Paisley and Renfrewshire Newsletter

council PCT partnership

The ongoing drive to regenerate Paisley town centre will be boosted through a new partnership between Renfrewshire Council and the group hoping to bring a new cinema to the town.

Paisley Community Trust (PCT) are taking forward plans for a new cinema on Paisley High Street as part of their wider aim of delivering community-driven economic regeneration of the town.

council PCT partnership

And the trust has now signed a strategic partnership agreement with the council to formalise the commitment of both parties to work together.

A strategic partnership acts as statement of intent, strengthening the links and communication between two groups.

The council has already piloted this approach elsewhere in Renfrewshire, and last week councillors gave approval to sign a similar agreement with Active Communities, who are building a new community hub in the former police station in Johnstone.

The PCT are evolving their plans for a community-focused cinema in the heart of the town centre, and with funding from Renfrewshire Council and Regional Screen Scotland, are shortlisting suitable sites and carrying out initial feasibility studies to explore their potential.

This would be ‘Project One’ to emerge from the Paisley Vision – an ambitious ten-year blueprint recently revealed by the council, Scottish Government and Scotland’s Town Partnership, which imagines some ideas for what Paisley town centre could look like in a decade.

The Vision considers how vacant retail space could be better used to meet what people will need in future – and suggests ideas including new homes for town centre residents and new community and leisure ‘attractors’ such as a cinema or continental-style food hall.

The agreement was signed by Renfrewshire Council’s leader Iain Nicolson and depute leader Jim Paterson, and the PCT’s chair Gary Kerr and deputy chair Andy Campbell.

Cllr Nicolson said: “The council’s job is help make Renfrewshire a place where communities and businesses can thrive – but we recognise we can’t do that on our own.

“That can only happen by working with community groups who share our aims and by supporting them to deliver on theirs, and there are a number of current initiatives intended to strengthen that.

“The council and the PCT share a common goal to help bring new life to Paisley town centre and their plans for a new High Street cinema could complement the work we are already doing to transform Paisley’s future through investment in our historic venues and outdoor spaces.

“This agreement helps formalise that commitment and we look forward to seeing how we can support the trust to deliver on their ambitions.”

Gary Kerr of the PCT added: “Paisley Community Trust have been working with our local communities for a number of years to deliver community-focused leisure-led regeneration projects to the town.

“’Project 1’, the cinema project is a culmination of these years of work and refinement. We were delighted to be part of the Paisley Vision research and to make a strong case for the inclusion of cinema in the long-term plans and we are delighted to see its adoption as a vital component.

“Community-focused cinema has such an important role to play in the town. It can reconnect socially isolated groups such as pensioners. It can provide accessible, autistic-friendly viewing options for children with autism and their parents.

“It can educate and deliver resources to our young people to allow them to tell their own stories on film. Vitally it can provide considerable footfall in the town, delivering an economic boost for our local traders.”

Renfrewshire Council is currently overseeing a once-in-a-generation £100m investment in Paisley town centre, including the transformation of Paisley Museum into a world-class destination and keeping Paisley Town Hall at the heart of local life as a landmark entertainment venue, bringing huge volumes of new visitors to the town.

bookbug bath

WATER lot of fun there was for the babies and toddlers who came along to Renfrewshire Leisure’s first Bookbug in the Bath sessions.

Instead of the usual setting of a local library, there were four popular Bookbug sessions held in a swimming pool.

bookbug bath

Children had a splashing time when Bookbug came to the pools at Paisley’s Lagoon and the Johnstone Sports Hub. And there was even storytelling, nursery rhymes and songs in Gaelic at one of the sessions.

Chairperson of Renfrewshire Leisure, Councillor Lisa-Marie Hughes explained: “We know that children love coming to our usual Bookbug groups and they also like splashing about in the water at our swimming pools.

“So we thought we could combine the two fun activities and it worked very well, as both the children and the grown-ups had a great time.

“We also staged a Gaelic Bookbug in the Bath session, as there’s a growing interest in the language locally and we already have Bookbug in Gaelic in our libraries.”

The Bookbug in the Bath sessions were held to coincide with Paisley Book Festival.

