Thousands of runners turned up in Paisley Town Centre this morning to run the 10k and Fun Run, the annual event is getting bigger each year and we were lucky to have our Photographer David Cameron on the scene to capture the hard work all the runners have put in which accumulated today.
Hawkhead, Paisley News
THE streets of Paisley were filled with thousands of runners (Sunday August 18) competing in the town’s annual 10k Road Race and Fun Run.
A total of 3431 runners took part in the two events, organised by Renfrewshire Leisure.
From serious athletes to fun runners in fancy dress, they pounded the streets around the town.
Both the Paisley 10k and Fun Run were sponsored by sports and outdoors retailer, Decathlon and this year’s official charity partner was the Armed Forces veterans’ charity, Erskine.
There were 1983 people running in the 10k Race and 1448 in the Fun Run.
Many of the fun runners were also sponsored to raise much-needed funds for local charities, clubs and good causes with several entire football teams of youngsters taking part.
This year’s Paisley 10k race had more than £2000 in prize money up for grabs and trophies were presented to boys and girls fun run winners, aged seven and under, eight to 12 years old and 12 to 15 year olds.
The Paisley 10k Race men’s winner was Sean Fontana, from Inverclyde AC with a time of 31 minutes 40 seconds. Second place in the men’s race went to John Bell, from Invercyde AC, with a time of 31 minutes 46 seconds and third was Alasdair McLeod, from Shettleston Harriers with a time of 32 minutes 19 seconds.
The women’s 10k Race winner was Morag Millar, from Central AC with a time of 35 minutes 26 seconds. Second was Gemma Rankin, from Kilbarchan AAC with a time of 35 minutes 47 seconds and third was Lorna Young, from Leeds City AC with a time of 35 minutes 54 seconds.
Chairperson of Renfrewshire Leisure, Councillor Lisa-Marie Hughes said: “Once again the Paisley 10k has attracted a high calibre of athlete along with hundreds of other runners who have been training hard for months.
“And it was great to see so many fun runners of all ages pounding the streets of Paisley with lots of money being raised for various charities and good causes.
“The event is a great day for everyone involved, especially the families who take part in the races, or come along to support the runners.”
Proposals to build four new Early Learning and Childcare Centres and carry out major extensions at three existing centres have been announced by Renfrewshire Council.
The council has submitted planning applications for new centres in Dargavel, Houston, Lochfield in Paisley and Kirklandneuk in Renfrew.
Plans to carry out major extensions at St Margaret’s Early Learning and Childcare Centre in Johnstone and Kilbarchan Community Nursery have also been submitted, alongside proposals to create a bespoke centre for Inchinnan Community Nursery at Inchinnan Primary.
The projects are part of a £14million extension and refurbishment programme to support the expansion of nursery provision in Renfrewshire. It will also help the council meet the Scottish Government’s target of 1140 fully-funded hours of early learning and childcare for all three and four-year-olds and eligible two-year-olds by August 2020.
In 2019, Renfrewshire became the first local authority in Scotland to be rated ‘excellent’ by Education Scotland for its efforts to close the poverty-related attainment gap. The expansion to early learning and childcare is expected to support much of that work.
If the planning applications are approved, work on the new-build centres will begin in January 2020, and the major extensions in March 2020.
Renfrewshire Council Depute Leader and Convener of Education and Children’s Services, Jim Paterson, said: “These new centres and major extensions will ensure we are able to continue providing young children with the best possible start in life once the new expanded 1140 hours are introduced in August 2020.
“We are committed to providing the best learning environments for young children and are driven to maintain quality across all early learning and childcare centres and classes. The work we are proposing will support this, creating bespoke centres and facilities that will help young children in Renfrewshire thrive for years to come.”
The council launched a recruitment drive to support its 1140 Early Learning and Childcare expansion plans in April 2019, with a range of posts set to be advertised before the new expanded hours are introduced in August 2020.
Parents of three and four-year-olds and some eligible two-year-olds will see the number of free early learning and childcare hours they receive increase from 600 to 1140 in August 2020. Ahead of that deadline, eligible children will be offered 1140 ELC where there is space to do so. Parents wishing more information should speak to their local nursery.
