victoria

Victoria Hamilton, from Kilmacolm, is running the Loch Ness Marathon in memory of her dad because she is “determined” to raise £10,000 for St. Vincent’s Hospice to thank them for their care and support.

victoria

After being diagnosed with terminal bowel cancer Tom Maitland (Victoria’s dad), was admitted to St. Vincent’s Hospice in October 2018 where he spent 27 days in their care, before sadly passing away on the 14th of November.

Victoria said: “Ultimately, I am running this marathon for St. Vincent’s Hospice because I can. I have legs that work and have seen first-hand what happens when cancer robs someone of their physical strength. I feel I owe them for the compassion, professionalism, kindness and expertise they showed my beloved dad and our entire family for the 27 days he was in their care, until he lost his battle with cancer.

“The days and weeks leading up to Dad’s admission were dark. His illness had taken grip and spread to his brain. Every day he seemed to deteriorate further. We were close to breaking point, and simply didn’t know where else to turn.

“From the moment he was admitted to St. Vincent’s, we felt rescued. I had always naively thought a hospice was a place you went to die; but now I know that a hospice is a place you go to live. Where you need not suffer any pain. A place where emotional support is available around the clock for the family and a patient’s last breath is made as dignified and as comfortable as possible.”

St. Vincent’s Hospice is a specialist provider of palliative and Hospice care for people and families affected by life-limiting conditions all across Renfrewshire. They provide this in a number of ways, from comprehensive care in their Inpatient Unit, to support with wellness and symptom control in their Day Services, and even within the comfort of people’s own homes throughout the community.

Each year, it costs nearly £2.5 million to provide these services, more than half of which is generated through voluntary donations and fundraising.

Victoria added: “For the 27 days my dad was under their care, I estimate that it would have taken approximately £10,000 of charity funding to provide his care alone. It is my mission to repay these costs as a small gesture for my family’s gratitude for being our salvation when we needed it most.”

The Loch Ness Marathon takes place on the 6th of October 2019. To support Victoria and help her reach this incredible target, visit: https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/victoria-hamilton7

Scottish Power Win BPBC MFG

Thousands of the world’s top pipers and drummers will again descend on Paisley for one of the biggest dates in the global piping calendar.

 

The British Pipe Band Championships will take place on Saturday 18 May at the St James Playing Fields – with 123 bands from across the UK and Ireland, and drum and pipe majors from as far afield as the USA, Denmark and Belgium set to compete.

The free-to-attend event will see a full day of family entertainment from 10am to 6pm – including a Highland Games competition, a food village, and sporty activity.

Scottish Power Win BPBC MFG

This will be the fourth year the championships have been in Paisley, with the town contracted to continue to host the event – one of piping’s five ‘majors’ and second-only in size to the World Championships – until 2021.

Last year’s event attracted 17,000 attendees and generated more than £300,000 for the local economy, with half the attendees visitors to Renfrewshire and 7% from outwith Scotland.

Event organisers Renfrewshire Council and the Royal Scottish Pipe Band Association have also teamed up with McGill’s Buses to transport spectators to and from the event – free of charge.

There will be plenty local interest on the day – the Johnstone Pipe Band will have two entries, one going head to head with the world’s best in the prestigious Grade 1 competition, and another looking to win Grade 3a (having topped Grade 3b last year).

Kilbarchan Pipe Band will feature in the Grade 4b contest, while the Renfrewshire Schools Pipe Band will be hoping to equal or better last year’s brilliant performance, when they came third in Novice Junior Grade B in their first major championships.

Ian Embelton, chief executive of the Royal Scottish Pipe Band Association, said: “We are delighted to be partnering with Paisley to bring the British Championships to the town once again.

“Paisley is a popular venue with the bands for its central location, transport links and the many excellent options available locally to stay overnight and to enjoy a meal or a drink.

“This is the first of the annual majors and many of the world’s best pipe bands will be competing – for anyone who hasn’t been before, my message would be come along on the day and enjoy some top-class piping and drumming.”

