Chief executive: Charity excited to safely welcome back members and customers to venues and facilities as Covd-19 restrictions ease
Renfrewshire Leisure’s gyms, swimming pools, libraries and heritage centre will reopen from Monday, April 26th.
The announcement comes after the Scottish Government today formally confirmed that the region will drop down to Covid-19 level three restrictions from that date.
This means the gyms, leisure centres and swimming pools can reopen for individual exercise, in line with all public health guidelines. Outdoors, all organised activities except adult contact sport can also now take place.
In addition to those facilities available before Christmas, Renfrew Victory Baths will reopen following maintenance work, with extended opening hours in place. Meanwhile, the gym at Johnstone Community Sports Hub will be open outside of school hours. The swimming pool at Johnstone remains closed pending maintenance work.
Gym facilities previously at Park Mains High School will be located at Erskine Sports Centre.
The rule-change also allows for capacity at Renfrewshire Leisure’s popular outdoor fitness classes – which restarted last month while indoor classes are not permitted – can be doubled to 30 people from Monday. That takes the number of weekly slots available to 570.
All 12 of the region’s libraries will reopen too – on a click-and-collect basis for items, with public access to computers also available at each venue.
Members of the public will also again be able to access the heritage centre in Paisley.
Hygiene and social distancing measures will be in place at the venues. All gym and swimming sessions must be pre-booked, as should visits to the heritage centre. Details about opening times and making a booking can be found at www.renfrewshireleisure.com. Bookings for gyms and swimming sessions will open on Wednesday, April 21st.
Monday will be the first time that the venues have been open to the public since lockdown restrictions came into force on December 26th, although online services have been operating throughout.
Victoria Hollows, Chief Executive of Renfrewshire Leisure, said: “We are excited to welcome back our loyal members and residents to our venues. We know how keen people are to return and enjoy more of our services. Our team stands ready to support them as best they can.
“In so many ways, the work we do has never been needed more. Encouraging and supporting better health and wellbeing is going to be vital for people as they recover from the impact of Covid-19 on their lives.
“We are determined to play a key part in our region’s recovery from the pandemic, with the safety of our community and staff the utmost priority.”
The restart of individual exercise sessions at Lagoon Leisure Centre in Paisley and Renfrew Sports Centre will run in tandem with mass vaccinations centres being operated there at the request of Renfrewshire Council. These will have separate entrance and exit points.
Rules for the use of outdoor pitches have been shared with sports clubs.
Staff are also once again manning Barshaw Golf Club. Bowlers, meanwhile, were able to return to Lochfield Bowling Green, Paisley, and Robertson Park Bowling Green in Renfrew from April 1.
Direct debit payment for members – which have been suspended during the disruption to in-person services – will restart from May 7th. Those with annual memberships will have time reimbursed before re-opening.
Regular updates on all services – both in-person and digitally – will be posted via Renfrewshire Leisure’s website and social media.
Voters are being reassured that polling stations will be safe places to cast their vote ahead of the Scottish Parliamentary election on Thursday 6 May.
Polling stations in Renfrewshire have been adapted to ensure that all required health and safety measures are in place to reflect the ongoing Coronavirus pandemic.
Each polling station will have a one-way system in place, two-metre distancing at all times, Perspex screens, hand sanitiser will be available for every voter, disposable pens will be provided, and face coverings will be required to be worn when moving around the polling station – unless the person is exempt.
There will also be a designated cleaner for each polling station and supervisors will be in place to ensure that the safety measures are always followed.
Anyone with symptoms of Coronavirus on polling day should not attend their polling station and should contact the Electoral Registration Officer on 0300 300 0150 as early as possible to discuss their options.
Sandra Black, Returning Officer for Renfrewshire, said: “We recognise that this election is different to all others we will have taken part in and we want to do all we can to ease any reservations that voters may have about polling day.
“Your health and safety has been placed at the forefront of our election planning and the measures we are putting in place will ensure that all our polling stations will be safe places to cast your vote.
“It’s so important that you use your voice and vote in the Scottish Parliamentary election on so please feel confident in visiting our polling stations and have your say in May.”
Polling stations will be open from 7am to 10pm on Thursday 6 May, with the count taking place at Braehead Arena on Friday 7 May and Saturday 8 May.
For more information, visit www.renfrewshire.gov.uk/SPElection2021.