The expansion will give parents more flexibility in their choice of nursery and childcare services, meaning they can choose from council, private and volunteer-run nursery classes, centres and childminding. They will also have plenty of choice when accessing their child’s entitlement, including options for 8am-6pm over 50 weeks, mornings or afternoons over 45 weeks, or 6 hours per day over the school year, as well as being able to select their preferred options of nursery or childminding sessions.
There will also be an increase in the number of places commissioned from funded independent and private nurseries.
Children attending a Council or funded private or voluntary nursery centres or classes during lunchtime will also be entitled to a free meal.
Parents and carers should continue to apply to their local nursery for a place for their child. When centres and classes have the capacity to accommodate 1140 hours before August 2020, parents will be contacted directly and asked to select their preferred option.
For more information on 1140 Early Learning and Childcare and our expansion plans, visit www.renfrewshire.gov.uk/1140ELC.
Renfrewshire Council’s approach to finding long-term homes for people at risk of homelessness has received a funding boost from the Scottish Government.
An initial £186,000 from the Scottish Government’s Ending Homelessness Together Fund will be used to expand the council’s Housing First service which reduces the time people spend in temporary accommodation and helps them to sustain settled accommodation.
Renfrewshire was the first council in Scotland to fund a Housing First model and has seen the number of households making homeless applications fall since 2012. The service provides ‘wrap-a-round’ support for people who have previously struggled to maintain tenancies.
Councillor Marie McGurk, Convener of Renfrewshire Council’s Communities, Housing and Planning Policy Board, said: “Caring for the most vulnerable in our communities is one of our top priorities.
“We have a strong focus on preventing homelessness and an excellent track record of supporting those in need. This funding will allow us to increase the tailored support we already provide and continue our efforts to help anyone facing homelessness in Renfrewshire.”
The council received the funding after submitting its Rapid Rehousing Transition Plan to the Scottish Government in December. The plan sets out how the council and its partners will provide people facing homelessness with settled accommodation and appropriate support as quickly as possible and minimise the amount of time they spend in temporary accommodation. Renfrewshire’s plan is still being reviewed by Scottish Government, however the £186,000 funding will allow the Council to expand the service now.
Councillor McGurk added: “We have a number of measures in place to ensure early intervention and support for people facing homelessness.
“Our Homeless Services team works with a range of partners to provide assistance to anyone in housing need, as well as advice on their housing options. We have a range of furnished flats and supported accommodation available, providing people with a place to stay until they are able to move on to settled accommodation. Our Renfrewshire Homelessness Partnership also meets regularly throughout the year to review the local and national picture and consider new initiatives to help those in housing need.
“If you need advice contact our Housing Advice and Homeless Services on 0300 300 0222 or call 0800 121 4466 outside of office hours.”
Four groups from across Renfrewshire are set to receive £50,000 as part of the first wave of applications recommended for approval from a £1.87million fund created by Renfrewshire Council.
Councillors will consider five applications to the Green Spaces, Parks and Play Areas and Villages Investment Fund, totalling £209,088, to help improve and development community green spaces in Renfrewshire.
Upgrading and installing new play equipment has been a key priority for local groups, although the fund does encourage applications for all aspects of green spaces to improve their look, feel and usability.
Applications for the maximum allocation of £50,000 set to be considered are:
- A brand-new zip slide, outdoor gymnasium, skateboard ramps, football goals and junior play area in Howwood Public Park.
- New all-inclusive play equipment chosen by local children in Queen’s Road Play Park in Elderslie.
- An enhanced play area within Glencoats Park as part of the first phase of improvements planned by local group Pals of the Privies.
- New dynamic, exciting play equipment in Skye Crescent Play Park in Glenburn which will be inclusive for all young people.
An application of £9088 from Friends of Knockhill Park will also be considered to install a new expression swing for young parents and carers to use with their little ones, as well as new picnic benches and seating in the park.
Langcraigs Parent Council have been awarded £4875 to establish an all-hours accessible play park within the school grounds which will have a mini football pitch, basketball nets and other playground games.
Councillor Marie McGurk, Convener of Renfrewshire Council’s Communities, Housing and Planning Policy Board, said: “These projects will make a huge difference to the local area if they are approved and we’ll continue to work with local groups to ensure their applications fit the criteria required and will benefit their local community.