McGill’s will run the shuttle buses from Paisley Gilmour Street station, West College Scotland and Swift Parking on Greenhill Road, with the latter two offering free event parking. Visitors should note there will be no public parking at the event.

Other transport options include getting the train to Paisley St James station, which is a short walk from the event site, or a McGill’s bus to Paisley town centre, and transferring to the free shuttle.

Renfrewshire Council Leader Iain Nicolson said: “Hosting major events like this is helps to build on Paisley and Renfrewshire’s now-established reputation as a key destination on Scotland’s events map.

“Renfrewshire has many businesses who will be ready to welcome the thousands of visitors with open arms and I hope as many of them as possible of will enjoy a day, and evening or an overnight stay with us.”

Other major events coming up in Paisley over the next few weeks include the Paisley Food and Drink Festival – expected to draw thousands to the town centre on Friday 26 and Saturday 27 April.

More information about the British Pipe Band Championships and other Renfrewshire events is available online at www.paisley.is.

Cllr Marie McGurk, Oran Kearney, Gordon Scott and Street Stuff participants

Street Stuff celebrated the start of its 10-year anniversary in style with more than 1200 young people took part in the free Spring Break programme.

Hundreds of young people flocked to activities every day of the two-week holiday camp, as football, gaming and more was made available at venues across Renfrewshire.

Cllr Marie McGurk, Oran Kearney, Gordon Scott and Street Stuff participants

A free healthy meal was provided to all participants at the afternoon activities, meaning 675 young people were refuelled throughout the duration of the programme.

Stevie Gallacher, Street Stuff Manager, said: “We’re delighted to see more and more young people spending their school holidays with us.

“Our holiday programmes are so important as they provide an opportunity for young people from all walks of life to take part in sport and exercise while they don’t have school as an outlet.

“To see so many young people leave with a smile on their face is brilliant and we have our fantastic coaches and volunteers to thank for making it so enjoyable.”

The spring programme marked the start of Street Stuff’s 10th anniversary celebrations which will be marked with a series of events throughout the year.

Councillor Marie McGurk, Convener of Renfrewshire Council’s Communities, Housing and Planning Policy Board, said: “What a fantastic start to Street Stuff’s tenth anniversary celebrations and to see more than 1200 young people taking part is a great achievement.

“By providing the programme for free, we are giving all young people the opportunity to take part in sport and exercise and this can be vital in keeping them on the right track in life.

“The programme has changed so many lives over the past ten years and we’re proud of the work carried out by our staff, coaches and volunteers to provide these opportunities for young people.”

Street Stuff is a diversionary project run in partnership between Renfrewshire Council, Police Scotland, Scottish Fire and Rescue Service, Engage Renfrewshire and St Mirren Football Club.

The programme began in 2009 in Renfrewshire and has contributed to a sustained reduction of 65 percent.in youth disorder and anti-social behaviour.

The programme runs six days a week, all-year-round, at venues across Renfrewshire and young people aged 8 to 16 are encouraged to turn up and take part for free.

For more information, visit www.renfrewshire.gov.uk/streetstuff or follow @SMFCStreetStuff on Facebook and Twitter.

Wright Street

Renfrew was the latest area to benefit from a Big Spring Clean as volunteers headed out over the weekend on community clean-ups.

More than thirty volunteers turned out to two litter picks in Renfrew as inspired teams tackled the banks of the Clyde from Wright Street as well as the Blythswood Woods.

Blythswood

Crisp packs, bottles, a shoe and even some skateboard wheels were collected as the volunteers filled their bags and made the local area a little brighter.

The Big Spring Clean is one of the flagship events of the Team Up to Clean Up campaign which aims to make Renfrewshire a cleaner, more attractive place to live, work and visit and is running throughout April, with more than 50 litter picks arranged so far.

Neil Paterson, Renfrew to Paisley People and Nature Corridor, said: “Clean up activities are key towards re-naturing the old railway and path and making it more pleasant for people and wildlife.