Paisley Food and Drink Festival is taking a different shape for 2021 – with a tantalising online programme across nine days in April!
The festival will take place from Friday 16 – Saturday 24 April and will showcase the rich diversity of Renfrewshire’s food and drink offer.
Enjoy a mouth-watering menu of interactive experiences, including:
- Online cooking demonstrations;
- Virtual tasting sessions;
- Music and cocktail making events;
- Interactive workshops;
- Offers from local businesses with Paisley Eats app;
- and much more!
The festival is also teaming up with culture and lifestyle publication Mill Magazine to produce a series of short films shining a spotlight on local food and drink businesses and the range of cuisine available across the area’s towns and villages.
The ‘Taste of Renfrewshire’ videos will be screened across the nine days alongside the fantastic programme of online experiences for food and drink lovers to enjoy!
Take a look at what’s happening across the nine days with our Events by Date pages below.
Keep an eye on our Facebook Page for more programme announcements in the coming weeks!
Residents of Linwood are being urged to find out if they have Covid-19 when a temporary testing site for people without symptoms of the virus is set up in the area.
The testing site will be open from Wednesday 21 April to Tuesday 27 April and aims to slow the spread of the virus in the area – which has seen higher-than-average rates of Covid-19.
The facility will be in Tweedie Hall and will be run on a drop-in basis – no booking is needed.
It is being targeted at anyone who lives, works or goes to school in Linwood and is only for those who are not displaying any symptoms.
Anyone who does have Covid-19 symptoms (new persistent cough, high temperature, loss of taste/smell) should book a test for an NHS-run centre instead.
The facility will use lateral flow tests – which are quick tests that will be processed on site and see results returned via text message within 45 minutes.
It is being run and staffed by Renfrewshire Council as part of the national rollout of community testing sites.
It follows a successful deployment of temporary Covid-19 test sites in Johnstone, Gallowhill and Ferguslie Park in Paisley.
The testing site will be open from 9am-5pm on Wednesday, Friday, Monday and Tuesday, 11am-3.30pm on Saturday and Sunday, and 11am-7pm on Thursday.
Chris Dalrymple, the council’s chief environmental health officer, said: “Asymptomatic testing is helping us stop the spread of Covid-19 in Renfrewshire.
“Our other temporary asymptomatic testing centres in Johnstone, Gallowhill and Ferguslie helped us find people in these communities who had Covid-19 and were spreading it without knowing it. This testing centre will allow us to do the same in Linwood, helping us to stop the spread of the virus in the community.
“I would encourage anyone who lives, works or goes to school in Linwood to visit our testing centre. Taking a test is the best way to protect your loved ones and your community.”
Anyone who tests positive will be required to self-isolate – along with the rest of their household – for ten days.
Financial support is available – you may be eligible for a Self-Isolation Support Grant and can apply for this through the council.
More information is at www.renfrewshire.gov.uk/coronavirus-testing-centres.
Airport receives British Safety Council’s International Safety Award with a Distinction for second year in a row –
Glasgow Airport has scooped an International Safety Award for protecting its employees from the risk of injury and ill health at work.
The airport has won an International Safety Award with a Distinction from the British Safety Council in recognition of its commitment to keeping its workers and workplaces healthy and safe during the 2020 calendar year.
The airport, owned by AGS Airports Ltd along with Aberdeen and Southampton airports, is one of only 85 organisations worldwide to win a Distinction in the International Safety Awards 2021. The awards also recognise organisations that have shown commitment to wellbeing and mental health.
Graeme Robertson, health and safety manager at Glasgow Airport, said: “The health and safety of our staff continues to be an overarching priority for everyone who works at Glasgow Airport, so we are tremendously proud to have received this award with distinction from the British Safety Council for the second year running.
“It is especially significant to be recognised for our efforts in the year we experienced the onset of COVID-19 – one of the greatest health challenges of our time. Out-with ensuring the safety of our core operational staff who continued to keep the airport open to support vital lifeline services during this pandemic, the greater challenge came from supporting our wider workforce.
“The majority of our people in Glasgow – and across the wider group – have either worked from home due to COVID-19 restrictions or were on furlough for a period of time, so supporting their mental health and well-being while making sure they felt connected with their colleagues during lockdown was absolutely critical last year and this work continues to this day.”
