Paisley Photographs, official Paisley website containing Photographs of Paisley, Renfrewshire, Scotland with some superb videos of Paisley and the town.

Paisley gets set to host Monte Carlo Classic Car Rally.

Paisley is preparing to roll out the red carpet for some very special visitors when one of world motorsport’s most glamorous events rolls into town this week.

This Thursday 23rd January, up to 100 classic cars from through the decades – including vintage Porsches, Jaguars and Mini Coopers – will assemble outside Paisley Abbey for the only UK start leg of the Monte Carlo Classic Car Rally.

Thousands are expected to turn out for the event, which will see live entertainment during the afternoon before the cars start to depart for France at 6pm.

Legendary racing driver Paddy Hopkirk and Renfrewshire’s Provost Anne Hall will wave the cars off on the 2,688km journey to Monte Carlo, via the Channel Tunnel and over the snow-covered Alps.

The Renfrewshire town has been chosen as one of five start points for this year’s event – with the others being Barcelona, Stockholm, Oslo and Reims.

This year’s event will also feature a special display of Hillman Imps – built at former Rootes car plant in Renfrewshire – which will be returning home 50 years after the first Imps took part in the Monte Carlo Rally.

Since the event returned to Scotland in 2011, more than 30,000 spectators have turned out to see the cars off. This year’s event is being hosted by Renfrewshire Council in partnership with the Rally Start Committee.

Renfrewshire Council Leader Mark Macmillan said: “We are delighted to be able to welcome this prestigious and world-famous event to Paisley and are anticipating a great day for the area.

“Being able to attract an occasion of this calibre is a reflection of Paisley’s growing reputation as a home for top-class events and the distinctive architecture of Paisley Abbey and Town Hall will provide a unique backdrop to the Rally.”

Councillor Macmillan was able to pick up a flavor of the Rally during a preview event this week, held on the Gleniffer Braes overlooking the town.

There, he met rally competitors including Malcolm Oswald, who is marking his 60th birthday by travelling to Monte Carlo in a 1.5 Riley which had been lying in bits in a garage for 37 years before being lovingly rebuilt and restored.

Malcolm said: “”My father was mad keen on the Monte Carlo rallies in the 1950s and I grew up with it. I always wanted to do it so I put my application in this year.

“The car was basically days from being scrapped. It lay in an awful state in a garage under dust and the last tax disc was 37 years beforehand. We’ve done quite a bit of work on it, and, if we can make it, it will be a wonderful feat.”

The event will see road closures in place in Paisley’s Bridge Street and Cotton Street. The cars will travel along the town’s Barrhead Road to the M77, then take the A76 though Mauchline and Cumnock on their way south.

Clyde One DJs will host the live entertainment from 4pm on the stage in Cotton Street, which will also feature the Kennedy Cupcakes dance troupe as well as music.

Free event parking will be available at Wallneuk and at West College Scotland.

Article courtesy of Renfrewshire Council.

Paisley Museum

Paisley excellent for tourists says Visit Scotland.

The Paisley Museum and the Coats Observatory have been named as four star visitor attractions which offer tourists an excellent standard of welcome, hospitality and service.

The award follows a series of secret inspections by mystery shoppers from Visit Scotland, the national tourism organisation.

Paisley Museum

The grading system focuses on the standard of the welcome, hospitality and service attractions provide. The Renfrewshire Council attractions were awarded three stars in 2011.

Councillor Jim Harte, Convener of Renfrewshire Council’s Sport Leisure and Culture Policy Board, said, “Paisley Museum is home to an iconic and nationally significant collection of artefacts including the Arbuthnott Missal. Side by side with this mediaeval treasure are contemporary exhibitions including the incredibly popular Lego Brick City.

“Visit Scotland has recognised the sheer quality of the museum and the observatory and the dedication of the employees who make both attractions so welcoming for visitors.

“After the inspection in 2011 the council decided to aim for four stars. An improvement plan was put in place and it is excellent news that our efforts have paid off.

“As part of the improvement plan we installed a new automated planetarium in the Coats Observatory. We also invested £110,000 in a nine month restoration of the Pillar Gallery. During the modernisation, a suspended roof installed in the 1960’s was taken down unveiling the Victorian splendour of the original twin barrel vaulted ceiling.

Paisley Museum

“The next step is clearly achieving five stars and that’s our target for 2015.”

The number of stars awarded to an attraction tells visitors what they can expect:
*       1 star – clean and tidy, a fair and acceptable, if basic, standard
*       2 stars – a good overall standard
*       3 stars – a very good standard
*       4 stars – an excellent standard
*       5 stars – an exceptional standard.
The Paisley Museum opened in 1871. The building was designed by the well-known Glasgow architect John Honeyman and paid for by Sir Peter Coats of the famous Coats thread manufacturing family.