“The fund gives people the opportunity to shape the development of their local parks and green spaces and carry out improvements that, using their local knowledge, will be of most benefit to the community.
“If you have an idea which fits the bill, please get in contact with the team and we’ll support you to make your application for future awards from this £1.87million fund.”
The Green Spaces, Parks and Play Areas and Villages Investment Fund aims to regenerate and make physical and environmental improvements to areas across Renfrewshire identified by the local community.
Awards from the fund will assist in bringing in external funding, increase community participation in local areas and encourage the process of transferring assets to local communities.
Each application must show it has consulted the local community to ensure there is a need and desire for the project and that it would improve community life.
£370,000 has been ringfenced from the overall £1.87million fund specifically for investment in Renfrewshire’s villages, through the Villages Investment Fund, and applications must show that they will strengthen the unique identity, heritage and character of village life.
For more information and to find out how to apply, visit www.renfrewshire.gov.uk/greenspacesfund.
Four community groups in Renfrewshire are set to receive a share of over £45,000 in the next wave of funding from Renfrewshire Council’s Community Empowerment Fund.
Councillors will consider applications from groups including The STAR Project and Paisley Opera at the Communities, Housing and Planning Policy Board next Tuesday (20 August).
Applications recommended for approval include a request from The STAR Project for £20,000 to create a new labyrinth in Fountains Gardens, Paisley. A community asset transfer for the labyrinth site is currently underway.
Other applications being considered include a request for £10,000 from the 18th Paisley & District (Coats) Scout Group to carry out a feasibility study to find a suitable location for a new purpose-built Scout group and community facility in Foxbar.
Foxbar Community Garden & Environmental Projects Group has applied for £10,000 to support the development of a business plan to create a community garden and local hub facilities on the site of the demolished St Paul’s Primary in Foxbar.
And Paisley Opera has applied for £6,700 to carry out a community consultation and develop a business plan to create a rehearsal space and Community Hub in the East End of Paisley.
Councillor Marie McGurk, convener of the Communities, Housing and Planning Policy Board, said: “Renfrewshire is a thriving place, full of creative, passionate and innovative people and these project showcase that.
“We launched this fund in 2018 because we wanted to work with community groups and empower them to transform their local areas. I know these projects will make a big difference to their local areas and Renfrewshire if they are approved.”
The £1.5million Community Empowerment Fund provides grants to community groups that want to take over ownership and the running of a publicly owned building or piece of land in their local area through Community Asset Transfer. It is currently in its sixth round of funding, with applications to the seventh round of the fund closing on Tuesday 3 September 2019.
Councillor McGurk added: “I would encourage anyone who is interested in taking ownership of a public building or piece of land in their local area and transforming it to apply to the Community Empowerment Fund. Your project could change the lives of people in your community.”
For more information and to find out how to apply to the Community Empowerment Fund, visit http://www.renfrewshire.gov.uk/CommunityEmpowermentFund.
Residents who want to make a difference in their communities are being encouraged to join their local Community Council.
Elections to Community Councils across Renfrewshire open today (Monday 12 August).
Renfrewshire has 21 active Community Councils, with Charleston, Gallowhill, Glenburn and Hunterhill not currently having any Community Council representation.
Elections will only take place for Renfrewshire’s active Community Councils, however, anyone who is interested in setting up a group in one of the four areas currently without representation should contact Renfrewshire Council.
Residents must be aged 16 or over, live in the Community Council area and be registered to vote to be eligible to stand in the elections.
Renfrewshire Council Leader Iain Nicolson said: “Community Councils can be the voice of our local people and an important part of community life in Renfrewshire.
“They can help improve their community and public services as well as the quality of life in their areas by generating community spirit, resilience and pride.
“If you live in an area that does not currently have a Community Council and would like help establishing a group, please get in touch for advice and support.
“I would encourage anyone who wants to get involved in their local area to put themselves forward for the Community Council elections. This is a fantastic opportunity to make a difference in your local community.”
The Community Council elections close on Friday 13 September 2019, with the first meeting of each group taking place in October.
