Paisley and Renfrewshire Newsletter

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New help for a new job

New help is at hand for workers in Renfrewshire who struggle with childcare or travel costs in the early days of a new job.

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Renfrewshire Council’s Access to Work scheme is designed to help new workers sustain their employment, with funds available to help with childcare and travel costs in the first few weeks.

Council bosses are urging those who could access the fund to speak with their Job Centre advisor.

Renfrewshire Council Leader Mark Macmillan said: “Getting into work is one of the best things that anyone can do for their prospects, their health and their lifestyle, and we are determined to break down the barriers that make it difficult for people to start a job.

“The Access to Work fund will make a huge difference to those who find childcare and travel costs a real problem in the first working month.

“It will help to tackle poverty and make sure people throughout our communities get a fair chance at a more prosperous future.”

The fund can be used to help any unemployed resident of Renfrewshire from 16 – 64 years old seeking to return to work after receiving out of work benefits for at least four weeks.

Access to Work is funded by Renfrewshire Council’s Tackling Poverty programme, a £6million commitment to addressing the causes and effects of poverty on individuals, families and communities throughout Renfrewshire.

Anyone seeking more information about the Access to Work fund should speak first with their Job Centre advisor.

More information about the fund is also available at  www.investinrenfrewshire.com.

Paisley Abbey

Paisley Abbey could be extended into a major international tourist attraction if proposals for a fourth cloister and visitor centre get the go-ahead.

Paisley Abbey

Bosses at the A-listed 850-year-old church produced plans four years ago for a tourist facility based around the Abbey’s status as the cradle of the Stewart royal family – but were unable to progress them at the time.

Members of Renfrewshire Council’s Economy and Jobs Policy Board will next week be asked to give the go-ahead for officers to work with the Abbey to progress those plans, as part of a wider push to develop Paisley’s tourist economy.

The plans would see a fourth cloister built on to the Abbey to house a new entrance, shop and  visitor centre, as well as work to open up the mediaeval drain forming part of the Abbey complex as a visitor attraction.

If given the green light, council bosses would commit staff and consultant time, to be paid for from an existing Paisley town centre regeneration budget.

That would see the Abbey – currently run by the Church of Scotland – given assistance to develop an outline business case for the project, as well as an application to the Heritage Lottery Fund to help fund it.

For the project to happen, the Abbey would need to secure a package of funding from various sources. At this stage it is not being assumed the council will be contributing to the cost of that.

Renfrewshire Council Leader Mark Macmillan said: “Back in 2014 we published an ambitious vision of Paisley’s future as a thriving visitor attraction based around the town’s unique cultural and heritage assets.

“Work to make that a reality is already well under way, with Paisley’s bid for UK City of Culture 2021 fast building momentum, and work ongoing to develop other big regeneration projects such as the proposed transformation of Paisley Museum.

“The possibility of developing Paisley Abbey into an international visitor attraction was raised within the same strategy – and if our vision is to be reality this will be an important project.

“Those of us who see it every day already know the Abbey is a stunning-looking building but it and the Abbey Drain are both of national historic and archaeological importance and the potential is there to make more of them.

“Running a complex regeneration project of this kind is not something the Abbey’s current management are able to do by themselves – which is why it is proposed council staff and consultants lend their time and expertise.

“In doing so we could ultimately not only be boosting the Abbey’s income and ability to maintain the building, but adding to the overall visitor appeal of the town, with all the benefits that will bring for local traders and the wider community.”

Paisley Abbey was founded in 1245 and its colourful history saw William Wallace educated by monks there, while Marjory Bruce – daughter of Robert – is buried there after dying giving birth to the future Robert II of Scotland, the first of the Stewart monarchs and an ancestor of the current Queen.

The Abbey eventually fell into ruin before being extensively refurbished into one of the finest churches in Scotland in the 20th century.

Renfrewshire Council’s Economy and Jobs Policy Board is due to consider the proposals when it meets on Wednesday 25 May.

St Mirren fans have one month left to sign up to a scheme which could see them become the latest Scottish club to move into fan ownership after a fundraising deadline was called.

