Ralston, Paisley News

sma shot day 2021

Paisley’s annual Sma’ Shot Day celebrations will once again be marked with a programme of online events to commemorate the historic victory of local weavers.

This year’s online event will take place on Saturday 3 July – the time when the weavers and their families would traditionally take their holidays.

Last year’s digital Sma’ Shot Day was a huge success and this year looks set to be even better with a dynamic and varied programme of online performances planned to mark this special day in the town’s calendar.

The move to take the event online for 2021 is in response to the current COVID-19 pandemic, to ensure celebrations can still take place in adherence with national guidance.

The traditional Sma’ Shot holiday in Paisley takes its name from a famous dispute between the local shawl weavers and manufacturers in the 19th century. In 1856, following a long dispute, the manufacturers backed down and an agreement was reached to pay for the Sma’ Shot, the invisible stitch which bound the Paisley shawls, with a new table of prices published on 1 July 1856.

The Burning of the Cork – the centrepiece of Sma’ Shot Day celebrations is back for 2021. People can log on to watch the spectacle that is the burning effigy and enjoy a vibrant, colourful and dynamic telling of the ‘cork’ and ‘weavers’ story captured on film featuring captivating performances lead by aerial performance company, All or Nothing, in partnership with PACE, Right2Dance and Jennifer Scott Dancers.

Other programme highlights include The Charleston Drum Rally film, funded by Renfrewshire Council’s TH.CARS2 programme, which will shine a light on another historic element of the day’s celebrations. Loud n Proud will be showcasing a short film version of their production, ‘Sma’ Shot, the Musical’, reimagining this famous point in Paisley’s history, in advance of the extended live musical show which will follow later this year.

The Makers Market is also back and online for 2021. Delivered in partnership with Incube – people will be able to browse and buy a variety of unique gifts and items handmade by local makers including Camper Plants, Pottle Jewellery and Karen Hanvidge Ceramics.

A new immersive walking tour app, Paisley Radicals Catalysts for Change, is also being launched to coincide with Sma’ Shot Day, acknowledging Paisley’s role in Scotland’s Radical Wars. Part radio play, part mindfulness app and part walking tour the app, produced by Civil Disobedience and Inner Ear, will address the events leading up to and including the Radical War of 1820. Part of the ‘Future Paisley’ programme, the ‘Paisley Radicals’ project is a joint production between Renfrewshire Council, with support from the 1820 Society and Paisley & District University of the Third Age (U3A); and the Museums team.

Renfrewshire’s Provost, Lorraine Cameron, said: “Sma’ Shot Day is always one of the highlights of the annual events calendar, representing an important part of Paisley’s heritage. Last year’s online event was a massive success and this year’s looks to be even better with the welcome return of the signature Burning of the Cork.

“The online programme will give everyone plenty of opportunities to participate and learn more about this important part of the town’s history. I for one will be looking forward to logging on and getting involved in the fun on the day.”

More information on the full programme will be released in the coming weeks.

THE diverse cultures of different ethnic groups in Renfrewshire are being celebrated with a series of online events and creative workshops.

The activities – organised by Renfrewshire’s Ethnic Communities Cultural Steering Group – are being staged as part of the national Refugee Week, between June 14 and June 20.

This year’s programme features music, film, food workshops, a photography competition, storytelling and a pen pal project that encourages children from The African School of Cultures to make a connection with Refugee communities.

The Steering Group is made up of leading cultural organisations, community members, Third Sector organisations and academic partners from across Renfrewshire.

The group developed from the work carried out last year to produce a programme of events for Black History Month, called Our Culture, Our Future.

They include Engage Renfrewshire, Jambo! Radio, Pachedu, University of the West of Scotland, Action for Culture and Ethics, The School of African Cultures, Inspiring Families and Renfrewshire Leisure’s Cultural Services.

Regine Bews, from the School of African Cultures said: “It’s important for everyone in Renfrewshire to celebrate Refugee Week

“It is a time to remember that many ethnic communities across the world at one point or another have sought refuge in other countries.

