kate humble

THE malls will be alive to the sound of birdsong this weekend in a bid to make shoppers feel happier.

The unusual move by intu Braehead shopping centre to play the springtime sounds of birds tweeting away in the central atrium comes after new research revealed four out of five Scots say they feel happy when they hear the sound of birdsong.

A special 12-feet high Tweet Tree with models of different species of birds perched on the branches will be created in the middle of the shopping mall, on Friday and Saturday, May 24 and 25.

And from the tree, shoppers will hear the sounds of the country’s ten greatest songbirds being played, including the blackbird, nightingale, robin, cuckoo, woodpigeon, blue tit and wren chirping away.

The soothing birdsong soundtrack was created by BAFTA-winning ambient music producer, Laurence Love Greed and the idea is backed by naturalist Kate Humble.

kate humble

Kate said: “Scientific studies undertaken last year demonstrated that contact with nature – trees, seeing the sky, listening to birds singing – has a hugely beneficial impact on our mental wellbeing.

“So many people shut out the natural sounds around them by wearing headphones to listen to music, but they are denying themselves the wonderful effects nature can have on our mental health.

“So I love this initiative from intu to reconnect millions of people with the wonder of birdsong, the most beautiful and beneficial music of all!”

The research on the effect birdsong has on people also revealed that almost one in ten (eight per cent) haven’t heard a bird sing this Spring – and more than a third of adults (36 per cent) say they hear less birds now than they did ten years ago.

The study, conducted on behalf of intu, marks the launch of a new initiative by the shopping centre brand to reconnect people with the wonder of birdsong.

The initiative to reconnect people with the sounds of nature comes as nearly three in four Scots (74 per cent) say listening to birds singing helps them relax and 68 per cent say it makes them feel less stressed.

Almost a third (30 per cent) say it helps them to work or study, but everyday life is becoming noisier with one in three (34 per cent) worried they are losing touch with nature.

The research showed that 43 per cent of 18-24 year olds wear headphones everyday and 37 per cent regularly wear them outdoors making them deaf to the sounds of nature.

Marketing manager at intu Braehead, David Lyon said: “We’re bringing the sounds of the great outdoors into our centres to encourage our shoppers to reconnect with nature.

“We work really hard to create experiences that will bring a smile to the faces of our customers, and knowing that birdsong is proven to make people happier, we hope our Tweet Tree will bring joy to our shoppers and help them leave happier than when they arrived.”

The birdsong soundscapes will be played at other intu shopping centres around the country.

The initiative is the latest from intu to encourage shoppers to engage with nature, following the launch of Big Bugs on Tour with Chris Packham last year which has seen 12 giant bug models tour its centres.


Several thousand of the world’s best pipers and drummers today turned Paisley into a sea of tartan as the town hosted one of piping’s biggest and most prestigious events.


The British Pipe Band Championships saw huge crowds flock to the town’s St James Playing Fields for the first of the five annual ‘majors’ in the piping calendar.


A total of 123 bands from across the UK and Ireland took part across the day and in the spectacular final march-past, with individual competitors from as far afield as the USA, Denmark and Belgium.

The big winners on the day were the St.Laurence O’Toole Pipe Band who picked up the top prize in the prestigious Grade One competition

Local interest on the day included the Johnstone, Kilbarchan and Renfrewshire Schools Pipe bands.


Visitors enjoyed a day of free family entertainment including a Highland Games competition with caber-tossing and a Scottish Open Strongman contest featuring World’s Strongest Man competitors.

The event was organised by Renfrewshire Council and the Royal Scottish Pipe Band Association. This was the fourth year the championships have taken place in Paisley – with the area contracted to continue to host until 2021.

Previous events had generated more than £300k for the local economy, with half the attendees visitors to Renfrewshire and 7% from outwith Scotland.

Free transport had been organised to and from the event site in partnership with bus firm McGill’s.

Renfrewshire Council leader Iain Nicolson said: “We were delighted to welcome the British Pipe Band Championships to Paisley for another year of what has been a really successful partnership.

“Hosting an international event like this generates a massive economic boost for the area and brings huge volumes of footfall into the town. It also helps further cement Paisley and Renfrewshire’s place as one of Scotland’s premier destinations for major events.”

Ian Embelton, chief executive of the Royal Scottish Pipe Band Association, added: “The British Championships are the first of our five major championships taking place throughout the summer and we saw a top-class display of piping and drumming from the world’s best.