18/04/16... ST MIRREN PARK - PAISLEY. The St Mirren Independent Supporters Association (SMISA) has had a joint offer with ex-Saints director Gordon Scott for the majority shareholding in the club accepted in principle by the selling consortium.  Gordon Scott, George Adam

18/04/16…
ST MIRREN PARK – PAISLEY.
The St Mirren Independent Supporters Association (SMISA) has had a joint offer with ex-Saints director Gordon Scott for the majority shareholding in the club accepted in principle by the selling consortium. Gordon Scott, George Adam

The St Mirren Independent Supporter’s’ Association (SMISA) has teamed up with former club director Gordon Scott with a joint offer already accepted in principle by the consortium selling a majority shareholding.

The trust needs to sign up 1,000 members at a minimum of £12 per month for the deal to be viable – and are more than halfway there, having managed almost 600 since fundraising started in April.

But with other bidders on the scene, the deal needs to be completed this summer – and SMISA have now called an end date of Thursday 19 June to hit the target.

The announcement was made last night at a public meeting at The Paisley 2021 Stadium attended by hundreds, at which Gordon and SMISA chair George Adam MSP answered questions from fans.

The joint SMISA/Gordon offer is loosely based on the successful model run by Ann Budge and the Foundation of Hearts.

Gordon is putting up the bulk of the money needed to fund the deal, which would see him become majority shareholder and chairman, while the fans would get a director on the board and a legal agreement giving them exclusive right to buy the shares Gordon buys now within 10 years.

Membership starts at £12 per month, with a £25 per month option, and a premium package offering ten years of membership and other exclusive benefits for a one-off payment of £2,500. For more information, visit www.smisa.net

SMISA chair George Adam MSP said: “We have had a fantastic reaction from fans, with hundreds signing up the first couple of weeks of fundraising, and we want to thank all of those who have done so to date.

“A team of us have been working hard behind the scenes on this bid for a year now – but its success now rests on what happens in the next month.
“We have one month in which to get the numbers we need to make this deal viable. If we don’t we won’t get the chance again.

“For the price of a pint a week, St Mirren fans have it in their hands to take control of the future of their club and everything it means to this community, and preserve it for future generations.”

Gordon Scott said: “The current board deserve a lot of credit for all they have done over the years – but one way or another they are going to sell up and move on.

“St Mirren fans have a simple choice – either be part of what are doing and build the future of our club together, or leave that future entirely to chance.

“It would be a life-defining achievement for me to become chairman of the club I have supported since I was a boy.

“My aim is simple – work with the fans and the community to give St Mirren the fresh ideas it needs, get the club back into the top league where it belongs, and hand it over to the fans to safeguard forever.”

Renfrewshire Chambers annual B2B event “Business Matters in Renfrewshire” returns for sixth year.

Renfrewshire’s largest free business event returns to Paisley for the 6th consecutive year on Wednesday 8th June at the Lagoon, Paisley.

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“Business Matters in Renfrewshire –your local B2B event” is organised by Renfrewshire Chamber and is open to everyone interested in business.

With 50+ exhibitors and 6 seminars running throughout the day.

  1. 10.15-11.00 ‘The WOW Factor’ – Social Media For Customer Service Excellence with NSDesign
  2. 11.15-12.00 “Marketing Scotland in the Digital Age” with VisitScotland
  3. 12.15-13.00 “Paisley 2021/Invest/City Deal” with Renfrewshire Council
  4. 13.15-14.00 “Mastering Selling Skills for your business” with Business Gateway
  5. 14.15-15.00 “Are you a Manager or a Leader?” with UWS
  6. 15.15-16.00 “How to grow your exports” with Scottish Enterprise

Commenting on the event Acting Chief Exec Bob Grant said “B2B is a great way to engage face to face with the wider business community and market your offer.  If you are in business in Renfrewshire I strongly recommend coming along.  It’s a great opportunity to meet new and existing contacts and network with 50+ businesses in one go.  The free seminars are an excellent way to learn new skills and refresh old ones.”