Mill Magazine
Over its short time in existence, Mill has grown to become the preeminent culture and lifestyle magazine for Renfrewshire. A free bimonthly, compact-sized and dynamically constructed publication, the title showcases the best people, artists, businesses, events and developments from across the region.
Mill Magazine
Bustling with engaging content that encompasses music, film, TV, fashion, beauty, travel, food and drink, interiors and property, the magazine represents the increasing vibrancy of the area and acknowledges that just as there isn’t a singular demographic that lives here, our magazine’s content should echo the broad spectrum of people that we encounter every day.
Outside of our core team, Mill also plays host to professional guest contributors who can lend their expertise to an array of pertinent topics.
A publication that prides itself on being For Renfrewshire, By Renfrewshire, on average, 6,000 magazines will reach 18,000 to 24,000 readers and potential customers every issue.
New issue out at the end of February.
Go Kids

Go Kids – The Diane Mitchell Music School

Go Kids
For kids age 7 – 13 years!
Learn ukulele, Sing and make friends. – with Disney songs, Pop, Musical Theatre and more!
paisley pirates

For the second time in a week, Paisley Pirates scored seven times as they recorded a comfortable road win against local rivals North Ayrshire Wild, in a match where the final margin of victory could have been wider, but for controversial decisions by the match night official, who twice disallowed goals by the visitors after originally allowing them to stand.

paisley pirates

Pirates were up and running straight away and went ahead after less than 90 seconds as Thorp finished off a move with Sarginson and Duncan to put his team ahead. The visitors had to survive a number of penalties which left them shorthanded but they did so without conceding and went to the dressing room nursing a narrow 1-0 advantage.

That lead disappeared as the hosts equalised through player/coach Cowan within two minutes of the restart, but inside 60 seconds Pirates’ player/coach Adam Walker had returned the compliment to restore to restore the visitors’ advantage. Pirates continued to have the bulk of the play and two quick fire goals from Duncan late in the period gave the visitors a comfortable looking 4-1 lead going into the final session.

The hosts again came out looking for a quick goal and got it within two minutes as Parkin netted to bring the difference back to two. Pirates responded in style as first Guy and then Henderson netted to take the score to 6-2, before the moments of controversy as Kenneth, who had been the subject of some heavy challenges all evening, had a goal disallowed by referee Stewart after the official had awarded the marker, before protests by the home side persuaded him to reverse his decision, and within minutes a second Pirates’ goal was washed out after a similar scenario.  Wild, encouraged by their vocal successes, then scored two goals in half a minute through Cowan, with his second, then Fowley, to make the score 6-4 when it might have been 8-2, before Spiers scored an empty net goal in the last minute to round off the scoring, and finally extinguish any thoughts of a fightback by the home side. 




Pirates produced one of their worst performances of the season in their final league game to go down 6-5 to a shorthanded Kestrels side whom they had already defeated three times earlier in league and cup games..

The visitors took the lead in six minutes through Scott Jamieson in a period where the home side appeared unable to put in a concerted effort, with passes going astray and players seemingly unable to link with each other, and it was no real surprise when the same player doubled his side’s advantage with three minutes of the session remaining. Pirates briefly got back in the game within a minute through McLaughlin but were again two behind as Cochrane beat Meechan to make it 3-1 at the first break.

It got worse for the home side in the middle session as Jamieson completed his hat trick after 26 minutes and while the hosts continued to struggle they did get a goal back through Harju  just before he halfway point to raise some hopes, and when Walker netted a disputed marker after 34 minutes the team briefly found some of the form which had hitherto escaped them. Andreucci scored the equaliser with 90 seconds of the period remaining, leaving the game poised at 4-4 when all seemed lost only 10 minutes earlier.

However, two quick fire goals by that man Jamieson took his team’s total to six, and his personal tally to five, inside 4 minutes of the restart and while a 5th goal for the home side after 49 minutes from Henderson gave them renewed hope, their form once again left them as the visitors comfortably held on for a deserved win

Pirates will play their last home game of the season in the playoffs on Saturday, 28 March (face off 6.30om) and will be desperately hoping that their good form of only a few weeks previously will return by that date.