“Once again, the people of Renfrewshire came out in numbers to support the event – Paisley is a great location and host venue, and we look forward to continuing our partnership with the town over the next two years.”


Thousands of people soaked up the sound and spectacle of the world’s best pipe bands – as the British Pipe Band Championships takes place in Paisley today.


The event – one of world piping’s biggest events – has attracted a huge crowd to the town’s St James Playing Fields to see pipers from as far afield as the USA, Belgium and Denmark.

Visitors also enjoyed a day of free family entertainment laid on by organisers Renfrewshire Council.

Provost Cameron with pupils from Linwood, Gleniffer and Johnstone High Schools and members of Pride Paisley

Today (Friday 17 May) the rainbow flag was raised outside Renfrewshire House for the first time, to mark the International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia.

Provost Cameron with pupils from Linwood, Gleniffer and Johnstone High Schools and members of Pride Paisley

The International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia was created in 2004 to raise awareness of the violence, discrimination and repression of LGBTQI+ communities worldwide.

The date of 17 May was specifically chosen to commemorate the World Health Organisation’s decision in 1990 to declassify homosexuality as a mental disorder.

Pupils from Johnstone High School's Umbrella Club

Provost Lorraine Cameron was joined by members of the local LGBTQI+ community to mark this special occasion with pupils from local schools also in attendance.

Poems by LGBT Poet Laureate, Trudy Howson, were read before Provost Cameron and pupils from Glencoats Primary School raised the rainbow flag for the first time.

Provost Cameron said: “In Renfrewshire this is the beginning of a journey to raise awareness of the hatred and intolerance still faced by many across the world.

“By raising the rainbow flag, a symbol of the LGBTQI+ community, we hope to highlight that Renfrewshire is an inclusive and caring community and everyone is welcome and respected here, regardless of their sexual orientations or gender identities.”



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So honoured to be a finalist for

*Makeup Artist of the Year, in the acclaimed Scottish Beauty Industry Awards

*Feature AND editorial spread in Tie the Knot magazine and

*Beauty expert interview in Mill magazine!!!

Not to mention my own wedding coming up in October 2019.

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Terms and Conditions

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BPBC Paisley MFG

Paisley is preparing to welcome an invasion from a tartan army this weekend when 4,000 pipers and drummers descend on the town for one of world piping’s biggest events.


The British Pipe Band Championships are at the St James Playing Fields on Saturday from 10am until 7pm – with a day of free family entertainment laid on.

BPBC Paisley MFG

The event – the first of piping’s five summer ‘majors’ and second-only in size to the Worlds – will feature 123 bands from across the UK and Ireland, and drum and pipe majors from as far afield as the USA, Denmark and Belgium.

Scottish Power Win BPBC MFG

For the first time the event will feature a Highland Games competition and Scottish Open Strongman contest featuring World’s Strongest Man competitors – including the chance for visitors to test their own strength.

Other free events include Highland dancing, a food village with bar, and family entertainment.

BPBC Paisley MFG

Event organisers Renfrewshire Council and the Royal Scottish Pipe Band Association have also teamed up with McGill’s Buses to transport spectators to and from the event – free of charge.

This year’s event chieftain will be poet Brian Whittingham, the Tannahill Makar for Renfrewshire. He said: “This will be the first time I’ve attended the Championships and it’s an honour to be have been asked to be Chieftain.

“I’m sure the sight and sound of so many world-class pipe bands will make for a tremendous experience. It’s fantastic we’re able to welcome thousands of visitors to Renfrewshire for such a prestigious event and I know they’ll enjoy the welcome they receive.”

Scottish Power Win BPBC MFG

Local interest on the day includes the Johnstone Pipe Band, Kilbarchan Pipe Band and the Renfrewshire Schools Pipe Band.

Visitors should note there will be no public parking at the event. McGill’s will run the shuttle buses from Paisley Gilmour Street station, West College Scotland and Swift Parking on Greenhill Road, with the latter two offering free event parking.

Other transport options include getting the train to Paisley St James station, which is a short walk from the event site, or a bus to Paisley town centre, and transferring to the free shuttle.

Scottish Power Win BPBC MFG

This is the fourth year the championships have taken place in Paisley – with the area contracted to continue to host until 2021.