“Doing this through organised events is a great way to enable community involvement and for like-minded folk to meet and enjoy each other’s company.

“The Big Spring Clean is a good way for the council to promote and encourage people to get involved in improving  the environment throughout Renfrewshire.”

Councillor Cathy McEwan, Convener of Renfrewshire Council’s Infrastructure, Land and Environment Policy Board, hosted the clean-up in Blythswood and was delighted with the support of the local community.

Councillor McEwan said: “It’s brilliant to see everyone coming together to make a difference to their own local area and I was delighted to join my neighbours on a litter pick at the weekend, where we even had volunteers from Elderslie make the trip across to join us.

“If we all take the time to make our neighbourhoods cleaner then the whole of Renfrewshire will benefit and that’s what Team Up to Clean Up is all about.

Wright Street

“We’ve made a significant investment as a council to ensure we can increase the level of work we do ‘behind the scenes’ as we recognise that we need to work with the local community to ensure the campaign is a success.

“We’ve seen amazing things happen so far with the support for the Big Spring Clean surpassing all our expectations.”

The Team Up to Clean Up campaign has benefited from a £2.5million investment in Renfrewshire’s local environment which has seen an increased programme of road sweeping, drain clearing, litter picking and an enhanced Rapid Response Team.

The investment has also facilitated local communities to undertake litter picks by providing them with gloves, litter pickers, bags and hoops, as well as the support of the council’s Wardens Service and StreetScene team who remove all rubbish following the completion of the litter pick.

For more information visit www.renfrewshire.gov.uk/BigSpringClean2019 or call 0300 300 1375.

sports awards

SCORES of secondary pupils have shown they are real good sports after graduating from the Renfrewshire School of Sport Education.

Paisley Abbey was packed with families and friends for the graduation ceremony and the presentation of certificates to 70 students by Renfrewshire Provost Lorraine Cameron.

sports awards

The School of Sport Education Initiative run by Renfrewshire Leisure and gives students over the age of 16 training for leisure and sports coaching awards and qualifications that could help them find work when they leave school, college or university.

Each pupil taking part has completed 20 weekly after-school sessions, child protection training and a placement to gain volunteering experience by coaching and delivering 60 hours of sports activities to younger children.

 Chairperson of Renfrewshire Leisure, Councillor Lisa-Marie Hughes said: “We’re very proud of what the young people in this year’s intake have achieved.

audience

“It’s not just how they have developed their own skills and expertise, but what they have done for younger pupils by inspiring them and showing them the benefits of sport in maintaining an active lifestyle.

“The students have become role models and heroes to the children they have coached.

“What the students have learned and experience by taking part in the initiative will stand them in good stead as they make their way into adult life.”

Students from Renfrewshire’s Young Ambassadors programme helped organise the awards event. There were 22 students from local secondary schools who planned and hosted the graduation awards at Paisley Abbey on the night.

The Young Ambassadors – chosen from all 11 secondary schools in Renfrewshire – promote sport in their schools and are involved in various events throughout the year.

NEW ICU ROYAL ALEXANDRA HOSPITAL, PAISLEY.

Seriously ill patients in Paisley will now be cared for in a new state-of-the-art Intensive Care Unit (ICU).

The £5 million unit at the Royal Alexandra Hospital was officially opened today (Friday 12th) by John Brown, Chairman of NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde and was commemorated with a special dedicated plaque.

NEW ICU ROYAL ALEXANDRA HOSPITAL, PAISLEY.

The new unit has nine bed spaces and meets the very highest levels of specification in line with the Scottish Intensive Care Society guidance and clinical standards for intensive care units.

The first patient passed through the doors in February and the unit will provide the highest standards of care for the most critically unwell patients following illness or surgery and who need various types of life and organ support.

John Brown said:  “I was delighted to have been asked to officially open this new Intensive Care Unit.

“I am confident that these new facilities will significantly enhance the quality of care and available for patients, families and staff, both in the immediate future and in the years come.

