PACE Theatre Company – Making the right Connections!

On the 13th, 14th, & 15th March PACE Theatre Company will be performing at The Wynd Auditorium as part of National Theatre Connections – a nationwide celebration of new plays for young people.

Each year new plays are commissioned for and about young people from some of the best contemporary playwrights, for performance by youth theatres all over the UK and Ireland, making Connections one of the world’s largest celebrations of youth theatre.

Last year PACE’s production of “The Guffin” by Howard Brenton was invited to perform at the National Theatre in London where it wowed critics and audiences alike and this year they will be hoping to emulate that feat with their production of “Heritage” by Dafydd James.


Mayday has dawned in Northbridge, and a group of misfit Youth gather to rehearse their heritage anthem to sing at the celebration. It soon becomes clear however that they have been chosen for a far darker purpose. What has Tubbsy hidden in his bag, why is Mark dressed as a stegosaurus and greater than all what does the Provost know!? Northbridge – a place full of whispers ready to reveal its ‘bloodiest’ secret

PACE’s Mhairi Gilbert who directs the play said “This has been a fantastic opportunity to work with the young actors on a new play and to create a completely original piece of theatre. What the audience can expect is an exciting and vibrant new piece of work which will showcase the talents of these young actors.”

Book now to see PACE Theatre Company perform “Heritage” at The Wynd Auditorium, Paisley 13th – 15th March 2014. Contact the box office on 0845 130 5218. Tickets £8/£6.

The cast will also be performing “Heritage” on Wednesday, 4th June at The Lyceum Theatre in Edinburgh as part of a double bill for the NT Connections Festival. Tickets can be purchased from The Lyceum Box Office on 0131 248 4848.

For more information about National Theatre Connections visit


Keep Safe Initiative.

Police Scotland and community group I Am Me are working together to set up a Keep Safe Initiative. The Keep Safe initiative is the first of its kind in Scotland and aims to encourage disabled people to live an ordinary life and to raise awareness of, and increase reports of disability hate crime. The Keep Safe initiative will work with a network of local shops, businesses etc to create safe places for disabled people to go if they are lost, scared or if they are the victim of crime.

Keep Safe places can be easily recognised with an I Am Me / Keep Safe window sticker. Staff within premises will assist in any way they can and will be encouraged to report any crimes or incidents to the police.


Keep Safe launched on 23rd August 2013 and was piloted in Paisley town centre. Early feedback from everyone involved indicates that the initiative is making a positive difference in Keeping People Safe.

Due to its initial success Police Scotland are now rolling Keep Safe out to all of Renfrewshire and would like to invite you and staff members along to a free training event on either;

Tuesday 21st January 2014 – 7.00pm or
Tuesday 28th January 2014 – 6.30pm

at the Wynd Centre, School Wynd, Paisley, PA1 2DB.

The event will last around 1hr 15mins and will include the opportunity to see the hard hitting drama production ‘I Am Me’, performed by PACE Theatre Company. This production highlights what disability hate crime is and the effects that incidents have on individuals and communities. The performance will be followed by a short talk from Police Scotland with information on how your business can participate in the Keep Safe initiative.

All Keep Safe premises will be advertised on a variety of websites and literature distributed across Renfrewshire. Spaces are limited and we would be delighted if you could join us.

To book your place, please contact Ewan Smith (details below). To secure your place we would advise booking early. Refreshments will be provided.

If you require any further information please don\’t hesitate to get in touch with PC Ewan Smith at or 0141 532 6029.


Drama project takes centre stage with Glasgow Airport support.

A theatrical production which educates young people on the devastating effects of disability hate crime will be delivered in Renfrewshire schools.

An award of £4,900 from the Glasgow Airport Flightpath Fund will allow the Paisley-based PACE Theatre Company to carry out the first phase of its ‘I Am Me’ initiative.

PACE founder and executive director David Wallace received the cheque from Archie Hunter, chairman of the FlightPath Fund, and Amanda McMillan, managing director of Glasgow Airport, at an event in Renfrew Town Hall to celebrate the success of the Fund.


Mr Wallace spoke at the event about how the FlightPath Fund supported a previous PACE project to raise awareness of cyber bullying. Representatives of other organisations which have received financial support in the past also addressed the audience, which included MPs, MSPs and councillors.