Last year’s event attracted 17,000 attendees and generated more than £300k for the local economy, with half the attendees visitors to Renfrewshire and 7% from outwith Scotland.

For more information on the day – including running order and travel info – see www.paisley.is

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paisley pirates

Paisley Pirates may be enjoying a well-earned break from their on–ice activities after a season which ended when they won the national playoff title for the very first time, but off the ice the club and its supporters are continuing to work hard to ensure that the club continues to flourish.

paisley pirates

“Yes, it’s a busy time for us all,” said Supporters Club chairwoman Marie Cadenhead. “We’re holding our AGM in the Priorscroft Bowling Club on Wednesday 29 May at 7.00pm and, on the following Sunday, 2 June, we’re taking part in the Renfrew Gala Day at Robertson Park from 1-5pm, when we’ll have a stall at the event, and I know that Pirates’ Off-Ice Operations Manager Jackie Turley is planning to bring our seven foot mascot, Timbers,along to say Hi and have his picture taken with the younger children, and maybe even some of the not so young children too.”

“It’s very important to everyone within the Pirates’ organisation that as members of the local community they get the opportunity to take part in local events such as this Gala Day, and I know we have another couple of similar events already in the diary over the summer before we get back into action of the icy kind.”

“Jackie has very kindly donated a game worn jersey to the Supporters Club which will be raffled on 2 June, meaning that one very lucky person is going to win what is now a piece of local history, a jersey worn on the ice when we beat Murrayfield Racers 5-0 to win the playoff title, and when you add that to all the other goodies we’ll have with us, that makes for a terrific opportunity for people attending to pick up a great prize at our stall. We know the Gala will be a big success at always is, and we’re looking forward to playing our part in making sure that history repeats itself.”

st vincents

On Sunday 23 June, kick off the summer in style with some cocktails, afternoon tea and entertainment at Mar Hall, Bishopton, and all for a fantastic cause, at the first Cocktails on the Clyde event in aid of St. Vincent’s Hospice.

st vincents

Starting at 1.30pm, you will have the opportunity to not only enjoy a delicious cocktail, but browse a fantastic shopping village in Morton House, before heading over to the beautiful Mar Hall marquee to take in some stunning views over the Clyde with afternoon tea.

Senior Fundraiser for St. Vincent’s Hospice, Louise Strachan, said: “Join us for an afternoon of entertainment and laughter, before hitting the dance floor with The Jersey Notes, as you journey back to a time when ‘Walk Like a Man’ and ‘Sherry’ were all the rage!

“’Don’t think twice, it’s alright’ to join us. Not only is this a great day out, but you will be doing your bit to support a local charity, with all profits going directly towards helping St. Vincent’s continue to offer life changing care for people who need it most.”

Based in the heart of the community, St. Vincent’s Hospice is a specialist provider of palliative and Hospice care for both people and families who are affected by life-limiting conditions.

Louise added: “To allow us to be there for families during some of the most difficult times of their lives, every year we have to raise nearly £1.5 million in voluntary donations, and this is only possible with your support for events just like this one.

“So please, join us, get your dancing shoes on and get in touch to reserve your tickets!”
For more information, please contact 01505 705 635 or email Info@svh.co.uk. Tickets are priced just £32.50 with tables of ten also available.

lisa-marie hughes pic

An ambitious new grant scheme will support local visual artists and craft-makers take their work to the next level.

Renfrewshire Leisure has teamed up with Creative Scotland to launch this year’s Visual Artist And Craft Maker Awards.

lisa-marie hughes pic

Artists and crafts people can apply for grant awards between £500 and £1500 to help with the cost of developing their creative and professional practices.

Organisers recommend anyone interested in applying for one of the VACMA awards to book a ten-minute one-to-one advice session with an advisor from Creative Scotland.

Would-be applicants should, in the first instance, contact Kate Drummond by emailingkate.drummond@renfrewshire.gov.uk or calling 07483 360714. Closing date for applications is Tuesday, June 4.

Renfrewshire Leisure’s chairperson, Councillor Lisa-Marie Hughes said: “There is an amazing array of creative talent in Renfrewshire and we want to help these artists flourish.

“The awards are intended to support artists and craft makers who can demonstrate a clear progression and development of their skills and have an on-going commitment to their work.

“This is an ideal opportunity for artists to gain much-needed financial support to help them continue their creative work.”