The museum is home to Paisley Shawl Collection which is a Recognised Collection of National Significance to Scotland.
Coats Observatory opened in 1883 and is the oldest public observatory in Scotland. It was gifted to the people of Paisley by Thomas Coats and was also designed by John Honeyman.

For regular updates on local news and events follow @RenCouncilNews on Twitter or our page on Facebook at

suicide memorial tree, purple hearts

Fifth annual service to remember suicide victims.

The fifth annual service to remember those who have lost their lives to suicide in Renfrewshire will be held on Tuesday 21 January.

The ceremony will take place at council HQ in Cotton Street, Paisley, where there is a memorial tree for victims of suicide.

The event is being organised by the Renfrewshire support group, Survivors of Bereavement by Suicide (SOBS), and will be attended by Renfrewshire’s Provost Anne Hall.

The service will be led by Reverend Alan Birss of Paisley Abbey and Father John Tormey of St Mirin’s Cathedral.

Provost Hall said: “This annual event is a worthy cause which we are happy to be able to support. I would like to extend the invite to any local people who wish to join us on the day.

“Suicide can affect people of all ages and backgrounds and there are various groups which can offer help. This occasion offers support to those who have lost loved ones and, crucially, highlights the help that is in place to prevent suicide.

“Talking about problems can save lives and there are plenty of people and organisations where individuals or their families and friends can talk and get help.”

Friends and relatives should meet from 3.15pm on Tuesday 21 January in the marriage suite to collect a commemorative purple heart on which they can write a message for their loved one.

At 3.45pm, there will be a procession to the tree, where the Provost will lay a wreath and light the tree, after which visitors can place purple hearts on the tree.

Afterwards, all attending are invited to join the Provost for refreshments in Paisley Abbey.

The event is being supported by Choose Life, the national strategy to prevent suicide in Scotland.

Anyone wanting more information on the Renfrewshire meetings of SOBS, can call Choose Life’s Young Person’s Resource Worker Lisa Jane Aitken on 0141 849 2200, or email

The national helpline Breathing Space can be reached on 0800 83 85 87, and the number for The Samaritans is 08457 90 90 90.

The Moscow State Circus INTU Breahead.

The Moscow State Circus returns to the UK with its latest & greatest production to date.
Set in the mystical centre of Moscow’s cultural & artistic quarter ‘PARK GORKOGO’ (Gorky Park) is the perfect seasonal back drop for what is undoubtedly the greatest & most famous circus on earth.

Superstar Clowns Splendid Pavlik & Klava invite the audience to this wondrous & mysterious place, a place to romance, a place to stroll & take in Moscow at sunset & a place to see magnificent feats of human achievement, the like of which have never been witnessed in Great Britain before.

As our Loveable Buffoons reminisce about past times in one of the most famous cities on earth they are surrounded by a multitude of flying, back flipping, juggling & roller skating performers

As the park changed in accordance with the mood of the new century, it’s traditions were the basis of the new concept of Park Gorkogo, these changes are reflected in the new show, as like a pendulum, it swings from the earth to the sky in incredible breath-taking succession.

This years show features the
Award winning Flying Trapeze of Alievs White Birds,
The unbelievable roller-skating of the Veslovskis.
Three bathing beauties swept up on the revolving Ariel Ring and the unique Yakovlev Vertical Pole Jugglers.
From the most demanding feats of strength from the hand balancing of Vladislav Khostik to the gorgeous & gracious Ariel sail of Natalia Goncharova.
Add to this mix, the Kozak whip crackers & the revolving Russian Swing, catapulting its 10 strong troupe high into the apex of the chapitou at breakneck speed.

Don’t miss this amazing show, created especially for its first ever European tour.

The Moscow State Circus
INTU Breahead, Glasgow (Formally Xscape)
Thursday 9th to Sun 19th January
Thursday 9th – 7:45pm
Friday 10th – 5pm & 7:45pm
Saturday 11th – 2pm,5pm & 8pm
Sunday 12th – 2pm & 5pm
Monday 13th – 7:45pm
Tuesday 14th – no performances
Wednesday 15th – 7:45pm
Thursday 16th – 5pm & 7:45pm
Friday 17th – 5pm & 7:45pm
Saturday 18th – 2pm,5pm & 8pm
Sunday 19th – 2pm & 5pm

ticketmaster 0844 856 555

All photographs above were taken for by Alex Kyle Photography.