NEW ICU ROYAL ALEXANDRA HOSPITAL, PAISLEY.

“The unit looks spectacular in design and the air of space, light and calm will be of great comfort to pateitns and families at such an anxious time.”

The old Intensive Care Unit (ICU) opened initially as a High Dependency Unit in 1986 and ten years later evolved into an ICU.

The initial space and design posed limitations to service development over the years and despite the challenges the care and services provided in the old unit were known for excellence in patient and family focused care.

In 2016 the Board supported a £5 million investment to replace the old ICU and work got underway in 2017.  The first patient passed through the doors on the 19th February this year.

st-vincents

8-year-old- Malcolm Tarbert has raised more than £400 for St. Vincent’s Hospice in a very unique way – by wearing shorts every single day since September 2018.

st-vincents

Malcolm, a pupil from Ralston Primary School, decided to support the local charity after they took care of his Grandpa and always made him feel welcome when he came to visit. After seeing a similar idea on television, he took up the challenge and lasted an incredible 181 days through the Scottish winter wearing shorts every day to raise sponsor money.

st-vincents

Malcolm’s Mum, Abigail Tarbert, said: “We are so proud of Malcolm. Honestly, it has been all him! When he first said he was going to wear shorts every day, we just assumed he would lose interest, so we just left it to see if it fizzled out. It didn’t – all through winter and right into spring, he was adamant he was wearing shorts for the Hospice.

“St. Vincent’s looked after his Grandpa towards the end of his life, and we all remember how welcome and comfortable we were made to feel any time we came in to visit him. The place holds a special place in all of our hearts, we already have a tree and a brick on the Woodland Walk in his memory. Malcolm decided he wanted to do something on his own and he’s already trying to think of what else he can do for his next ‘challenge’…I heard something about breaking a world record, but we’ll take it one at a time.”

st-vincents

St. Vincent’s Hospice is a specialist provider of palliative and Hospice care for people and families across Renfrewshire who are affected by life-limiting conditions. This includes bereavement support for relatives, as well as children and young people who have suffered the loss of a loved one.

Fundraiser for St. Vincent’s Hospice, Laura McDade, said: “We are all so impressed by Malcolm and his dedication to raising money for our Hospice. For someone who is just eight to already understand how important the work we do is, and feel connected enough to our services to get sponsors and stick to a challenge for so long is amazing!

“Every year, it costs nearly £2.5 million every year to run our Hospice, and donations like this go directly towards offering real care and support for local people who are going through some very difficult times. On behalf of all of us, thank you Malcolm!”

For more information on how you can support St. Vincent’s Hospice, visit: www.SVH.co.uk. 

Pals of the Privies

Inspiring supporters of the Team Up to Clean Up campaign have been recognised at the Provost’s Community Awards for their work in the community.

The awards set out to reward the unsung heroes within Renfrewshire who go above and beyond for their community and taking home the Community Group and Community Volunteer awards were Pals of the Privies and Heather Clisset respectively.

Pals of the Privies are a volunteer group who set out with the mission of reclaiming Glencoats Park for the community and making it a welcoming area for young and old alike.

Pals of the Privies (1)

They transformed the park from a seldom used green space into a thriving family park, achieving this by embracing the Team Up to Clean Up campaign through improving the appearance of the park and keeping it litter free.

Community events have been held in the park, primary school classes can now take place there and it is a haven for older people and dog walkers, with new benches installed for elderly residents.

Karen Campbell, Pals of the Privies, said: “Pals of the Privies all began with a simple litter pick, never did we think it would have grown to what it is now.

“Team Up to Clean up was a major part of our work from providing equipment to uplifts of large amounts of vegetation and Nicola and all the team have been a godsend, going out of their way to answer our queries or concerns.

“Winning the Provost’s Community Group Award has been a real boost to our group, giving us all some recognition and a sense of appreciation for what we are doing.”