The airport also received the NHS Health Working Lives Gold award in 2020 for ensuring a healthy workplace. Staff at the airport and wider group benefit from an extensive occupational health service from trained advisors or physicians including physiotherapy, podiatry and access to mental-health support with each delivered in keeping with all COVID-19 guidance.
During the pandemic staff have also gained access to an employee assistance programme, online training resources to keep their competency skills up to date and a confidential telephone support service for emotional and practical problems, medical and legal information and immediate crisis intervention. Live broadcast mental health fitness and well-being sessions were also available to staff across the AGS Airports Ltd group.
Mike Robinson, chief executive of the British Safety Council, congratulated Glasgow Airport on their success in winning an International Safety Award 2021 with a Distinction: “The British Safety Council applauds Glasgow Airport and it’s AGS Group-wide Assurance Team on their achievement. The award is in recognition of their commitment and hard work to keep their employees and workplaces free of injury and ill health.
“The vision of the British Safety Council is that no-one should be injured or made ill through their work – anywhere in the world. Achieving this requires more than complying with legislation; it means people committed not only to health and safety but also more and more to workplace wellbeing and impelling others to follow suit.”
“Our heartfelt congratulations to Glasgow Airport. All of those working at the airport should be enormously proud of their achievement.”
Now in their 63rd year, the International Safety Awards recognise and celebrate organisations from around the world which have demonstrated to the satisfaction of the scheme’s independent judges their commitment to preventing workplace injuries and work-related ill-healthduring the previous calendar year.
The awards also recognise organisations that have shown commitment to wellbeing and mental health at work. To find out more about the British Safety Council here.
A PAISLEY cancer survivor is inspiring people to Race for Life at Home and carry on the fight against the disease as the nation looks beyond lockdown.
Laura Elliot, who recently completed treatment for thyroid cancer, is urging people to run, walk or jog 5K for Cancer Research UK.
The Project Co-ordinator will be cheering on thousands of people from across the UK who have vowed to Race for Life at Home this April either alone or in small, socially distanced groups to raise money for life-saving research.
People can visit raceforlife.org to sign up to Race for Life at Home for £5* then receive a Race pack which includes a medal. Money raised will help scientists find new ways to prevent, diagnose and treat cancer, helping to save more lives.
Cancer Research UK is predicting a staggering £300 million drop in income caused by COVID-19 over the next three years which could put future medical breakthroughs at risk.
All 400 mass-participation Race for Life events across the UK were cancelled last year to protect the country’s health during the pandemic. And as the country emerges from lockdown the charity’s much-loved Race for Life events which were scheduled for this spring and early summer have also now been postponed.
But Laura, who has just celebrated her 33rd birthday with her twin sister Chell, knows exactly how vital it is to keep raising funds for life-saving research.
She said: “My reaction to finding out I had cancer was to keep it to myself as much as possible. I didn’t want to burden anyone. But having had major surgery and coming to terms with a cancer diagnosis was hard. I shared more with my mum, who never missed an appointment with me, than anyone else but I kept so many of my feelings to myself.
“In the end it got too much and it was a relief to get some help from the Rays of Hope cancer support group in Elderslie. It was such a relief to talk openly about how I was feeling. Everyone there had experienced a different type of cancer and talking with them helped me come to terms with what had happened.
“I’m certain that the treatment I received saved my life. That’s why I decided to support Cancer Research UK by taking on the charity’s Walk All Over Cancer challenge to walk 10,000 steps every day in March.
“I wanted to do what I could to give something back for the treatment that’s got me through this. I also want to help to make treatments better and kinder, ultimately to find a cure for this awful illness.
“I’d really urge others to support the charity too. Race For Life at Home is a fantastic chance to do something positive this month and raise money to help more people survive.”
Laura first suspected something was amiss with her health when she found she was losing her voice and she noticed her neck was getting bigger. She was gaining weight for no obvious reason and she began to feel tired all the time.
“I was on every diet imaginable but still putting on weight,” recalls Laura, who was aged 31 at the time. “I then started coughing and I didn’t smoke. I worried the cough was to do with my asthma. I had a sore throat and swollen glands.
“I decided to get it checked out and went to the GP three times altogether. On early visits, the doctor did blood tests which came back normal and I was prescribed an antibacterial throat spray and a steriod inhaler to help with my asthma. In the meantime, my neck was getting bigger and bigger.”
Laura eventually went for tests at the ENT department of the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Glasgow. These revealed that Laura’s thyroid was to blame for her symptoms and would need to be removed.