“This is also the right time to acknowledge and value the presence and contributions of ethnic communities and enable community cohesion, celebrate and showcase diversity across Renfrewshire.

“The cultures of ethnic communities in Renfrewshire could sometimes be claimed by others to be intimidating because have brighter colours, spicier flavours, different accents, louder songs and dances.

“Somehow, we will be surprised to find out that our cultures have similarities, our battles are similar and we share the same humanity.

“The ethnic Communities in Renfrewshire will benefit from this event highlighting their cultural activities as it is a great way to show their contributions, presence and integration in Renfrewshire.”

Councillor Lisa-Marie Hughes, Chair of Renfrewshire Leisure said: “When people from the many diverse backgrounds in Renfrewshire come together, it connects communities and creates a rich tapestry of creativity and artistry. We are delighted to be working with the organisations on the Ethnic Communities Cultural Steering Group to deliver such an exciting program.

“Renfrewshire’s culture is enhanced by the traditions and skills refugees and migrant communities bring and we are looking forward to celebrating their contribution during Refugee Week.’

Events planned for Refugee Week include a film being shown on Ren TV – Renfrewshire Leisure’s online TV channel – at 7pm on June 17 called Musicians in Exile – Always On The Move. The film explores how refugees created new music during lockdown and how much that meant to them.

The Sharing Food Experiences Workshop is an event on Zoom between 2pm and 3pm on June 19. It brings together food and poetry and will be led by poet Sean Wai Keung.

On June 16, at 7pm, Ren TV features a storytelling session by Tawona Sithole, who is a playwright and poet who uses creativity-based learning to make connections with other people. This is part of Pachedu’s Cultural Café.

The photography competition being organised by the University of the West of Scotland is based around the theme of ‘We Cannot Walk Alone’. It’s open to people of all ages and entries to the UWS

Musicians from refugee communities in Renfrewshire and beyond will perform at Jambo! Radio’s social distancing studio on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Instagram on June 18 and 19 between 5pm and 8pm.

And during Refugee Week the School of African Studies is launching their Pen Pal Project, which connects children involved in the group with children from migrant communities throughout Scotland.

Go to www.renfrewshireleisure.com/refugee-week for more details about online events taking place, in Renfrewshire during Refugee Week.

We’re getting summer underway in Paisley town centre with our free family  adventure, BRICKLIVE’s Animal Paradise! 

Running from Saturday 26th June until Sunday 15th August, this interactive trail  features hand-built brick endangered animal statues. 

We’re sure your mini explorers will have a great expedition hunting down these  stunning animals across ice caps, jungles, rivers and forests, all in the heart of Paisley  town centre! 

What will our intrepid voyagers find first – the Bengal Tiger, the Macaws, the Dolphin  or the Snow Leopard? 

Find all 15 models for your chance to enter our free prize draw! 

What better way to get the whole family out and about for the day with this fun, free  activity! 

Colette Cardosi, Chair of Paisley First, said: “It’s been a tough year for everyone so  we’re happy to be able to give everyone something to look forward to this summer. 

“BRICKLIVE Animal Paradise is made up of hand-built brick endangered animal  models and has been devised to entertain whilst educating children and families  about environmental issues and the importance of conservation and biodiversity. 

“So, if you are looking for a free day out and something fun to do with all the family  this summer, head to Paisley!” 

Trail leaflets will be available from the leaflet racks in both the Piazza Shopping  Centre and also the Paisley Centre as well as town centre businesses and the Paisley  First office at 1 County Place – just opposite Paisley Gilmour Street train station. 

Once you’ve had fun with our trail, we have a wide range of great shops and an  abundance of fantastic food and drink venues, catering to every taste and budget,  where you can have a well-earned rest! 

Plus, Paisley is Paw Friendly so no need to leave your four-legged friend at home! Love the school summer holidays? Love Paisley!

