An invitation to join Renfrewshire Chamber of Commerce for 12 Days of Digital December starting tomorrow, Wed 1st December, colleagues can book for one session or them all.

Open to any business based in Renfrewshire, member & non-member the 12 days of Digital December are designed to help you adapt to the changing environment.  Funded by Renfrewshire Chamber these sessions are offered free of charge & form part of our strategy to support the recovery of the local economy. Please pass on the invitation to any staff member, contact or business you think would benefit from our free programme with some of the leading digital experts around.

Day 1 – Adapting your Social Presence in a World of Social Change (NSDesign)
Dec 1, 2:00pm – 4:00 pm
On Day 1 of The 12 Days of Digital December, we’ll start by reminding you that change is inevitable – especially in the world of social media. It shouldn’t take a pandemic to have businesses adapt to new technologies or social platforms – we should always be looking for opportunities to embrace, and new ways to engage our customers.

Day 2 – LinkedIn: What you need to know and what you need to do (Gordon White from fatBuzz)
Dec 2, 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm
With the recent government advice to continue to work from home where possible, the need to utilise online networking, lead generation and business development tools has never been greater.  Without a doubt, LinkedIn should be the starting point for many.

Day 4 – Making LinkedIn work for your business (With Gordon White from fatBuzz)
Dec 6 12:00 pm-1:00 pm

Join Gordon from fatBuzz looking at what you need to do to optimise your Business Page and how to tap into the power of LinkedIn Groups and LinkedIn Advertising.

Day 5 – 30 Day Plan For a Stronger Digital Presence (Janine Marriott SEO)
Dec 7, 1:00pm – 2:30 pm
30 uncomplicated, effective steps that you can do yourself for free that will help strengthen your digital presence. Ideal for local businesses whether service based or with a store front (even if you’re currently closed) it is not suitable for purely e-commerce businesses.

Day 6 – Conducting a Digital Competitor Analysis (NSDesign)
Dec 8, 2:00pm – 4:00pm

Join Gary from NSDesign as he provides you with an understanding of digital competitor analysis and why and how to use one using a range of free tools to help you understand and compare.

Day 7 – What A Podcast Could Do For Your Business… And How to Make It Happen (Colin Kelly)
Dec 9, 10:00 am – 12:00 pm

2021 has been a huge year for podcasting with more than 10 million people in the UK now listening regularly. Is it time your business got involved and launched a podcast?

Day 8 – Social Customer Service (NSDesign)
Dec 10, 10:00am- 12:00pm

A fun, and engaging workshop discussing what ‘great social service’ looks like in today’s connected world. We’ll look at examples from a variety of companies and ask if we really deliver quality customer service, or do we focus on the numbers. Do we look for opportunities to wow customers across our social channels or do we just react to complaints.

Day 9 – Putting your Content to work (With Gordon White from fatBuzz)
Dec 13, 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

The need to communicate has never been more critical.  During this period of disruption, uncertainty and a constant state of flux, businesses must continue to reach out to their stakeholders; in fact, it’s probably true that you need to increase your levels of communication.  So, Content Marketing has never been more important.

Day 10 – Anti-Social Media (NSDesign)
Dec 14, 10:00 am – 12:00 pm

Join NSDesign to learn where social media can go wrong in business, showing real world examples, the devastating outcomes, and discussing ways to mitigate the risks of it happening to you.

Day 11 – SEO in 2022 what you can expect and what you can do to get ready (Janine Marriott SEO)
Dec 15, 12:00pm – 1:30 pm

Join Janine Marriott SEO for a look ahead at how you can best utilise SEO in 2022.

Day 12 – How to use Analytics to grow your business online (Brian Tait from Aillum)
Dec 17, 11:00 am – 1:00 pm
Join Brian Tait at Aillum for an insight into some of the tools and data available to you now, free, that can help you start monitoring, refining and improving your digital marketing activities! Includes tips on Google Analytics, Keywords / Content, Heat Mapping, Site speed and more!

To book your free place please email Laura Connor: lconnor@renfrewshirechamber.com or Laura Ritchie: lritchie@renfrewshirechamber.com 

A memorial to one of Scotland’s worst-ever human tragedies has been officially unveiled in Paisley town centre.

A crowd of around 100 people gathered earlier today to commemorate the Glen Cinema disaster of 31 December 1929, which claimed the lives of 71 children and injured more than 30.

There had never been a permanent memorial to the tragedy in the town centre but as part of the 90th anniversary, artists Rachel Lowther and Kerry Stewart were commissioned to work with the local community to create one.