Legendary artist and playwright John Byrne is in line to receive his hometown’s highest honour – the Freedom of Renfrewshire.

Provost Lorraine Cameron has submitted a motion, which will be considered at this week’s council meeting, to give the award to one of Paisley’s favourite sons in recognition of his contribution to the area.


Playwright John Byrne revists Paisley Town Hall to back Paisleys 2012 bid for City of Culture.
Mark F Gibson / Gibson Digital
All images © Gibson Digital 2016. Free first use only for editorial in connection with the commissioning client’s press-released story. All other rights are reserved. Use in any other context is expressly prohibited without prior permission.

The Freedom of Renfrewshire is an honorary title and is the highest civic honour that can be bestowed upon an individual or group. It has only been awarded five times previously.

John Byrne was born in Ferguslie Park in Paisley in 1940 and is best known for writing The Slab Boys Trilogy – a set of plays telling the story of young-working class Scots in Paisley and inspired by his own experiences working in Stoddard’s Carpet Factory in Elderslie.

Alongside being an accomplished writer of stage and screen, John Byrne is known for his distinctive painting style and continues to paint and exhibit new work regularly.

John returned to Paisley on Saturday 22 February to celebrate his 80th year as part of the inaugural Paisley Book Festival. The sold-out event in Paisley Arts Centre featured readings from his plays and live music.

He will also bring his new musical play, Underwood Lane, to Paisley Arts Centre from 25-28 June for its world premiere, in partnership with Renfrewshire Leisure and Tron Theatre. The play tells the tale of a young skiffle band trying to make it and is written in memory of John’s Paisley buddy, Gerry Rafferty, who was born and brought up on the street.

Underwood Lane is the last event to be held at Paisley Arts Centre before it closes for refurbishment and is supported by Future Paisley –  a programme of economic, social and physical regeneration building on the work already done to use Paisley’s internationally-significant culture and heritage story to change its future.

Provost Lorraine Cameron said: “John is a celebrated playwriter, painter, printmaker and theatre designer and has put Paisley on the map. He continues to be committed to our local community and is treasured by citizens of Ferguslie Park, past and present, as well as the wider Renfrewshire community and its civic leaders. I’m delighted to offer him this honour and thank him for the contribution he has made to Renfrewshire.”

Opposition party leader, Councillor Eddie Devine, who seconded the motion said: “I’m delighted to second Provost Cameron’s motion to award the Freedom of Renfrewshire to John Byrne, in recognition of his achievements and commitment to Renfrewshire. Throughout his successful career he has never forgotten his roots.”

If approved, the Freedom of Renfrewshire will officially be awarded to John Byrne later this year. Find out more about the Freedom of Renfrewshire at

Photo Booth London


We are going to do a feature every week including the talented Kevin Mills who you can contact via They are based on folks from Glencoe so if you need subtitles then you have never been to the beautiful part of Scotland where people are very friendly but that doesn’t mean we can’t take the mickey out of fictional characters. Enjoy…


activity camp 1

YOUNG people can spring into the Easter holidays knowing they can have lots of fun and games.

Renfrewshire Leisure is running a series of activity camps for children in Primaries 1 to 7 at the Lagoon Leisure Centre, ON-X Linwood, Johnstone Community Sports Hub, Renfrew Leisure Centre and Park Mains in Erskine. These camps will be held between April 3 and April 17 and will include a variety of sports, arts and crafts, swimming, games and themed days.

activity camp 1

There will also be outdoor activities for 11 to 18 year olds that include mountain biking, kayaking, rock climbing and gorge walking at various locations from April 6 to April 17.

And there are Early Bird Discounts available for people who book between February 24 and March 1.

There will also be football camps at Renfrew’s KGV Pavilion, Ralston Sports Centre, Gryffe High School and Park Mains, in association with the Scottish Football Association.

activity camp 1

Other activities will be taking place at The Secret Collection, along with shows and performances for youngsters at various other venues and libraries throughout Renfrewshire.

Disability Bounce About A Bit event at the Lagoon on Saturday April 4, is for young people with a physical or learning disability or sensory impairment. Participants must be accompanied by an adult.