Councillors have given the go-ahead for residents to be asked their views on an ambitious and far-reaching ten-year £100m transformation of council housing.

Renfrewshire Council last year agreed to invest the sum in a housing-led regeneration and renewal programme to deliver modern, high-quality, energy-efficient, affordable council housing.

Members of the council’s Communities, Housing and Planning Board today gave the green light for officers to roll out a detailed consultation over the months ahead.

Residents and owners in eight areas will now be invited to give their views on the plans – which include investment in existing properties and outdoor areas, as well as new-build housing.

The eight areas in the first phase of the programme are: Auchentorlie Quadrant, Howard Street, Waverley Road, Thrushcraigs, Springbank Road and the Broomlands area all, Paisley; as well as the Moorpark area in Renfrew and the Howwood Road area in Johnstone.

The proposals were created following a detailed assessment of the council’s existing housing stock and aim to improve buildings and external areas such as closes, back courts and bin stores, and to bring down energy bills by making homes more energy-efficient.

The proposals could involve the demolition of buildings in four of the areas, with plans being developed for around 300 new-build council homes in their place.

Residents and owners in the properties identified in the proposals have already received a letter from the council to make them aware, and further communication will follow next week with details of how they can get involved in the consultation.

The planned consultation would also include a wider conversation with residents in those areas about what they want from them.

That will help inform a neighbourhood place plan for each area covering how the council and its partners can work together to deliver services could better meet the needs of residents.

Councillor Marie McGurk, convener of the Communities, Housing and Planning Board, said: “This planned investment could deliver a transformation – not just of the quality of council housing in Renfrewshire, but of the wider environment around them.

“We know improving the quality of housing improves people’s quality of life, health and well-being and this will do that, while also making council estates and services easier to manage and maintain.

“It will also be central to the area’s economic and social recovery from the pandemic – by creating construction jobs for local residents and traders – while promoting Renfrewshire as a great place to live.

“We would stress that at this stage, all we are putting forward are proposals – if approved, council staff will be in touch with all residents and owners to get their views on the plans and to make sure all voices are heard before any final decisions are made.

“That conversation will be about more than housing – it will take in what residents want from the future of their areas, so I would encourage everyone affected to take part.”

Young people returning to work are being urged to check if they are eligible for Job Start Payment.

Over 1,000 young people have already benefited from this support since it launched in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic. That’s more than £277,000 invested so far in helping those whose job prospects have been hardest hit over the past year.

Many businesses will be recruiting again as restrictions lessen in many local authority areas, and 16-24 year olds beginning or returning to work may be eligible for money to help with the cost of starting a new job.

Job Start Payment is now £252.50, or £404 if the applicant has children and is available to young people who have been on certain benefits for six months or more. Money can be spent on anything they need including travel costs, new clothes or childcare.

Figures released today cover the period from 17 August 2020, when Job Start Payment launched, to 31 March 2021.

Cabinet Secretary for Social Security Shirley-Anne Somerville said:

“We don’t want the costs of starting a new job to be what stops people taking up opportunities. COVID-19 has had a major impact on the job market and it has had a significant impact on prospects for many young people.

“As we emerge from lockdown, I strongly encourage any young people who have recently started a new job or about to start a new job to check if they are eligible for Job Start Payment and apply now.”

People can apply for Job Start Payment for up to three months after their start date.

An independent report has praised Renfrewshire Council’s work to close the poverty-related attainment gap between the least and most deprived children and young people over the past five years.

The Education Scotland five-year impact report, which will be put in front of councillors at the next Education and Children’s Services Policy Board on Thursday 21 May, said that Renfrewshire schools had made significant progress in raising attainment for pupils living in the most deprived areas.


Key to their success is how schools and the central education team analyse data to direct teaching and evidence-based programmes to where they will make the most impact to pupils.

Attainment in literacy and numeracy continues to improve and the area’s schools continue to have higher attainment rates than the national average.

Renfrewshire’s poverty-related attainment gap has reduced for pupils in all year groups over the past five years, with more young people living in the most deprived areas heading into positive destinations when they leave school.