And their statue – called Rattle/Little Mother – has now been installed in the town’s Dunn Square – close to the former cinema site.

Members of the community gathered for a short ceremony earlier today, hosted by Renfrewshire’s Deputy Provost Cathy McEwan, with speeches from the artists and community representatives, followed by a piper’s lament.

The ceremony was attended by the two of the remaining survivors of the disaster – Robert Pope and Emily Brown, and their families.

The tragedy happened when a smoking film canister caused a panic during a packed children’s matinee with more than 600 children present. The metal gates on the main exit doors had been pulled shut, stopping it from opening, leading to a fatal crush.

Addressing the crowd, Depute Provost Cathy McEwan said: “The event is known as Paisley’s Black Hogmanay and local people still feel the pain of the tragedy very deeply.

“The impact on our community was monumental but Paisley people have real strength and pull together in times of need.

“For the first time, we have a place dedicated to the children and families of the Glen Cinema, within sight of the place itself.”

Artists Rachel Lowther and Kerry Stewart both spoke and thanked all involved in the process and Rachel said in her speech: “The Glen Cinema pierced the heart of Paisley and we are very aware of that pain.

“We hope people will come to love the statue but what matters most to us is we did right by Emily and Robert and the families of the Glen Cinema children.”

And Tony Lawler – one of the working group who helped create the memorial – added: “It is important Paisley town centre has a dedicated memorial to be a focus for the annual commemoration service.

“We will never forget the children of the Glen Cinema…this is a fitting and beautiful memorial and this is their space now.”

To create the memorial, Kerry and Rachel worked with community groups including the STAR Project, Paisley Community Trust, and pupils from Paisley Grammar School.

The memorial was funded by the Rotary Club of Paisley and by Future Paisley – the council-led programme of events and activity using the town’s unique culture and heritage to transform its future.

Renfrewshire’s recovery from the economic impact of the pandemic is making great progress, according to the latest data.

Business, enterprise and skills leaders from across Renfrewshire set out a two-year recovery plan for the area last December focusing on priority actions to bolster the local economy and help make Renfrewshire net zero by 2030.

Figures detailed in the latest economic profile – a data set compiled every six months by Renfrewshire Council’s Economic Development team – and figures from the Office of National Statistics (ONS) – both show the major steps being made since the outset of the Covid-19 pandemic.

There are now 3,000 fewer people claiming unemployment benefits than during the pandemic peak last August – a marked 38% reduction.

Across all age groups, the claimant numbers have reduced significantly, including 700 fewer people aged 50 and over than in August 2020.

For people aged 16-24, the figures are just five shy of pre-pandemic levels, bolstered by more than 250 young people starting in paid placements, traineeships and Modern Apprenticeships with the Council and local businesses this year.

Renfrewshire currently has the second-highest employment rate for people 16-64 in the Glasgow City Region, outstripping the national position, while the percentage of people with no qualifications has reached the lowest level in the Glasgow City Region, down by 5.1% since 2015.

Renfrewshire Council Leader Iain Nicolson has hailed the collective effort being made to support local businesses and employees, building on more than £53million in business grants and lifeline funding.

Councillor Nicolson said: “The Covid-19 pandemic has brought major economic challenge and pressure and we have been working closely with local businesses, skills and economic agencies to take every available action which can make the biggest difference locally, speed up recovery where possible and deliver growth while progressing our climate change commitment.

“It’s pleasing to see the latest data highlighting the positive progress being made right across the board, with new jobs being created, fewer people claiming unemployment benefits and more opportunities for young people.

“It’s vital, as our recovery plan reaches the one-year mark, that we redouble our efforts and all stay focused on delivering a thriving Renfrewshire where people want to work, live, visit and invest in.”

Renfrewshire’s recovery plan targeted help to young people, with Renfrewshire’s Young Person’s Guarantee website setting out how £2million is being directed to help young people in Renfrewshire with jobs, training and support, while school pupils are benefitting from developing the young workforce co-ordinator posts in every secondary school.

Employability experts at Renfrewshire Council are also delivering the No-One Left Behind employer recruitment incentive to help people facing barriers to employment into the local workforce and help people facing redundancy.

Another key focus has been helping businesses, with projects including Start-Up Street, a workplace wellbeing campaign and a network for local manufacturers to access the developing manufacturing district AMIDS all progressing at pace.

There’s also new active travel routes being built, better connecting pedestrians and cyclists to public transport and employment centres as part of plans to cut carbon emissions and support people to leave their car at home.

This progress has been welcomed by James Lang, chair of Renfrewshire’s Economic Leadership Panel and Director of Scottish Leather Group, the UK’s largest leather manufacturer.