The I Am Me play will be accompanied by discussion workshops and the intention is to raise awareness of what constitutes a disability hate crime, reduce the number of incidents and encourage more reporting of incidents.

PACE is working with partners Renfrewshire Council and Police Scotland on the project, which will be delivered in schools, community groups and disability support groups. A steering group will be set up to seek the views of young people and disabled people which will influence the design and direction of the productions and workshops.

David Wallace said “More than a fifth of the population of Renfrewshire is classed as disabled or having a long-term illness. Too often people with a disability become the victims of crime because of that and appear to accept abuse as part of daily life.

“It is estimated that 97% of disability hate crimes go unreported and the purpose of I Am Me is to bring about a clearer understanding of the effect that incidents have on individuals, perpetrators and communities. We are extremely grateful to Glasgow Airport for the financial support which allows us to get this project off the ground.”

Archie Hunter said: “I Am Me is a fantastic initiative and one that we are very proud to support. PACE is an extremely innovative organisation which uses theatre to engage with young people in Renfrewshire, raising awareness of serious issues in a way they can relate to. Disability hate crime is undoubtedly a big problem in our society and the PACE Theatre Company is to be commended for tackling it in a creative way.”

Amanda McMillan added: “It is important that the population around the airport can share in our success and it was very encouraging to hear from some of the groups who have benefitted from the Flightpath Fund. Listening to representatives of these organisations speak passionately about their work makes us even more determined to continue supporting our communities.”

The Spree and Mòd Phàislig

Kids can enjoy the best of the fest too

Renfrewshire kids will have an action-packed time this October with The Spree and Mòd Phàislig running a full programme of music, comedy and drama events to keep them entertained.

The Spree is returning after a successful debut in 2012 and will this year run alongside the Royal National Mòd, Scotland’s premier celebration of Gaelic culture and language, on its first-ever visit to Paisley.

And with the festivals set to coincide with the school October break, festival organisers have included a wide range of events for children among the listings for The Spree and the Mòd fringe.

Toybox - who will be providing comedy for kids in the Spiegeltent

Highlights include a Spree Kids’ Comedy Club, with top comedians including Vladimir McTavish and Bruce Devlin performing special shows aimed at a younger audience.

There will also be a two-day children’s Mòd fringe, with a vibrant mix of arts, crafts and games delivered in partnership with Gaelic community group organisers, Sradagan, and featuring a special appearance from BBC Alba’s Dè a’ Nis.

And music-lovers will have plenty to keep them entertained, with gigs showcasing the best young musical talent in the area, featuring artists from Create Paisley and Loud ‘n’ Proud.

Other events will include:

– five fun-filled drama workshops for kids aged five to seven delivered by renowned youth theatre group PACE;

– fiddle and tune-writing workshops designed especially for kids;

– a bookbug session in Gaelic at Paisley Central Library.

Tickets for all children’s shows and workshops are on sale now. Links for these and more information can be found on the festivals websites at and

Renfrewshire Council leader, Mark Macmillan, said “It’s fantastic to see such a diverse line-up of children’s events in the town throughout the Spree and Mòd and it should make for a very exciting school holiday.

“We are looking forward to welcoming thousands of visitors to the town this October and know they will find plenty to see and do while they are here.”

Musical acts already announced for The Spree include Edwyn Collins, Capercaillie, Donnie Munro and Rachel Sermanni, while Craig Hill and Fred McAulay will provide the comedy.

Tickets for a unique combination between Admiral Fallow, The Twilight Sad and the Royal Scottish National Orchestra in Paisley Abbey sold out with 12 hours of going on sale.

A programme of Mòd fringe events will be happening around the town, in addition to the main Royal National Mòd competitions.

paisley abbey

Doors Open Days unlocks over 1000 doors this September

Knights Templar on horseback, Princess Marjorie, daughter of Robert the Bruce, King Edward, young people from PACE and Spark or Genius, Aberdeen Asset Management’s David Watt, Renfrewshire’s Provost Anne Hall and some Diabolical Diaries officially launched Doors Open Days 2013, Scotland’s annual celebration of buildings, people and places at Paisley Abbey on Wednesday 28 August.  