For more information and to register please visit the Chamber events page at  www.renfrewshirechamber.com

Hashtag for the event is #b2bpaisley

Paisley is set to welcome a tartan army at the weekend when a record entry of up to 4,000 pipers and drummers descends on the town for one of the biggest dates in world piping.

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The 2016 British Pipe Band Championships are starting a three-year run in the town, with a crowd of tens of thousands expected at the St James Playing Fields, better known as the home of local amateur football.

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Some of the world’s top pipers, from throughout the UK and Ireland, will take to the competition arena before judges from the Royal Scottish Pipe Band Association.

The event will be open from 9am, with bands competing throughout the day with the final march-past and prizegiving running for an hour from 5.30pm.

And event chieftain – Renfrewshire’s Provost Anne Hall – met with lone piper Alan McGeoch of Johnstone Pipe Band at the venue.

She said: “We are thrilled to be hosting this prestigious event here in Paisley – being able to attract and host major events like this is another boost for the town as momentum builds on the bid for UK City of Culture 2021.

“I am sure the sight of 4,000 pipers and drummers lined up for the final march-past will be a spectacular one and I am honoured to be a part of it.

“It should be a great boost for local traders to have so many visitors arriving in town and I would encourage the bands and their supporters to head into the town centre and experience all it has to offer.”

RSPBA chief executive Ian Embelton added: “The British Pipe Band Championships is the first of the five major events we run each summer, including the world championships and we are delighted to be coming to Paisley for the first time.

“This year’s event will have a record entry, which we are really pleased with, and we are looking forward to a great championships.

“Renfrewshire Council has laid on a great day of entertainment and I would encourage anybody looking for a family day out to come down.”

Attractions will include a food and drink village featuring international cuisine and Scottish fayre as well as a fully-licensed bar.

Other free entertainment will include a Highland dancing competition, and sporty activities run by Renfrewshire Leisure and by the Street Stuff youth team, plus face painting, giant games, crazy golf and a bouncy castle.

Designated event parking will be at West College Scotland, the Paisley 2021 stadium, Paisley Grammar School and Castlehead High School.

Visitors should be aware there will be no on-site parking at the St James Playing Fields for the public – this will be for pipe band coaches and event officials only.

Free shuttle buses will run directly to the event site throughout the day from West College Scotland, the Paisley 2021 Stadium, and Paisley Gilmour Street station. Full details are at  www.renfrewshire.gov.uk.events

The full running order for the day, showing all bands, grades and timings, is now available at  www.rspba.org

Renfrewshire Council has teamed up with Police Scotland to provide a unique opportunity for four local people to train as Special Constables.

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The trainees will work alongside regular police officers, helping to build strong partnerships in the community, patrolling streets, preventing crime and strengthening relationships with local people to help keep communities safe.

They will be involved in a wide range of activities, from policing football matches to assisting at road accidents. Special Constables are often assigned to major sporting and public events.

To be eligible for one of the four positions, applicants must be unemployed and live in the Renfrewshire area. The trainees will be on duty 35 hours a week and will be paid the National Living Wage. The traineeships will last for up to 11 months.

All applications will go through Police Scotland’s national recruitment and selection process. The successful applicants will receive training at the Scottish Police College similar to that provided to probationer police officers.

Councillor Tommy Williams, convener of Renfrewshire Council’s Housing and Community Safety Policy Board, said:
‘These new posts are part of the Council’s commitment to keeping Renfrewshire communities safe and working closely with our partners in the police.

‘They follow the opening earlier this year of our new Community Safety Hub in Paisley which provides a base for joint working between council staff and the local police officers.

‘These traineeships also offer a great opportunity for local people to develop valuable skills which will boost their employability.

‘Ensuring that residents and visitors feel safe in our towns and neighbourhoods is key to the wellbeing of our communities and to the success of important regeneration projects such as Paisley’s bid to become UK City of Culture in 2021.

‘Becoming a Special Constable is a great opportunity to support our communities, make a real difference to the lives of local people, and get some great skills and experience.’

