People will be touring to Johnstone Town Hall.

Created by the duo behind the critically acclaimed play, White, Andy Manley and Ian Cameron’s new performance, Stick by Me, builds on their vast experience of creating work for very young children.

Alice McGrath, Creative Director at Red Bridge Arts said: “Stick by Me is a real celebration of friendship and children’s play. The creators, Andy and Ian, are experts in connecting with children’s humour and interests and presenting life back to them in an entertaining and thoughtful way. Hearing children and families responses after the show is always heartening and at the end the children are gifted their own Stick friend which brings a huge amount of joy to all”

Stick by Me was originally commissioned in 2017 by Gulbenkian Arts Centre for the Boing Festival, it then played the Edinburgh Fringe as part of the Made in Scotland showcase where it was a great hit with audiences and press. The show has been nominated for the 2019 CATS Award for Best Production for Children and Young People and has received rave reviews from audiences:

“Stick by Me is a charming and witty dance piece for all ages from Red Bridge Arts, commissioned by ACE and supported by The Gulbenkian, and is brilliantly performed by Andy Manley. Everybody in the audience, young and old, left Dancebase with a smile on their face – and a lolly stick.”

Darren Henley CEO, Arts Council England

“Absolutely loved this and so did my 3-year-old. It’s beautifully crafted with great attention to the little details that make the difference between an okay show and something that’s a bit special.”

Audience member

Stick by Me co-creator and director Ian Cameron has worked with and developed Andy’s physical performance and approach to non-verbal storytelling. Set design by Katherina Radeva supports the exploration of material and creation of an abstract world for the story to take place. Music and sound design by Will Calderbank and lighting design by Craig Fleming underpin the performance and bring a full, sensory world for audiences young and old to immerse themselves in.

Call 0300 300 1210 or visit www.renfrewshireleisure.com/whats-on to book for Thursday 26 September at 2pm at Johnstone Town Hall.

“The Diane Mitchell Music School offers one to one lessons in Singing, Guitar, Piano, Ukulele and more for people of any age or level. 

There are a variety of classes for children such as Theory, Musicianship, Piano, Violin and Kodaly in the music schools two locations – Paisley and Barrhead. 

With new classes starting in our Barrhead venue on Saturday the 21st of September such as Violin tots, Maestros and Musical Tots. Learning music in a fun, Interactive way.

If interested visit us on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/dianemitchellmusicschool/ 

Email: info@dianemitchellmusicschool.com or call us on 07896689816″ 

An exciting new film festival is coming to Paisley this year, organised by award-winning independent filmmaker and former Paisley Grammar pupil Gary Hewitt.

The HB Film Festival will be held at The Wynd Centre on the 19th & 20th October, with a packed programme of short and feature films, live entertainment and a charity film quiz in aid of Medicinema at the Royal Hospital for Children. 

The event aims to bring independent film to the local community, showcasing films by Scottish, UK and international filmmakers from genres including comedy, animation and horror. In addition to a variety of film screenings, the festival will also feature live comedy from local comedian Chris Thorburn and music from Paisley singer Lisa Kowalski.

Festival director Gary said:

“I started my filmmaking career in Paisley, so I am absolutely delighted to be holding this event in Paisley, particularly when there aren’t many cinema options available in the town. The HB Film Festival is a wonderful opportunity to see some fantastic films from across the world – we’ve got something to suit all tastes, so come along and join us for what is sure to be a fantastic event for movie lovers and filmmakers alike!”

The two-day event culminates in an awards ceremony with 17 awards up for grabs for filmmakers, and a judging panel that includes Rab C Nesbitt writer Ian Pattison and Outlander actor Scott Kyle. 

You can grab a weekend pass for just £15, and tickets for individual screenings start at just £2.50 – get your tickets now on Eventbrite

To stay up to date on HB Film Festival news, follow us on social media:


Twitter: @TheHBFilmFest

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TheHBFilmFest/

Wedding Fayre – Free Entry

Sunday 22nd September 12-4pm

Brought to you by Wedding Services Scotland, over 35 local wedding suppliers offering everything you need for your big day from wedding stationery to vintage wedding cars. Enjoy a fashion show, bridal catwalk and live music to entertain you.

Wedding Open Evening –Free Entry

Monday 23rd September 6-9pm

A great opportunity to see this beautiful, iconic venue fully dressed for a grand wedding. Whether you just want a few last-minute touches or you want your venue dressed top to toe, the decorations by Purple Willow Weddings will not fail to delight.


You’ll be ecstatic by your kid’s happiness when they see their favourite Disney characters come to life in front of their eyes, dancing on the floor, twirling in the air, and performing stunts breathtaking enough to take you back to your childhood.


But the amazing extravaganza called ‘Disney On Ice’ has a lot of details you need to know and take care of. If you wish to create a memorable experience for your child rather than playing free spins live casino on your couch, continue reading.


What is Disney On Ice?


Disney On Ice is a series of touring ice shows produced by Feld Entertainments Ice Follies and Holiday on Ice, Inc. under agreement with The Walt Disney Company. The show is primarily aimed at children and portrays figure skaters in the roles of popular Disney characters in performances derived from various Disney films. 


A new show is launched every year and is hosted by Mickey Mouse, sometimes assisted by Minnie Mouse, Donald Duck, Goofy, and Buzz Lightyear.


Tips for the best ‘Disney On Ice’ experience


  1. Pick the best show


Disney On Ice has multiple shows on different days, so make sure to pick the one that’s best for you. Here’s a summary of each of the shows:


  • Disney On Ice presents Dream Big – Everything from Disney princesses and princes to villains and the 7 dwarves. This show is for people who like the royal side of the Disney universe.


  • Disney On Ice presents Reach For The Stars – A truly star-studded show featuring only the biggest stars like Mickey, Minnie, Donald, Goofy, Anna, Elsa, and many other Disney princesses.


  • Disney On Ice presents Dare To Dream – Your favourite Disney princesses including the latest ones like Moana.


  • Disney On Ice presents Follow Your Heart – Classic Disney princesses are accompanied by iconic Pixar characters from Nemo, Inside Out, and Toy Story.


  • Disney On Ice presents Frozen – Prepare to let it go with the phenomenal Frozen characters.


  1. Dress smart


The ‘Disney On Ice’ website specifies that the temperature in the arena is usually 10+ degrees cooler than outside. Though the inside of the arena is surprisingly comfortable, it does depend on your affinity to cold. So it’s advisable to be prepared and don some extra layers both on yourselves and your kids.


  1. Break Time


Disney On Ice shows usually run from 90 minutes to two hours long, and you only get a 15-20 minute intermission halfway through them. The show is captivating, but kids may get restive from time to time. Spot out the restrooms beforehand and take breaks as needed. The restrooms may have a long line during the intermission, so be prepared for it.


  1. Make it Magical


The festive magic from Disney’s amusements parks carries over to their Ice shows, so don’t hesitate to get creative with your kids’ fashion. Dress them up in Disney Princess gowns and Toy Story costumes, but make sure to add some layers on top to keep away the cold.


  1. Sit Down


Usually, the stadiums where Disney On Ice shows are held are huge, and that presents the problem of where to sit. The best seats come at a higher price but are worth it if the front row is important to you. However, the view and experience will definitely be wonderful wherever you sit.