He said: “It is pleasing to see our economy performing well when compared with regional and national rates for employment, unemployment, qualifications and earnings, while also driving forward a sustainable future for the region which brings benefits to every Renfrewshire resident.

“When we set out the roadmap to recovery, we knew achieving it would only be possible with all partners working together and playing their part, those from both the public and private sectors.

“It’s great to see this partnership playing its part and it’s not just in the data that we can see the progress being made, there’s a wide range of capital investment well underway that will deliver more homes, refurbish current homes and build the roads, bridges and transport connections that underpin economic growth.”

Case study – Lauren Hart

“I’ve always wanted to work for a local council, because I think you can see the difference you’re making,” says Lauren Hart.

The former St Andrew’s Academy pupil is thriving in her role with us as a Sustainable Procurement trainee, helping to make our tendering and contract processes as environmentally sustainable as possible.

Lauren is one of 250 people aged 16-24 who have start started in paid placements, traineeships and Modern Apprenticeships with the Council and local businesses this year.

Supporting young people is a priority of the region’s plan to recover from the impact of the pandemic and there’s a dedicated website called the Young Person’s Guarantee Renfrewshire which has details of all the jobs, training and support available.

For Lauren, from Dykebar, the support has been really important, having struggled to find work after graduating from university.

Now, the Marine Planning & Sustainable Development graduate is pleased to be transferring her sustainability skills and climate change knowledge to the benefit of procurement projects across Renfrewshire. She says: “The availability of graduate jobs just seemed to dry out or they were asking for a lot more experience than they had asked for previously. The traineeship is really enjoyable and it’s great there is support out there for people like me, especially with everything that’s going on in the world.”

paisley from drone

Anyone applying for Scottish benefits is able to access direct support from an adviser through a new service now available in Renfrewshire.

social security scotland

Social Security Scotland’s Local Delivery initiative provides person to person support from trained staff in every local authority area.

Advisers can answer any queries people may have about Social Security Scotland benefits and help with form filling.

People can book in-person meetings with an adviser at home or in their local community, at a time and location that suits them best.

These can be face-to-face, by video call or by phone. Face-to-face appointments will take place with Covid-19 protection measures in place.

It follows a successful pilot in Dundee City, Perth and Kinross, and the Western Isles earlier this year and coincides with the national roll out of Child Disability Payment.

Social Security Minister Ben Macpherson said:

“I am proud that we are offering this brand new service, which is not available elsewhere in the UK.

“Social Security Scotland’s Local Delivery service is there to provide extra support and choice right across the country.

“We want to try to minimise any feelings of anxiety or stress when people need to access benefits. That is why are offering face-to-face meetings, or video or phone calls – whatever will best meet the needs of each particular person.

“I hope that face-to-face appointments will be especially helpful for people claiming disability assistance. Our specially trained advisers are available to help with all of our 11 different benefits.”

A mum of a girl who has used the service said it helped her overcome stress about accessing benefits to which she was entitled.

The 30-year-old mother, who was given assistance during the pilot in Perth and Kinross, accessed Child Disability Payment for her daughter, who suffers from a chronic medical condition.

The woman, who asked not to be named, said:

“I wasn’t sure whether my daughter was eligible and I asked for help from the local delivery team. The woman who helped me was amazing.

“She explained clearly all the information I needed to get from my daughter’s GP and school. I prefer speaking over the phone to a real person and was allowed to do that in two stages. It has made a difference to me.”

Background

  • The introduction of the Scottish Local Delivery follows the roll out of the Child Disability Payment pilot which will provide financial support to children and young people with disabilities.
  • An appointment with a Client Support Adviser can be made by contacting Social Security Scotland on 0800 182 2222. Face–to-face support is by appointment or via video call or telephone appointment and can take place:
  • in people’s homes,
  • in local community venues
  • in hospitals
  • For more information, contact Social Security Scotland through web chat at mygov.scot/contact-social-security-scotland/ or call the freephone helpline on 0800 182 2222.

Extension of gym hours part of Renfrewshire Leisure’s ongoing work following impact of Covid-19 on charity’s services

Gyms at three of Renfrewshire’s most popular leisure centres are to be open for longer in response to customer demand.

Hours are being extended from Monday, November 29, at the Lagoon in Paisley, ON-X, Linwood, and Renfrew Leisure Centre. Session slots are available now.