Bull Inn Paisley

The Best Pubs in Paisley.

We recently asked our members on our Facebook Group what were their top 3 pubs in Paisley and we have compiled a list of those pubs below. Should you have a suggestion then please add it to our comments at the foot of the page, if you do not use Facebook then you can also send in your suggestion using our contact page.

There have been many changes over the last decade or so in Paisley, pubs have changed hands, closed down or moved away. Thankfully we still have a pretty decent pub and entertainment scene in town and most within walking distance of each other. It is a difficult financial climate for landlords to operate in and Scotland’s smoking ban, which has been in force since 2006, has meant that establishments have had to adapt to the challenges of bringing in new customers whilst keeping regular customers happy. (links below are not the responsibility of

In no particular order the best pubs in Paisley are..

      1. Paddy Malarky’s
      2. The Bull Inn
      3. The Tea Gardens Tavern
      4. The Wee Howff
      5. The Old Swan
      6. Hamishes’ Hoose
      7. Canal Station
      8. The Bungalow
      9. The Bankhouse
      10. Lord Loundsdale
      11. The Club Bar
      12. The Tile Bar
      13. Gabriels
      14. The Anchor Bar
      15. Wig n Pen
      16. Craig Dhu
      17. The Argyll Bar
      18. The Alamo
      19. The Abbey Bar
      20. Kilty Kilty
      21. Kennedys
      22. Cafe Borgia


One name that comes up whenever we discuss pubs in Paisley is Carnegie’s (old Tudor Arms). This popular pub and nightspot has lain empty for many years yet people still talk about it, which got me thinking. Is there such a place existing now that we may be talking about in years to come?

“The best pubs in Paisley” list will be helpful when you come to visit one of the 15 best places to visit in Paisley, or kill two birds with one stone and visit one of the pubs that feature in our 15 best places to eat and drink in Paisley.

This is not an exhaustive list of all the pubs in Paisley but I do hope that it gets you thinking about what we still have in town.  We would encourage you to pop in and have a drink, something to eat and of course relax and enjoy yourself.

I would like to say thanks to all our contributors below..

Wilma Hendrie Steele, Allan Lindsay, Doug Hepburn, Angie Heaney, Allan Lindsay, Christina Pieraccini, Ronnie Townsend, Marie Connelly, Mark Anderson, George Cumming, Allan McClure, Willie Roberton, Jean-Marie Stewart, Brian Fraser, Frederic Charre, Barbara Happy Gilmour, Amanda Lewis, Martin Eaglesham, Graeme McIntyre, Kevin Doyle, Kirstie Porteous, Lynsey Moore, Lynne Morrow, Andy Campbell, Paul Halbert, Walter Hawthornthwaite, Mags MacGee, David Mitchell, Scott Manson, Duncan Deans, Lesley King, Billy Curr, Craig Sinclair, Kirsty McDonald and Allan Moore.

Paisley Pub Guide Photos from 2005:

I used to run the Paisley Pub Guide many years ago and took loads of photos for the website, unfortunately I do not have the high resolution images but you may still be able to see some changes and pubs that are no longer in the town.

Please note this was 2005 and not recent photographs.

Paisley to host Monte Carlo Classic Rally.

Renfrewshire has pulled off a major coup as it gets set to host one of motorsport’s most iconic and world-renowned events – the Monte Carlo Classic Rally.

Up to 100 classic cars dating back to the 1920s will assemble in Paisley town centre before setting off for the glitz and glamour of the French Riviera.

The event – on the evening of 23 January 2014 – will see Paisley as one of five departure points, alongside Barcelona, Stockholm, Oslo and Reims.

Date: 23 January 2014

Time: Entertainment from 4pm, cars leaving from 6pm

Venue: Abbey Close, Paisley

Vehicles driven by classic car lovers will set off from outside Paisley Abbey on the 2,688km adventure to Monte Carlo, via the Channel Tunnel and over the snow-covered French Alps.

Since the event returned to Scotland in 2011, around over 30,000 spectators have watched internationally-famous cars such as Imps, Triumphs, Porsches and Bentleys set off for France.

This year’s event is expected to see the total economic benefit to Scotland top the £4 million mark since 2011.

The entry list is truly global, with crews from Scotland and the UK joining crews from across Europe. Among those are a Mediterranean mega-yacht captain in a 1958 Riley, a Zurich-based world land-speed record hopeful in a Porsche, and two French crews who will travel to Paisley only to go all the way back again.

Residents had a chance to see some classic cars up close for themselves at a launch event outside Paisley Abbey today (Thursday) – including a 1926 Bentley and a Renfrewshire-made Hillman Imp.