The Fit4Sport sessions at Riverbrae School and the Lagoon, on April 9 and 17 are multi-sport sessions for children with a physical or learning disability or sensory impairment.

activity camp 1

Go to for more details and to book a place at any of the camps or activities.

Renfrewshire Leisure chairperson, Councillor Lisa-Marie Hughes said: “We’ve got something for all ages and interests this Easter. So, there should be egg-stra fun for everyone!”


Rukeri are proud to have again been chosen as the turf supplier for the revamped green areas on Glasgow’s popular George Square following the Christmas Market earlier this year. Glasgow City Council awarded the turfing contract to Covanburn Contracts who chose turf from Rukeri for the project.


Covanburn Contracts is a civil engineering company who specialise in a range of civil engineering, groundwork and landscape disciplines. Glasgow City Council were looking to replace and patch in excess of 2000m2 of premium turf and needed a company to complete the works. They looked no further than East Kilbride based Covanburn Contracts, who were able to provide a solution that ensured the job was completed in time, and on budget.

When Covanburn Contracts approached Rukeri about the job it was highlighted that due to the location of the job (right in the centre of Glasgow!) the majority of deliveries would need to be on site early morning with a view to minimising disruption for commuters. Early deliveries also meant that the team at Covanburn Contracts could make a prompt start and complete the job within a small timeframe. Rukeri liaised closely with the men on site to ensure that each delivery had a workable quantity – meaning that no turf was left over night and only fresh turf that was cut merely hours ago was laid.


Tight timescales and service levels were not the only consideration for Covanburn Contracts when looking for a turf supplier for Glasgow’s George Square. Due to the prominence of the site and the volume of visitors attracted to the area, the quality of the turf needed to be very high. Initial feedback has been positive and both parties agree that the exceptional quality of turf looks great on site. 

When asked about Rukeri’s involvement in the project, Joe Reid, Procurement Manager at Covanburn Contracts commented ‘The office staff at Rukeri were exceptionally helpful with organising deliveries and prices for the turf. Deliveries to the site were hassle free and exactly as requested.’ 

George Square has had many a makeover over the years. Since its creation in 1781 it has been a prominent feature in the city centre, surrounded by many historical buildings and home to an important collection of statues and monuments. This includes those dedicated to Robert Burns, James Watt, Sir Robert Peel and Sir Walter Scott.  

Rukeri, a brand of Salt and Grit Solutions Ltd, are turf growers based in Paisley who supply turf to some of the biggest names within the civil engineering, landscaping and house building industries within Scotland. Of the project, Lisa Taylor, Marketing Executive at Rukeri says, ‘We were delighted to have been chosen by Covanburn Contracts as the turf supplier for this project. George Square is a well-known, popular location within the city centre and it thrills us to know that so many people will enjoy our turf and the joy that green spaces provide.’

Dog walk Barshaw 1

Dog lovers in Renfrewshire are being invited to have their say on the introduction of a voluntary dog walking scheme which would ask professional dog walkers to register and commit to providing a high-quality service as set out by the council.

Dog walk Barshaw 1

Dog walking companies that subscribe to the scheme would be given branded materials to show they have signed up and added to the list of trusted partners on the council website.

It is anticipated that a register would improve public perception of dog walking companies, reassure owners that their pets are being treated well and demonstrate the council’s commitment to raising standards – including tackling the issue of dog fouling in Renfrewshire.

Dog walk Barshaw 2

The survey will consider issues such as the maximum acceptable number of dogs to walk at any one time, necessity of appropriate insurance requirements and using appropriate areas to exercise dogs.

Councillor Cathy McEwan, Convener of Renfrewshire Council’s Infrastructure, Land and Environment Policy Board, said: “We want dog owners in Renfrewshire to feel comfortable when leaving their pets so this new register would give people peace of mind that their chosen dog walker has committed to providing a high quality service.

“It’s important that we hear the views of both dog walkers and pet owners as the scheme would need to work for everyone to make it a success.

Max and Josie Owens

“Please let us know your views as we look to shape how a potential scheme would work.”

The survey will run until 8 March 2020.

For more information and to submit your views, visit