Full details of these posts can be found on www.renfrewshire.gov.uk/specialconstable or by calling 0141 618 7600.

The deadline for applications is Monday 23 May.

This Saturday, Paisley & District Scouts will host their annual charity duck race. This year’s event is raising funds for the Brightest Star and local Scouting.

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The duck race has benefited in past years from local businesses and organisations providing pro-bono support or buying corporate ducks (£100 each, still some left…). This year is no exception and we are delighted the McCallum School of Music are supporting this year’s event by managing and securing the performances on the day.

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The first act being announced this week is the phenomenal singer songwriter Emily Middlemas. Emily is known due to her fantastic voice but also her trip to judges houses on XFactor and from performing at Hue & Cry at Paisley Town Hall.

Commenting on the partnership, Director of McCallum School of Music, Angela McCallum said:
“I am so excited to be involved in this year’s Renfrewshire Scouts Duck Race, we have some amazingly talented youngsters in Renfrewshire who will be performing on the day including our very own XFactor girl Emily Middlemas! I hope you all can come down and enjoy the event which kicks off at 11:30am’

District Commissioner, Rob Murray, said:
“We are thrilled that Angela and her team are supporting this year’s duck race. McCallum School of Music have supported us in the past and have really ensured the day is special and enjoyed by all.”

“I am very excited that Emily Middlemas is performing this Saturday and I hope the good people of Barrhead, Neilston and Paisley will come along and enjoy her remarkable voice.”

The event is this Saturday, with entertainment starting at 11:30am and the races starting at 2:30pm.
Tickets can be bought on the day or via  http://bit.ly/1RWTA2y

Paisley’s UK City of Culture 2021 ambitions had a resounding public show of support at the launch of a new drive to let everyone connected to the town take their place at the heart of the bid.

Here are some photographs taken on Thursday of the launch for the brand book. To download a full version of the brand book including usable marketing material, logos and information about the bid, visit www.paisley2021.co.uk/get-involved

Many thanks to David Weir of Paisley.org.uk for taking the photographs.

Renfrewshire-Wide Credit Union is re-launching their primary school saving clubs under the new name of ‘Cash Cubs’. Cash Cubs is a new initiative building on the successful school saving clubs launched by the credit union in Renfrewshire schools in 2009. Bringing the concept bang up to date with the addition of the fun and exciting Cash Cub mascot, primary school pupils are encouraged to get even more active with their school credit union or to join from scratch if they’re not already a member.

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Alison Dowling launched the original RWCU school credit union project and is now rolling out Cash Cubs across Renfrewshire. Alison said, “We’re delighted to officially launch Cash Cubs in Arkleston primary school. We’re also looking forward to launching in other schools, and bringing the fun and excitement of Cash Cubs to more of our budding savers across Renfrewshire Schools. Cash Cubs will help children to save up money and learn lots of essential life skills along the way, while building up a savings habit that we hope will last a lifetime.”

RWCU - Master Logo Mock UP NEW COLOURSAlison added “Renfrewshire-Wide Credit Union has benefitted massively from Renfrewshire Council’s Credit Union Development Fund. It has enabled us to bring Cash Cubs to our credit union to revitalise the essential financial education work we undertake in partnership with Renfrewshire primary schools. We have more exciting plans in the pipeline that the fund has helped bring to life, so we give a big thank you to Leader of the Council Mark MacMillan and the council team for getting behind us to help the people of Renfrewshire”.

For further information on the Renfrewshire-Wide Credit Union please contact Louise Houston, RWCU on T: 0141 889 3111 or louise@rwcu.co.uk

Web: www.rwcu.co.uk

Facebook – Renfrewshire-Wide Credit Union

Twitter – @RWCREDITUNION

 

Paisley’s UK City of Culture 2021 ambitions had a resounding public show of support at the launch of a new drive to let everyone connected to the town take their place at the heart of the bid.