To join your Community Council, visit www.renfrewshire.gov.uk/ccelections, download a nomination form and send the completed form to Anne McNaughton, Senior Committee Services Officer, Finance & Resources, Renfrewshire Council, Renfrewshire House, Cotton Street, Paisley, PA1 1TR.
For more information about Community Councils or if you are interested in helping establish a Community Council in Charleston, Gallowhill, Glenburn or Hunterhill, call Senior Committee Services Officer Anne McNaughton on 0141 618 7104 or email email@example.com
Intrepid members of the public are being given the chance to experience a piece of medieval archaeology up close in celebration of Renfrewshire’s history and heritage.
To mark Doors Open Days 2019, experts from Guard Archaeology will lead guided tours of the historic Abbey Drain on Saturday 7 and Sunday 8 September.
The expedition down the drain follows on from the success of the tours as part of Doors Open Days 2018 – and as places on the tours will be in high demand, spaces will be allocated via a ballot.
The 100m long underground passageway, thought to be more than 700 years old, was unearthed in the 19th century and rediscovered in the 1990s.
This summer, an eight-week excavation – the Big Dig – unearthed a well-preserved 14th century archway marking where and how the drain met the River Cart, around three metres from the banks of the present-day river.
Archaeologists can now pinpoint the end of the drain and the boundary wall of the monastery, which informs what we already know about the infrastructure and layout of medieval Paisley.
The dig was managed by Renfrewshire Council, run by Guard Archaeology with help from Renfrewshire Local History Forum volunteers, and supported by funding from the National Lottery Heritage Fund and Historic Environment Scotland.
Renfrewshire’s Provost Lorraine Cameron said: “The Abbey Drain tour is a very exciting opportunity for anyone interested in Paisley’s architecture, archaeology and heritage to experience a medieval structure first-hand.
“I’ve been into the inner workings of the drain myself and it was a fascinating experience.
“There will be plenty going on all over Renfrewshire as part of Doors Open Days. I would encourage people of all ages to get out and about across the weekend and support local businesses while learning more about our heritage and culture.”
To be in with a chance of going down the drain, visit https://paisley.is/listing/win-a-tour-of-the-great-medieval-drain-in-paisleys-abbey-close/ and fill out the ballot form. The ballot will close on Friday 23 August.
Tours will run between 10am and 4.30pm on both Saturday 7 and Sunday 8 September.
Participants must be aged 12 or above.
Pupils from Paisley Grammar and Johnstone High schools are celebrating after receiving As in their exam results.
Aiming for careers in STEM, law and product design, the students were thrilled their hard work paid off.
More than 4,000 Renfrewshire pupils completed SQA courses this year and results show another successful year.
Baillie Kerr, 18, from Johnstone High, is heading off to study at Glasgow University after gaining As in Advanced Higher Mathematics and Higher Psychology. She said: “I want to be a counsellor after I finish university. I know people who suffer from poor mental health and I want to change perceptions about mental wellbeing.”
Budding product designer, Ross Allan, 17, from Paisley Grammar, is heading to university next month. He said: “I needed to get three As and one B to get in and study product design at Strathclyde University. I’m so proud of what I achieved.
“Solving problems is a huge part of product design and I like that it is a creative job with practical implications.”
Millie Spence, 16, from Johnstone High, is also looking to study product design. She said: “I would prefer not to work behind at desk all day. I’m going to go to university after I finish S6.”
Looking forward to a career as a radiotherapist, Stephanie Tavendale, 15, from Johnstone High, said; “One of my favourite subjects is physics and I want to use what I learn to help people with cancer.”
Holly Hamilton, 16, from Paisley Grammar, is also interested in STEM subjects. She said: “I really enjoy science subjects and maths. I haven’t yet decided exactly what I want to study at university, but it’s likely to be a STEM subject.”
After being introduced to criminal cases during his work experience, Danny McNeill, 16, from Paisley Grammar, is on his way to become a lawyer. He said: ““I really enjoyed watching how lawyers presented their case at court and the increasing use of video and audio evidence.”
Joshua Campbell, 16, from Paisley Grammar, also wants to study law, but also finds sound engineering to be fun. He said: “I first started volunteering as a sound technician for my school plays and now I also support the Renfrewshire Schools Orchestra. It has made me consider if I want to do it as a career instead of business law, but I have still to decide. I will not be going to university for another year or two.”