The move is part of operator Renfrewshire Leisure’s ongoing recovery of services following disruption caused by the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Mark Tokeley, Head of Leisure and Community Services, said: “We’re listening to our members and customers all of the time and tailoring our services as best we can to meet their needs. We’re delighted to be able to offer this increase in hours at the Lagoon, ON-X and Renfrew. We hope they will give more people the opportunity to use our services to lead better, healthier lives.”

From Monday, Renfrew Leisure Centre will be open from 7am until 9pm Monday to Thursday. Services are currently not operating between 10am and 3pm. A Covid-19 vaccination centre currently operates there each Friday.

Both the Lagoon and ON-X will be open from 6am until 9pm, Monday to Friday. Weekend sessions at Lagoon will start an hour earlier at 8.20am. Currently, each only opens at 6am on two days of the week, opening at 7.20am on the other days.

At all of the venues, the first and final sessions of each day will be longer. For the final session of the day, that gives users the flexibility to arrive later than 7.20pm for the session. The final entrance time is 8.20pm.

For the latest details about all Renfrewshire Leisure services, go to www.refrewshireleisure.com.

A key footbridge across the White Cart has reopened to the public after more than 25 years and will soon form part of a new walking and cycle route from Renfrew to Paisley.

Originally a rolling lift bascule bridge built by Scottish engineer Sir William Arrol, the bridge at Abercorn Street in Paisley had been closed for more than two decades before Renfrewshire Council commissioned works earlier this year to strengthen and refurbish the structure.

Repairs included strengthening of the steelwork, coating with protective paint, new lighting, and landscaping around the entrances to the bridge on Carlile Street and Abercorn Street – with the works carried out by W.I. & A. Gilbert Ltd and overseen by Sweco UK Ltd

The bridge will form a key part of the Renfrew to Paisley cycle route, planned for construction in 2022, as well as complementing the Clyde Waterfront and Renfrew Riverside project and Glasgow Airport Cycle Route.

The refurbishment of the bridge also precedes £38million of investment from the Levelling Up Fund for the area, which includes a new road bridge over the White Cart, an east-west road linking Renfrew Rd and Love St, and enhance links with Paisley town centre, Glasgow Airport and the Advanced Manufacturing Innovation District Scotland.

Depute Provost Cathy McEwan cut the ribbon to officially re-open the bridge and is looking forward to seeing it being used by the local community.

Councillor McEwan said: “I’m delighted that this bridge has been brought back into use for the community as it gives people a new option for crossing the river on foot or by bike.

“It’s been out of commission for far too long and credit must go to the team for completing the project to restore it.

“We want to encourage people to use active travel methods wherever possible as we seek to reduce emissions, tackle climate change and encourage healthier lifestyles.

“We know we need to provide the infrastructure to support people to do this and this bridge will be part of a new cycle route connecting the town centres of Renfrew and Paisley set to be built next year – one of many active travel projects that the Council is taking forward for the benefit of people in Renfrewshire.”

Sustrans Scotland part funded the project as they aim to make it easier for people to walk, wheel and cycle as part of their vision to create a society where the way we travel creates healthier places and happier lives for everyone. 

Tim Aeberli, Infrastructure Coordinator for Sustrans Scotland, said: “We are delighted to see the reopening of the White Cart Footbridge to the public after three years of planning and construction works.

“Places for Everyone has worked in collaboration with Renfrewshire Council and Sweco to provide a new strategic walking, cycling and wheeling link over the White Cart river.

“In addition, residents can now enjoy a new enhanced public space providing new benches, bike parking, trees and flowers.”

The project was jointly funded by SPT as part of their support for active travel.

SPT Vice Chair Councillor David Wilson said: “SPT is pleased to have been able to give funding support to Renfrewshire Council for the refurbishment of the White Cart Footbridge. “Having been closed for many years, we are delighted to see the bridge now brought back into use, and we recognise the benefits the reopening will bring for wheeling, walking and cycling trips linking local and wider communities”

Renfrewshire residents joined local activists to honour those who have lost their lives due to domestic abuse and sexual violence.

Co-ordinated by Renfrewshire Council and partners in health, police and fire services, and the Paisley branch of Soroptimist International, the Reclaim the Night event saw local people gathering to lay white ribbons and a wreath as part of a silent vigil.

The event marks the beginning of Renfrewshire’s 16 days of action, echoing the international campaign by the UN to eradicate violence against women that takes place every year between 25th November and 10th December.

Women, men and children at the event placed white ribbons beside a wreath on the fence at Dunn Square, Paisley.

People are urged to pop by and place their own white ribbon at any time during the 16 days of action.

Renfrewshire Provost Lorraine Cameron attended the event and said it was good to see people get together to raise awareness of gender-based violence.