(This years Doors Open Day takes place on 14th-15th September)

paisley abbey
Doors Open Days® 2013 introduces a bit of theatrical flair to an already exciting programme of artists studios, castles, caves, houses, factories, riverboats, canal cruises, green doors, early railways and much, much more.

Paisley Abbey and staff hosted the national launch event on Wednesday 28 August, along with national Doors Open Days® coordinators Scottish Civic Trust’s staff John Pelan (Director) and Pauline McCloy (Events and Development Officer) and Renfrewshire Council staff Amanda Moulson (Town Centre Projects and Events Manager) and Donna Gallagher (Town Centre Projects and Events Assistant).

Renfrewshire’s Provost Anne Hall and Aberdeen Asset Management’s David Watt’s joined in the fun in Paisley’s town centre where staff and young people from Spark of Genius donned Knights Templar costumes on horseback to mark the occasion, whilst young people from PACE youth theatre group dressed as famous faces from the Abbey’s past introduced Renfrewshire’s Diabolical Diaries, a specially designed young person’s programme of Doors Open Days events throughout the region. Diabolical Diaries are now available to collect from libraries and participating venues.
To download a copy of the Diabolical Diaries or the Adult programme for Renfrewshire see

For the full, national programme of Doors Open Days events see


Doors Open Days gives free access to sites normally closed to the public, or which usually charge an entrance fee.  Doors Open Days® is coordinated nationally by the Scottish Civic Trust. It runs throughout Scotland every September as part of European Heritage Days.

From the first event in 1990 as part of Glasgow’s City of Culture festival the Doors Open Days® event has grown to become of one of Scotland’s most popular and widespread cultural festivals. Now in its 24 year Doors Open Days can look forward to over 1000 buildings and events taking part from the highlands to the borders, more than 5000 staff and volunteers helping organise and run events and venues, and more than 200,000 visitors expected to attend.   For more details see

Martin Gilbert, Chief Executive of Aberdeen Asset Management, said:

 “Aberdeen Asset Management is delighted to support Doors Open Days for the third year running.  We decided to remain involved in 2013 and 2014 following the excellent feedback we received from colleagues and visitors who had taken advantage of the wonderful opportunity to tour the buildings covered by this great initiative.”


John Pelan, Director of the Scottish Civic Trust, said:

“Doors Open Days is a wonderful celebration of buildings and communities in equal measure. It gives people a unique access to places normally out of bounds and spaces out of sight. The Scottish Civic Trust are proud to be the national coordinators of this wonderful festival and of the opportunity it provides to the Scottish public to explore their local surroundings. We are delighted to have the support of Historic Scotland and Aberdeen Asset Management.”


Anne Hall, Provost of Renfrewshire, said:
“Renfrewshire very proud to hold the National launch for Doors Open Days which always proves hugely popular. It is a wonderful way for local people and visitors to enjoy and celebrate Renfrewshire’s rich heritage for free. I would like to say thank you to everyone who came along to the national launch event for Doors Open Days, in particular to ‘Spark of Genius’ and Pace Theatre Company for their support.  I feel it’s really important to involve the young people in Renfrewshire and I hope that they not only enjoy Renfrewshire’s buildings, but also its past in the Children’s booklets ‘Diabolical Diaries’ and what a better way to start it than here at the Abbey.  This administration is fully supportive of town centre events to assist with the regeneration of the town centre and Renfrewshire on the whole.”

Welcome to SummerFest! 2013 the largest youth arts festival of its kind in the UK for young people aged 3 – 18 – organised and run by PACE Theatre Company who have over 20 years experience of working with young people.

With many different events and over 40 unique performances taking place, the festival is jam-packed full of exciting, fun and imaginative projects. Whether you take part for a day, a week, or all summer long, you are sure to find something to suit all tastes! From comedy to Shakespeare, musicals to movies, impro to scripts, there is something for everyone.

All the events have been devised to guarantee an enjoyable, creative and memorable experience for those who take part. So why not learn new skills, make new friends, and have a brilliant time this summer
10am – 4pm each day with a performance at the end of every Fest! Prices vary. Contact us on 0845 130 5218. click on the website to see a copy of our SummerFest! 2013 brochure.