With ambitious to teach primary school children, Jemma English, 15, from Paisley Grammar, isn’t sure what path she will take to become one but will be going to university. She said: “I have always wanted to be a primary school teacher. I like being hands-on and helping children learn through being creative.”
Mabel Wylie, 16, Ellie McGarry, 17, and Lewis Deighan, 15, all from Johnstone High, are not ready to choose what they will study at university. Mabel said: “I will probably study maths at university and go onto work in equity analysis, but I am not sure yet. I have a year to decide.”
Headteachers Janice Levens, Paisley Grammar, and Lynne Hollywood, Johnstone High, were equally delighted with the results.
Janice said: “I am absolutely delighted for those pupils who achieved the successes they were looking for today. This is a stressful day for teachers and families as well as for the pupils opening their exam results, so it’s a huge relief to see them achieve their exam goals. Teachers and pupils have worked so hard all year and it’s a great feeling when things work out well. There will of course be pupils who are not feeling as pleased, but it’s all about learning from what we have achieved and building on that to move to bigger and better things.”
Lynne added: “Baillie, Ellie, Mabel, Millie and Stephanie have done a brilliant job and we are delighted that all their hard work and dedication has paid off with these fantastic sets of results. All year we have been impressed with their determination and commitment to their studies and felt sure that this would be rewarded with outstanding grades – we couldn’t be prouder of them. I’d like to thank the Johnstone High School staff who go the extra mile to prepare the pupils for the SQA exams, and also a huge thanks to our very supportive parents who work so closely with us for the benefit of our students.
“I am, of course, extremely proud of all the Johnstone High School pupils who worked hard all year through their National and Higher courses and exams. The SQA envelope through the door is the recognition of everything they have achieved during their 11 or 12 years of formal education in Renfrewshire. Whether our young people go to university, college, a job or an apprenticeship, these qualifications alongside the skills and values they have learned will open the door to the next stage of their lives. Whatever our young people go on to do next, I am confident that they will be successful and continue to be a credit to their family and local community.”
For support and advice on exam results, call the Skills Development Scotland helpline on 0808 100 8000.
From medieval underground structures and buildings steeped in history, to allotments, fire stations and music schools, there will be plenty to celebrate about Renfrewshire at Doors Open Days (link is to 2012 photos enjoy) 2019.
On Saturday 7 and Sunday 8 September, venues all over Renfrewshire – many of which do not normally allow access to what’s going on behind the scenes – will throw open their doors and invite people to delve deeper into their history.
Doors Open Days is Scotland’s largest free festival that celebrates heritage and the built environment, old and new. This year marks the 30th anniversary of Doors Open Day nationally, with more than 1000 buildings set to open across the country.
This year in Renfrewshire, more than 50 venues will welcome people of all ages across the weekend.
Many of the old Doors Open Days favourites – including Sma’ Shot Cottages and Paisley Abbey – are getting involved again this year, and a few new venues have stepped up to share their stories.
There will also be the opportunity to see inside Paisley’s medieval Abbey Drain. Look out for more detail on that in the coming weeks.
Renfrewshire Provost Lorraine Cameron is encouraging people of all ages to get involved across the weekend.
Provost Cameron said: “We’re so lucky here in Renfrewshire to have such a fantastic array of beautiful, historic buildings, but we don’t often get the chance to see what goes on behind the scenes.
“Doors Open Days is a great opportunity for people of all ages to find out more about these buildings and to hear stories about our culture and heritage which will help inform our future.
“Venues have organised a brilliant range of activities across the weekend and learning will definitely be fun.
“Major events like this are great for the local economy as they get people out and about and spending money with local traders.
“We should be very proud of our history and heritage here in Renfrewshire and I hope that people of all ages take time out to get involved.”
Activities will be taking place in Paisley, Renfrew, Linwood, Johnstone, Lochwinnoch, Kilbarchan, Bridge of Weir, Houston, Erskine and Inchinnan.
Doors Open Days is coordinated nationally by the Scottish Civic Trust and is part of European Heritage Days supported by Historic Environment Scotland.
A full list of venues can be viewed online at www.paisley.is