There on the day were Rosemary Smith, Irish rally driver of the 1960s, who will be starting the race, and Paul Coulter – who wrote the play Linwood No More about Linwood’s former Hillman Imp factory and who will be taking part in the rally.

Renfrewshire Council Leader Mark Macmillan said: “We are delighted to welcome this prestigious event and would like to thank the organisers for bringing it here.

“Being chosen to host an occasion of this calibre is a major thumbs-up for the area and the latest boost to Paisley and Renfrewshire’s fast-growing reputation as a venue for top-class events.

“Our events strategy – including this year’s Royal National Mòd and Spree arts festival – is helping to drive the regeneration of the area and boost local businesses.

“We look forward to another big crowd in January and I’m sure the sight of these magnificent vehicles assembling in the town will be a spectacle not to be missed.”

Douglas Anderson, competitor and spokesman for the Rally Start Committee said: “Since we brought the rally start back to Scotland in 2011, it has surpassed all expectations. It is exciting, colourful and endures in peoples’ imaginations.

“Paisley will be an excellent location as a start venue. It has a stunning visual backdrop, with the historic Abbey and Town Hall.

“It also has quick access to the first stages of the route for the cars of all eras that will be taking part. We know it will be a spectacle which befits such a famous event.”

A still-to-be-announced week-long programme of related events will take place around Renfrewshire to mark the occasion – with the area’s links to the car industry through the former Hillman Imp factory at Linwood set to be celebrated.

Paul Coulter, writer and rally competitor, added: “This year is the 50th anniversary of the production of the first Hillman Imp in the area, and 2014 will be 50 years from the first time Imps took part in the rally.

“Paisley was at one time the epicentre of the Scottish car-building industry and it is fantastic to mark this anniversary with the rally starting from the town.”

You can find information about the rally on its Facebook page.

Images courtesy of Renfrewshire Council.

DEBRA Shop Opens on Moss Street.

Brand New DEBRA Charity Superstore opened last week in Paisley’s Moss Street, Renfrewshire’s Depute Provost John Caldwell s pictured below officially opened the store.

DEBRA is the only national charity supporting people with the skin blistering condition Epidermolysis Bullosa (EB), a rare genetic condition which causes the skin to blister and shear at the slightest friction or even spontaneously.

There are over 5,000 people living with this devastating condition in the UK. DEBRA relies on the generosity of the public to carry out its work, improving lives and giving hope through specialist nursing care, family support and vital research to find a cure.  DEBRA Charity shops play a vital part in raising much needed funds and awareness for the charity.

Please visit for more info



Close shave for councillor at EVE Spa.

It was a ‘close shave’ for Renfrewshire’s Depute Provost John Caldwell on a recent visit to the EVE Spa in Paisley’s Lagoon Leisure Centre.

Cllr Caldwell, proud owner of a moustache for the past thirty-five years, decided to do a ‘reverse Movember’ and shave his OFF to support the popular campaign which raises awareness of male cancers.

Step forward, the staff of EVE Spa at the Lagoon, who offered to do it for him with the promise of a facial treatment to help him recover from the trauma of being moustache-less for the first time in years!

Cllr Caldwell said: “For almost all my married life, I’ve had my moustache. In fact, the only other time I’ve been without one, I actually shaved it off for charity!

“I just looked around and saw all this moustache-growing and realised I wanted to do my bit. Men are really bad at doing something about their health, so I wanted to do anything I could to help raise awareness and funds, even if it’s just a bit of fun.

“I’d like to thank the EVE Spa for helping me out with the shave and the facial. It’s a really stunning place and a real asset to the local area, I’d recommend everyone try it out.”

Joyce McKellar, chief executive of Renfrewshire Leisure, said: “What Depute Provost Caldwell is doing for Movember is certainly a bit different – instead of growing a moustache he’s taking his off!

“The staff at the spa were very gentle with him when they shaved off his moustache and they gave him a nice facial afterwards.

“I hope people support the Depute Provost’s efforts for the Movember charity.”

You can sponsor the Depute Provost now on the Movember website at

EVE Spa has a number of treatments, gift vouchers and membership deals available for Christmas. The sales team is available on 0300 300 0266.

Johnstone is lit up at Christmas event.

Johnstone was illuminated at the weekend as hundreds of people turned out for the town’s annual Christmas Lights Switch-on.

The popular annual event – which took place in the town’s Houstoun Square – served up an afternoon of festive fun, with live music and entertainment.

Boyband Rewind were on hand to perform before teaming up with Renfrewshire’s Provost Anne Hall on stage to push the button on the lights.