Doors Open Day 2013 will be chance to get into buildings

An annual celebration of Renfrewshire’s fascinating architectural history will return later this year – and organisers are looking for buildings to add to the list.

Doors Open Day is a showcase of the country’s built heritage, where visitors take a peek through the keyhole at hundreds of Scotland’s buildings for free.

This year’s event takes place on 14 and 15 September and will be the 20th anniversary of Renfrewshire’s participation.

Paisley Abbey interior

Local buildings set to throw open their doors on the day include Paisley Abbey, the council chambers at Renfrewshire House, local churches and fire stations.

But organisers are looking for local buildings of historical or architectural significance which have not taken part before to come forward for this year’s event, which is supported by Renfrewshire Council.

Councillor Terry Kelly, Convener of the council’s Planning and Property Policy Board, said: “The idea behind Doors Open Day is to show people the hidden gems that link present-day Renfrewshire to its past.

“Renfrewshire has an architectural heritage to be proud of, and Doors Open Day gives residents a glimpse of the fascinating history on their own doorstep.

“While there are many local buildings that prove popular with visitors every Doors Open Day, we would love to add new attractions to our list.

“We are keen to hear from the owners or managers of interesting buildings throughout Renfrewshire.

“If you would like to offer or recommend a building to add to Doors Open Day, please call 0141 618 6794 or email by the end of May.”

Doors Open Day is part of a wider Europe-wide celebration of built heritage, and sees over 50 countries take part, with over 20 million visits annually.

The Renfrewshire event will feature a competition for children to have their passport ‘stamped’ as they visit different venues, and will have a fun historical theme.

The council will also be running a photo competition with visitors encouraged to share their pictures of the buildings on social media.

For more information about the national event, visit


You can download the Doors Open Day Leaflet for the Renfrewshire area by clicking here..

Quest4Talent Competition.

There is still time to enter the competition for the following categories.

Wednesday night at David Lloyd 6th March

Catagories: Bands

Bands can turn up on the night 5.30 for a sound check. Register upon arrival. 7pm start

Call Diane for more details: 07896689816

Monday 11th March at the Wynd in Paisley

2 categories:

>Scottish traditional (gaelic / scots song, instrumental incl accordian, bagpipes, clarsach etc… open to solo, groups, folk rock etc

>Chiors / Glee clubs

Sound check at 5.30 / 7pm start. Call Diane for more details 07896689816

Find out more


David Wallace walks the hot coals to help PACE Youth Theatre would like to express our support to David Wallace from PACE Youth Theatre in his endeavours to walk on hot coals, please read below for more information on how to help.

pace-youth-theatreDavid says “I think I once said I would walk over hot coals for our Youth Theatre. Well now I am going to. In these hard and difficult times the Youth Theatre needs every penny it can get and so I and others are walking on hot coals on Saturday 20th April to raise much needed funds.

PACE has an ethos of using drama to give young people the skills that will help them in life, but we also provide happy memories and true lifelong friendships…..that’s something money just can’t buy….! So please go to and support us if you can, with whatever you can, and share this with your friends. Thanks so very very much.”


David Wallace
Executive Director
PACE Theatre Company
0141 848 7471


National Theatre Connections 2013 – “The Guffin”

“Four young people hanging out in a derelict house find a strange object; it’s the Guffin. Touch it and your life is changed forever.”

PACE is proud to announce that this year we shall be making our debut performance for Howard Brenton’s new play ‘The Guffin’ as part of the National Theatre’s ‘Connections’ festival.

Connections is a national festival of new writing and young theatre making, organised by the National Theatre and performed by youth theatre groups across the UK, with professional support from the NT and its Partner Theatres.

Connections aims to inspire 13-19 year olds with high-quality new playwriting, give companies the knowledge, skills and confidence to bring the plays to life, involve a wide range of young companies, giving additional support where needed, and encourage young people to get involved in all aspects of theatre making.