12/05/16.... PAISLEY TOWN CENTRE....... public launch of the For Paisley 2021 campaign Ð a major drive to get local residents and businesses to show their support for the townÕs UK City of Culture 2021. Councillor Mark Macmillan, chair of the Paisley 2021 partnership board;  - Jean Cameron, Paisley 2021 Bid Director Lily Jane

12/05/16….
PAISLEY TOWN CENTRE…….
public launch of the For Paisley 2021 campaign Ð a major drive to get local residents and businesses to show their support for the townÕs UK City of Culture 2021. Councillor Mark Macmillan, chair of the Paisley 2021 partnership board;
– Jean Cameron, Paisley 2021 Bid Director
Lily Jane

The For Paisley 2021 campaign aims to give everybody in Paisley, Renfrewshire and beyond the chance to share what they love about the town and fly the flag for the culture bid.

12/05/16.... PAISLEY TOWN CENTRE....... public launch of the For Paisley 2021 campaign Ð a major drive to get local residents and businesses to show their support for the townÕs UK City of Culture 2021. Councillor Mark Macmillan, chair of the Paisley 2021 partnership board;  - Jean Cameron, Paisley 2021 Bid Director Mark Macmillian, Tommy Mcgory, Danielle Caira, Maureen Hill, Linda Nutini, Ian Henderson, Andrew Mitchell, Fiona Smith, Scott Glassford, Katie Finnin

12/05/16….
PAISLEY TOWN CENTRE…….
public launch of the For Paisley 2021 campaign Ð a major drive to get local residents and businesses to show their support for the townÕs UK City of Culture 2021. Councillor Mark Macmillan, chair of the Paisley 2021 partnership board;
– Jean Cameron, Paisley 2021 Bid Director
Mark Macmillian, Tommy Mcgory, Danielle Caira, Maureen Hill, Linda Nutini, Ian Henderson, Andrew Mitchell, Fiona Smith, Scott Glassford, Katie Finnin

It includes a brand book – available to download as of today – including posters, logos, email signature, and key cultural facts about the bid and the town.

The aim is for anybody with an interest in the bid to find out how they can be part of it and access all the material they need to showcase their support For Paisley 2021 and develop their own bid campaign.

The campaign was launched in the town’s High Street by Councillor Mark Macmillan, chair of the Paisley 2021 partnership board, and Paisley 2021 Bid Director Jean Cameron.

They were joined by community groups, people from the local cultural scene, local business group Paisley First, pupils from local secondary Gleniffer High School, and town centre businesses including Linda Nutini, owner of Castelvecchi chip shop and mum of singing star Paolo.

The lunchtime launch included a giant Paisley 2021 logo and gave passers-by the chance to stop to have their picture taken with branded props.

The launch took place on the same day as the longlist of albums for the 2016 Scottish Album of the Year Award was announced. Paisley will be home to the SAY Award – the most prestigious date in the Scottish music calendar – for the next two years, with the 2016 ceremony taking in Paisley Town Hall on 29 June.

Councillor Macmillan said: “Winning the UK City of Culture 2021 title would make a massive difference to the town, and everybody in Paisley and Renfrewshire would feel the benefits.

“We have had great support from the local community since the bid launched last year – but there may be others who want to get involved and are not sure how.

“The aim of the brand book is to make it easy for any individual, group or business to show their support – the next few years are going to be such an exciting journey for the town and we want as many people as possible to come with us.”

Bid Director Jean Cameron added:  “Paisley 2021 branding has been visible around the town and at our events for a while now – it reflects the Paisley Pattern and the values and high standard of creativity for which the town is known around the world.

“Today is about taking the brand into the heart of that community and saying ‘this is yours, please use it’ – and that goes for Paisley people throughout the rest of the world too.

“Although we have had great backing to date we will only have a chance of winning if we show the judges at the UK Government’s Department of Culture, Media and Sport the local community is For Paisley 2021.

“To have this show of support on the day we get the first look at some of the fantastic musicians heading to Paisley for the SAY Award just shows the momentum the town is building.”

To download a full version of the brand book including usable marketing material, logos and information about the bid, visit www.paisley2021.co.uk/get-involved