The report also praised the professional learning for teachers and classroom assistants, classing it as sector leading.

Councillor Jim Paterson, the council’s education convener, said: “Renfrewshire continues to build on its excellent progress on closing the poverty-related attainment gap while also improving attainment for all. This report highlights the positive outcomes we have achieved as part of our Scottish Attainment Challenge journey over the past five years. It’s welcome news to have it confirmed that we are on the right track.

“We have made significant investments into high-quality professional development programmes for our teaching and support staff as well as working with Stanford and Strathclyde universities to evaluate our evidence-based literacy and numeracy programmes. This has enabled us to develop high-quality learning and teaching that has led to improved attainment and achievement in all our schools.

“A huge part of our success has been prioritising the health and wellbeing of all pupils, and the work we have put in over the years has been pivotal to how we are supporting children and young people to recover for the pandemic.

“Ultimately, our use of data to assess what is working, to build on evidence-based programmes, to provide staff with high-quality professional development, and our work with partners has made these improvements in attainment possible.”

If you need your wheelie bin emptied a bit sooner than what the council are willing to uplift it then give us a call.We offer great rates and fast service for getting your wheelie bin emptied.

Our charge for household wheelie bin uplift in Glasgow are:

We have a minimum call-out charge of £30

So 1 wheelie-bin is £30 (because of the minimum call out charge)

2 x wheelie bins £40
3 x wheelie bins £60
4 x wheelie bins £80
5 x wheelie bins £100

We can offer a daily, weekly, fortnightly, four-weekly service or feel free to call us as and when required and we’ll be more than happy to assist.

New benefit to tackle child poverty pays out £3.6 million since February.

A total of 3.010 Scottish Child Payments have been made in Renfrewshire since its launch.

The benefit, which is unique to Scotland, is intended to help low-income families with the costs of raising a child. It gives qualifying parents and carers £40 every four weeks for each child under six.

A total of 92% of the applications processed have been approved, and payments started in February.

Applications were received from people living in all 32 local authorities in Scotland, including 3,460 from Renfrewshire.

By end of March, 3,010 payments were made – meaning a total of £113,080 has been paid to applicants from Renfrewshire.

Across Scotland, an estimated 78,775 children have already benefitted from Scottish Child Payment. More than £3.6 million has been paid out overall.

Parents and carers are able to apply for all eligible children in their household in a single application and can also apply for Best Start Grants and Best Start Foods at the same time.

Scottish Child Payment is in addition to the UK wide Child Benefit.

Cabinet Secretary for Social Security Shirley-Anne Somerville said:

“It is great to see so many families benefitting from the Scottish Child Payment and that it is making a positive impact on the lives of so many children.  We are working hard to tackle child poverty and it is fantastic to see the number of households being supported so quickly after the payment’s launch.

“It is a benefit unique to Scotland within the UK, and has been hailed as a potential ‘game-changer’ in the fight against child poverty.

“It shows how, with the welfare powers we have gained, we are making a real, positive difference to the lives of young people and their families, boosting the life chances of children across the country.”


Nationally, more than 104,000 applications were made between 9 November 2020 and 31 March 2021.

To get advice on what benefits may be available ,parents and carers can access free, confidential advice through Money Talk Team. Visit Parentclub.scot to find out more.

Full details are available to view at MyGov.scot

Kenneth Keegan would like to say that the service room at the parlour room is open for funeral services, because of this, Kenneth Keegan Funeral Services have developed a new funeral service they can offer to make funerals more affordable. The “Funeral Home Farewell” see brochures attached for more information.

Communities in Renfrewshire are set to benefit from a further half a million pounds investment in local green spaces, sports facilities and play areas thanks to Renfrewshire Council’s Green Spaces, Parks and Play Areas and Villages Investment Fund.

Working in partnership with the Council, community groups have been submitting their ideas to improve facilities across the region for the benefit of young people, the local environment and the heritage of local villages.