‘The Guffin’ will be performed at The Wynd Centre in Paisley, March 6 & 7 2013 at 7.30pm. This will be followed by a performance at our Partner Theatre (The Lyceum, Edinburgh) in June 2013.
Tickets are now available from the PACE Box Office on  0845 130 5218 £5/£3.
In the meantime, if you would like to find out more, check out the NT Connections website


New Partners: What’s on Renfrewshire

We are always looking at ways to improve our service to our visitors and to do that, aim to partner up with other organisations. We can then provide added value to areas where, as volunteers, we can’t put in the resources and time needed to make those sections as informative as we would like.

whats-on-ren-bannerWe have an excellent events section, however it’s extremely hard to provide up to date events information as it takes time to do the research. What’s on Renfrewshire do an excellent job in finding local events not only in Paisley but in the whole of Renfrewshire and sometimes beyond.

We are happy to announce that our websites will now be working together to update everyone with all the latest events. You can still send your events in to us at or alternatively send them direct to What’s on Renfrewshire, who will display the events. Our team of volunteers can turn up to the event, take some photos, write a review and promote it on our social networks, giving double exposure to your event.

We welcome What’s on Renfrewshire to our partnership of sites promoting Paisley and Renfrewshire to the wider public.

What’s on Renfrewshire:

Our single aim at What’s On Renfrewshire is to make sure local events are promoted throughout the community for free! We understand that not every event being held has a budget for marketing, we also know that there are thousands of Renfrewshire residents who want to know what’s going on locally to them and that’s where we come in.

Part of our strategy is to build strong ties with other community groups and organisations allowing us to reach an even wider audience with our event listings, which is why partnering with was a no brainer! has such a strong presence not just in Paisley but throughout the West of Scotland and beyond and we’re proud to be working alongside Brian and the team to make sure local events get the best coverage they can!

Keep up to date by following and visiting What’s on Renfrewshire via the website or via Facebook

the spree

Paisley Spree is a triumph
Six months of planning, 24 events and nearly 3,000 people made last weekend’s new national festival, The Spree, a triumph.

The music, arts and comedy festival launches Paisley’s Year of the Mod and showed just how well the town is suited to holding major cultural events. Next October, the Spree will wrap round the Mod; making Paisley the focal point for Scottish music, drama and comedy.

the spreePeople from Tokyo, Texas, Ireland and throughout the UK visited Paisley to see artists such as Roddy Frame, Damien Dempsey and Karen Matheson, Fidil and Chemikal Underground. They also enjoyed some rip-roaring comedy: Craig Hill’s outrageous Jock’s Trap!, lunchtime improvisation, kids’ comedy and Saturday night’s Best of Scottish Comedy in association with the Stand comedy club.

A Spiegeltent was shipped in from Holland and local people watched on in amazement as this spectacular venue was erected in Paisley’s County Square within 24 hours.

There were four partners involved in funding and delivering the project; Creative Scotland, Renfrewshire Council, EventScotland and Bòrd na Gàidhlig.
Renfrewshire Council Leader Mark Macmillan said:

“The Spree was a great success. We were proud to welcome so many visitors to Paisley and, of course, Renfrewshire’s people got the chance of a great night out on their door step.

“The Spree shows us all how a real town setting like Paisley does can add to a festival’s character. The Abbey and the Spiegeltent were fantastic venues, the town’s people welcomed our visitors in the best Paisley spirit and the atmosphere around the town lively and friendly.”

The Spree organisers worked closely with local organisations such as: Reid Kerr College, who assisted with the photography and radio interviews; the University of West of Scotland, who are working on the festival evaluation; Loud ‘n’ Proud, a local youth charity who help develop young musicians in Scotland; and PACE Youth Theatre.

The festival ended yesterday with a full day of Celtic Connections that included a flavour of the Danny Kyle Stage. Previous finalists such as Breabach and Craig Jeffrey entertained a full Spiegeltent audience who were then treated to a Scottish exclusive performance by Francois and the Atlas Mountains.

Amanda Moulson, Renfrewshire Council’s Town Centres and Events Manager added:

“The Spree has had a great impact on Paisley and has placed us firmly on Scottish events map; proving that great things can happen in towns as well as cities. We’re happy to send out a huge thank you to everyone who attended a Spree event and who supported the festival in its first year.

“Paisley can prepare for an even a bigger Spree next year as we welcome the National Royal Mòd.”