“The thing I worried about most was that after the operation there was a risk I’d need a temporary tracheotomy – a tube in my neck so I could breathe,” Laura said. “The idea made me panic and I wanted to tell the doctors just to leave it. I was scared and nervous because I hadn’t ever had surgery before. But ultimately, I felt glad something was happening to make me better at last. I felt confident in the surgeon, that he was a specialist and that this was the right thing to do.”
Laura was in hospital for three days after the five-hour operation to remove her thyroid.
“The first thing I checked when I woke up was to see if there was a tube in my neck,” she said. “I was so relieved to find out that this hadn’t been needed. But I was shocked by the size of the scar.”
Tests on Laura’s thyroid revealed that various sized cancerous tumours had been growing there and was wrapped around her vocal cords and had spread to the lymph nodes.
She was told the news at a check-up with a consultant in September 2019.
Laura said: “I couldn’t believe it when the consultant told me I had papillary thyroid cancer. I went white and started shaking. I knew what he was saying but couldn’t take it in.”
In October 2019, Laura started radioactive iodine treatment at the Beatson West of Scotland Cancer Centre to destroy any remaining cancer cells and reduce the risk of the cancer returning.
This meant Laura was given an iodine pill and then had to stay in complete isolation in hospital for two days while the radioactive treatment took effect. Even on her return to her home in Paisley, which she shares with her parents, she had to steer clear of everyone in the house for a few days and ensure that she cleaned the bathroom and kitchen after she’d used it. Even her beloved cats Tango and Lennon, who normally sleep in her bedroom, weren’t allowed near.
And while she is recovering well, Laura says her experience has had a significant impact on her mental health.
She said: “I’ve always been a confident person but what I’ve been through has dented that. There has been lasting damage to my voice. I still have trouble speaking and I now speak at a higher pitch, so much so I worry I sound like a little girl. I can’t have a full conversation without my voice going away and I feel it’s such a strain to talk.
“Removing the thyroid has also led to imbalances in my hormones. I’m up and down with them and I find I can be really tearful now.
“Being busy at work has helped to keep my mind off things, as has keeping things going with family life. I love to look after my nine-year-old nephew Caiden and taking on regular exercise has given me a boost. My mum, dad and sister have been there every step of the way and I want to thank them very much.
“I’m just so glad I kept going back to the doctor when things weren’t right. I’m lucky the cancer was caught early and was treatable.”
Cancer Research UK’s Race for Life, in partnership with Tesco, is an inspiring series of 3K, 5K, 10K, Pretty Muddy and Pretty Muddy Kids events which raise millions of pounds every year to help beat cancer by funding crucial research.
A live broadcast on the Cancer Research UK Race for Life Facebook and Race for Life Instagram pages on Saturday April 24th will include an energiser from a fitness expert as well as inspirational messages of support from people who have been through cancer. Participants are then invited to run, walk or jog 5K. Organisers are also inviting participants to share photos and videos on social media using the hashtag #RaceatHome
Every year around 32,400 people are diagnosed with cancer in Scotland** and one in two people in the UK born after 1960 will get cancer in their lifetime.*** But the good news is more people are surviving the disease now than ever before. Cancer survival in the UK has doubled since the early 1970s and Cancer Research UK’s work has been at the heart of that progress.
Linda Summerhayes, Cancer Research UK’s spokesperson in Scotland, said: “The truth is, COVID-19 has slowed us down.
“But we will never stop and we are absolutely determined to continue to create better cancer treatments for tomorrow. Even though we have to Race for Life differently this spring, nothing is going to stop us running, walking or jogging 5K to raise money to help beat cancer.
“That’s why we need as many people as possible across Scotland to sign up to Race for Life at Home this April, to stand united and do something extraordinary to help beat cancer.
“We’re constantly monitoring the COVID-19 situation and are working hard to move our mass participation Race for Life events to the autumn and to make sure they can go ahead safely and with all necessary COVID-19 guidelines in place.****
“We’d love to invite as many people as possible to Race for Life at Home this spring, then physically come together in the autumn to join us for Race for Life Glasgow.”
A new date this autumn has not yet been confirmed for Race for Life Glasgow and an announcement will be made as soon as possible.
Sign up to Race for Life at Home this April and visit raceforlife.org or call 0300 123 0770. Join in and share with #RaceatHome
KALKA was created by Gillian McCormick and is based in Paisley, Scotland.