Heather Clissett

Heather Clisset has been carrying out litter picks for more than nine years to keep her area clean and is a big supporter of the Team Up to Clean Up campaign.

She created the Erskine Community Garden which hosts community events and gives a safe place to rest and play, and the garden received the second highest ‘It’s Your Neighbourhood’ award from national environmental charity Keep Scotland Beautiful.

She has worked closely with Keep Scotland Beautiful to carry out pilot projects, including providing dog fouling bags on walking routes to measure the difference in dog mess left behind and has recently become one of the anchor groups for the ‘Upstream Battle’ campaign.

Heather said: “It was truly humbling to be chosen as the Provost’s Community Volunteer Award winner.

“The work the Erskine Community Garden is a full community effort regardless of what we do, whether in the garden or litter picks, we work as a team to make our community better for everyone.

“When Team Up to Clean Up started, this was something we very much wanted to be part of as the idea of joining with like-minded individuals in Renfrewshire meant we could support, encourage and lend practical help to each other.

“The friendships and links we’ve made with other groups are invaluable.”

The Team Up to Clean Up campaign has benefited from a £2.5million investment in Renfrewshire’s local environment which has seen an increased programme of road sweeping, drain clearing, litter picking and an enhanced Rapid Response Team.

The investment has also facilitated local communities to undertake litter picks by providing them with gloves, litter pickers, bags and hoops, as well as the support of the council’s Wardens Service and StreetScene team who remove all rubbish following the completion of the litter pick.

Councillor Cathy McEwan, Depute Provost and Convener of Renfrewshire Council’s Infrastructure, Land and Environment Policy Board, said: “I’m delighted that both Heather and the Pals of the Privies were recognised at the Community Awards this year and they are both fully deserving of the recognition for the fantastic work they have done.

“They are prime examples of what the Team Up to Clean Up campaign is all about as they take pride in the local community and want to make it a brighter place for everyone to live and work in.

“The difference made to Glencoats Park is extraordinary and Heather has had the same impact within Erskine, and it’s great to see the local community reaping the benefits.

“We’re working hard through the campaign to make Renfrewshire a cleaner, nicer place to live, work and visit and thanks to inspiring people like these, we are making a real difference.”

The awards were chosen by a judging panel made up of the Provost, the award sponsors and various elected members from across all political parties.

For more information on the campaign, visit www.renfrewshire.gov.uk/teamuptocleanup or join the dedicated Facebook group www.facebook.com/groups/teamuptocleanup.

erskine

Erskine Veterans will enjoy many day trips this summer in a new seven seater VW Caddy vehicle generously donated to the charity by Paisley company Excel Environmental.
Excel’s Iain Wright and George Mcgregor visited The Erskine Home in Bishopton this week to hand over the vehicle’s keys to the charity’s Chief Executive Ian Cumming and residents Peter Knowles and Lillias Holmes.

erskine

The availability of resident transport has a significant impact upon the quality of life of Erskine Veterans, supporting independence and reducing isolation by facilitating social contact with fellow residents, family, friends, volunteers and staff. Robert Swan, Support Services and Transport Manager at Erskine said: “There won’t be a day goes by when we don’t use this Caddy. It will make an enormous difference to the service we provide to our Veterans. From helping to grant smaller groups of Veterans their Wishes, such as going to the Falkirk Wheel or a day trip to Largs, to more routine trips like hospital and dental appointments. It will also be a great help for transporting Veterans who live at home, to and from our Activity Centre.”

Chief Executive Ian Cumming MBE said: “We are immensely grateful to Iain and his colleagues at Excel Environmental for their extremely generous donation of this wonderful vehicle. Having this new mode of transport will ensure our Veterans continue to maximise and enjoy an active quality of life within the local community.” Excel Environmental is one of Scotland’s leading independent pest management and hygiene companies established in 2000. They service both domestic and
commercial customers. Speaking about the donation Iain Wright said: “All the staff here at Excel are immensely proud to be involved with this donation to Erskine”.