They were also joined by local youngster Rebecca Lamb, aged 11, who won a creative story-writing competition to have the honour of helping with the switch-on.

Other acts to feature on stage during the day included DJs from Pulse FM and local talent from Splash Productions and the Per4mance Stage School.

Highlights also included fun fair rides, Santa’s Grotto, and a crafts fair run by St Vincent’s Hospice.

Provost Hall said: “The Johnstone Christmas Lights Switch-on is always well-attended and I’m pleased to say this year followed in that tradition.

“However, there was a note of sadness surrounding this year’s event given the tragic events in Glasgow a few hours before – and I asked the crowd to take a moment to ensure their thoughts were with those most closely affected.

“This event provides a great focus for the town and its surrounding villages and offer young and old alike something fun to do on their doorsteps.

“It also provides a good boost for local businesses by bringing hundreds of people into the town centre.

“It’s been a busy month for events – with the fireworks and Christmas lights and Paisley and Renfrew in the past few weeks also going really well.

“My thanks go out to everybody who came along to any of these events and we hope to see you all back again next year.”

Courtesy of Renfrewshire Council.

DSC_0507 - Mirren Porteous - WMT

Gathering Threads – A Celebration

‘Paisley was the mills and the mills were Paisley’ *

Thanks to the generosity of Mr Marcus Dean, the Anchor Mill Atrium appropriately hosted 200 enthusiastic Renfrewshire school children – a credit to their schools – to celebrate the publication of their ‘Gathering Threads’ anthology.

The school children have been working with local poets: Mo Blake, Kathryn Daly and Tracy Patrick, learning about their local mill heritage, increasing their writing skills, visiting the Paisley Thread Mill Museum, interviewing past mill workers and recording their impressions in poetry, drama and art. Their wonderful writing is published in the ‘Gathering Threads’ anthology. The cover images and internal artwork are the winning pieces from the project’s art competition, judged by the Convenor of Education, Cllr Jacqueline Henry, Margaret Burleigh of the Paisley Thread Mill Museum committee and Caroline Watson, local artist and committee member of Weaving Musical Threads. The ‘Gathering Threads’ project was supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund, All Our Stories fund, Renfrewshire Council Education Department and the arts association, Weaving Musical Threads. The All Our Stories fund was launched last year to support and enable people to explore, share and celebrate their local heritage and the Gathering Threads project was one of the first in the UK to receive a Heritage Lottery Fund All Our Stories grant.

At the start of the ‘Gathering Threads’ project, local poet and workshop leader, Tracy Patrick said; “It’s a fabulous opportunity to explore the history of Paisley’s Thread Mills. There are so many stories to discover, spanning generations of people who worked in the mills and we’re especially thrilled that young people in Renfrewshire will now have the opportunity to engage creatively with that history and preserve it for future generations.”

The celebration in the historic Anchor Mill was a joy to be part of. A selection of the pupils from the Renfrewshire schools that took part in the project: Gallowhill Primary, Glencoats Primary, St. John Ogilvie Primary, St. Mary’s Primary, West Primary, Williamsburgh Primary and Paisley Grammar School, recited their poetry and drama in the Atrium.  Margaret Muir spoke on behalf of the Thread Mill Museum and Cllr Jacqueline Henry – whose own mother worked in the mills, in fact in Anchor Mill itself, and clearly remembers those busy days of Paisley’s industrial heritage – spoke on behalf of Renfrewshire Council Education Department. Every child was presented with a copy of their ‘Gathering Threads’ anthology and a Certificate of Achievement for participation in this very valuable and most enjoyable project.

Further copies of the ‘Gathering Threads’ anthology will be available from the Paisley Thread Mill Museum – which, with added volunteer assistance, for the first time will be able to be open during the winter months every Wednesday and Saturday from 12noon to 4pm.

Photographs are thanks to Weaving Musical Threads and to Brian McGuire and Ian McDonald of
*Margaret McFadden in ‘Mill Memories’ by Evelyn Hood

Old Paisley  

Old Paisley’s women working hard

Making Paisley Proud.

The men getting the easier jobs

And getting more money than the lassies.

The lassies only getting 65 pence a week.

“Nae mare!” they all said.

Thousands of Paisley Mill lassies marching

Oot the gates of old Paisley Mills shouting,

“Come on ladies let’s get a fair pay equal to the lads!”

Then old Paisley’s mills

were working once again in Old Paisley.


by Mirren Porteous

formerly of West Primary School, now S1 pupil at Castlehead Secondary School

Scottish_Gaelic - HLF logo portrait