The latest projects recommended for approval include upgraded tennis courts and a brand-new Multi-Use Games Area (MUGA) in Langbank, a new outdoor gym in Ferguslie Park Gardens and a brand-new community park in Spateston.

Play parks in Elderslie, Lochwinnoch, Houston and Paisley are also set for improvements should they be approved, while a new shelter in Howwood Park and upgrades to the sensory garden in Maxwellton Park are also on the table.

Also put forward for investment are two environmental projects which would see the Tuecheen Ancient Woods in Inchinnan and the Rossland Circle in Bishopton purchased by community groups and developed into community green spaces for residents and visitors to enjoy.

A total of ten projects from communities across Renfrewshire have been recommended for approval with the potential funding totalling £522,466.

Councillor Marie McGurk, Convener of Renfrewshire Council’s Communities, Housing and Planning Policy Board, said: “This fund has been fantastic way for local community groups to make a real, visible difference to their local area and we have already supported 32 projects with more than £700,000 of investment.

“The funded projects are already having such a positive impact on our communities by protecting the local environment and enhancing the play opportunities available for our young people.

“I’m looking forward to considering the latest projects at our forthcoming board meeting next week.”

Three projects have been awarded £5,000 through delegated authority and will see improvements made to Kilbarchan Community Garden, a new boundary fence for St Mirren YFC to protect the playing fields and a bank of gardening tools provided to the West End Growing Grounds to ensure everyone has access to equipment regardless of financial circumstances.

Councillors will consider the other projects at the meeting of the Communities, Housing and Planning Policy Board on Tuesday 18 May.

For more information on the fund, visit www.renfrewshire.gov.uk/GreenSpacesFund.

Date confirmed following Covid-19 restrictions update by Scottish Government

Indoor fitness classes run by Renfrewshire Leisure will restart from May 17th, it has been confirmed today.


The Scottish Government has stated that indoor group exercise will once again be allowed when the region drops into Level Two of Covid-19 restrictions.

A programme of 119 weekly classes – operated in line with all public health guidance – will begin across Renfrewshire Leisure’s venues from next Monday, with 3,852 slots available for booking each week.


The timetable includes Vitality and new Easy Exercise classes designed to give people living with medical conditions, older adults and those just starting out the greatest support to get active to improve their physical and mental health.


A number of outdoor exercise classes – which have proven incredibly popular while indoor group sessions have not been allowed – will continue at ON-X in Linwood.


Fitness class bookings can be made from tomorrow (Wednesday, May 12th) via www.renfrewshireleisure.com, where full timetable details are also available. All classes must be pre-booked.


Measures in place to tackle the Covid-19 pandemic in the region means that Monday will be the first time since October that indoor group exercise has been allowed.


Mark Tokeley, Head of Leisure and Community Services at Renfrewshire Leisure, said: “We know that our indoor classes have been massively missed and that many people cannot wait to get back – and we are very much looking forward to welcoming them. Our team is ready to support them in returning to a regular exercise programme. This is an exciting step for us all and we expect uptake to be extremely positive.


“In every element of our recovery from the impact of Covid-19, the safety of our customers and staff is our priority. People should rest assured that we are doing all we can to protect everyone’s health while creating great opportunities to improve the wellbeing of the region’s residents at this critical time, allowing them to return to activities they really enjoy. Hygiene and social distancing measures are in place at all venues.”


Swimming lessons will restart from the end of the month, with plans for a phased return currently being finalised.


Classes at Lagoon Leisure Centre in Paisley and Renfrew Sports Centre will run in tandem with mass vaccinations centres being operated at each site at the request of Renfrewshire Council. These will have separate entrance and exit points.


Renfrewshire Leisure’s gyms and swimming pools reopened for individual exercise and family swims – alongside its libraries and heritage centre – on April 26th.


An extensive library of exercise content also remains available online.


Regular updates on all services – both in-person and digitally – will be posted via Renfrewshire Leisure’s website and social media.