It is a brand that was born during a time of great uncertainty when a global pandemic forced the world to slow down. Initially, it seemed our freedom had been taken from us, but it soon became apparent that we were now freer than ever! We had been given the chance to change our world and the way we live in it which encouraged a clearer view of what matters. As a new brand, we welcomed the opportunity for growth and new beginnings which is always a source of inspiration for new designs.
Based in Paisley, we take great pride in finding inspiration from our surroundings although our designs are not exclusive to the people of our town. We focus on natural influences and make our products from organic fabrics in order to support a sustainable future for our planet.
It is important to us that our customers receive the highest quality of products and excellent service. We encourage people to get in touch and work with us to create original pieces which you truly love to wear.
You can find us on our website please feel free to browse our products.
CBD has become a difficult topic to discuss due to the confusion over its legality and ingredients. This is in part due to hearing a lot about the relaxation of cannabis laws in the United States on social media, which of course is not a trend the UK is prepared to follow any time soon.
Instead, CBD is extracted from the cannabis plant but contains none of the THC, which is the substance that makes users high. CBD boasts many of the benefits that cannabis does but without the psychoactive element attached. At the start of 2015, CBD was illegal. By the end of 2015, you could buy CBD UK with a click of the button.
As reported recently in the news, Kelly Tweedie from Paisley tells her story about how the brothers behind a CBD startup venture have completely changed her life, ending years of traumatic pain. Kelly has developed SPD, which is a symphysis pubis dysfunction, causing great pain to her hips, back, and legs.
No painkiller was effective enough to take away her pain, but a half dozen drops of CBD had eradicated her suffering entirely. This touches on how CBD became really big, really fast. Stories like Kelly’s spread rapidly, with lots of different illnesses being dramatically improved with the help of CBD.
Besides helping many rare illnesses and chronic pain, it’s also become a way to treat anxiety. This is perhaps the biggest reason why CBD went from obscure medicinal properties to a supplement that can help the everyday person, though the research on anxiety is still premature.
Very quickly, CBD became a trend. If the amount of people taking it seems overwhelming, so is the amount of sellers on the market. Many products have arisen under the umbrella of CBD, such as CBD food, drinks, hair, skincare products, and many more.
Because of its anti-inflammatory qualities, it is commonly used to treat both arthritis and acne, meaning the health and skincare industry is riding this wave in demand. Of course, sellers cannot make direct health claims unless they undergo formal licensing, which is why “wellbeing” is a highly common term used to make the claims vaguer.
It is also thought that CBD can help relieve symptoms from cancer treatments, such as pain, vomiting, and nausea. Whilst there are some studies backing up these claims, research is still in its infancy relative to other supplements and medicinal products, and should always be discussed with a doctor first.
This is why research should be undertaken by customers to see if scientific studies support the claims they’re suggesting, as there are a lot of claims being made.
Is CBD safe?
The ultimate question when researching boils down to “Is it safe?” because if it is, users can always measure their own experience and benefits with the product themselves – placebo or not, it may be worth trying. The World Health Organisation claims that “To date, there is no evidence of public health-related problems associated with the use of pure CBD”.
Ultimately, CBD is a safe product for consumption. Getting a doctor’s advice may be a good idea, particularly when taking other medicine, but generally, there is no reason to conflate CBD oil with the risks of cannabis in i
|Residents of Ferguslie in Paisley have been thanked as the results of a one-week community testing blitz designed to help drive down rates of Covid19 in the area are revealed.|
A drop in testing site was open in St Ninian’s Church Hall for one week from Wednesday 24 March, and anyone without symptoms of the virus who lived or worked in the area were invited to come along.
The site was run and staffed by Renfrewshire Council and the results were as follows:
– 327 people attended the unit, with 2 positive tests (0.6%)
Chris Dalrymple, the council’s chief environmental health officer, said: “Our thanks go out to all residents of Ferguslie Park who came along to get a test.
“It was great to see a good turnout – around 8% of the local population – which compares well to other sites in other areas of the country.
“Not everyone who has Covid19 shows symptoms and the fact the testing identified people who could have been passing it on to those around them without knowing made it worthwhile.
“Thank you again for helping protect your loved ones and your community.”
The test in use was lateral flow tests. These are quick tests that are processed on site and see results returned via text message within 45 minutes.