Provost Cameron said: “Gathering each year to remember those who have lost their lives to violence is always poignant, and after having to miss the event last year due to the pandemic, it was good that we could continue to honour their memories together.

“Gender-based violence remains an issue in our society and that’s why it’s important we speak out against it. Our streets and homes should be safe places for women, regardless of clothing, or time of day or night, but it is more than just a women’s issue.

“Educating people about violence that people experience in their daily lives and ensuring that we all take responsibility for the problem of violence is essential to creating real change in how we behave.

“It’s time to end the stigma around violence and stop blaming the victim. If you are experiencing domestic abuse, reach out and tell someone.”

Anyone suffering from domestic violence can get help via two national helplines, which are available 24/7 and are free to call from a landline.

Scottish Domestic Abuse Helpline – 0800 027 1234

Abused Men in Scotland Helpline – 0808 800 0024

Locally, Women and Children First can be contacted on 0300 300 0345.

paisley from drone

A memorial to the 71 children who lost their lives in one of Scotland’s worst ever human tragedies is to be unveiled in Paisley town centre next week.

Entrance-to-Glen-Cinema

The Glen Cinema Disaster of 31 December 1929 remains known as Paisley’s Black Hogmanay – yet until now the town centre did not have a permanent memorial for the victims and survivors.

Artists Kerry Stewart and Rachel Lowther were commissioned to work with the local community on a suitable memorial as part of the 90th anniversary of the tragedy.

And their now-finished statue – entitled Rattle/ Little Mother – will be sited in the town’s Dunn Square, across the road from the site of the former cinema, in Dyer’s Wynd.

The tragedy happened when a smoking film canister caused a panic during a packed children’s matinee with more than 600 children present.

The metal gates on the main exit doors had been pulled shut, stopping it from opening, leading to a crush where 71 children died, and more than 30 were injured.

The memorial will be unveiled at a small ceremony led by Renfrewshire’s Provost Lorraine Cameron next Tuesday (30 November) at 1pm, joined by members of the local community.

To create the memorial, Kerry and Rachel met with community groups including the STAR Project, Paisley Community Trust, and pupils from Paisley Grammar School, with a working group formed to help drive the project.

An important part of the process was meeting with the two remaining survivors of the tragedy, and their families.

Community activist Tony Lawler – one of the organisers of the annual ceremony to mark the tragedy which takes place every Hogmanay – was a member of the working group.

He said: “It’s important the town centre has a memorial – as it’s about more than remembering the 71 who died, it’s for the survivors and their families too.

“For a long time, people didn’t really talk about the Glen Cinema – the survivors were sent away to convalesce and didn’t get the support they would have if it happened now.

“The existing memorial at Hawkhead isn’t accessible for everyone, so having one in the town centre is important as it will give people a place to go to reflect.

“Since the 80th anniversary we’ve held community-led memorial ceremonies at the Cenotaph but it has a different purpose. This memorial will provide a new focus dedicated to the Glen Cinema.”

Artists Kerry Stewart and Rachel Lowther said: “Having met with survivors Emily Brown and Robert Pope and processed, through research and community engagement, what happened on that terrible day, we wanted to produce something that spoke to and of the children.

“We have tried to create a sculpture that is playful yet serious, that hovers between a nostalgic lost object – a portal to the children of Paisley, 1929 – and a sacred or devotional object, carrying the story of the children as their own protectors.”

The memorial was funded by the Rotary Club of Paisley and through Future Paisley – the council-led programme of events and activity using the town’s unique culture and heritage to transform its future.

Provost Lorraine Cameron said: “The Glen Cinema remains printed in Paisley’s collective memory as perhaps the darkest day in the history of the town.

“It is important the events of that horrific day should never be forgotten and that’s why this permanent memorial means so much.

“This has been a real community effort – the artists and the groups they have worked with have done a fantastic job to create a sensitive reminder of the tragedy, and all involved deserve praise for their efforts.

“I would invite any members of the local community to join us on Tuesday to see the memorial unveiled.”

Tonight The Bungalow has been booked for a special birthday party. Local well know musician Drew McCormick who was responsible for revitalising the Paisley Music Scene when it was all but gone two decades ago. The movement was called The Bungalow Bar Revival Nights. The success of these nights led to the opening of The Bungalow where it is today in Shuttle street. So The Bungalow is the perfect place for Drew’s 21st (that’s what he told me) If you would like to say Happy Birthday to Drew then pop in for a song or a drink or both. Doors are at 7pm.

Tomorrow night Internationally acclaimed Scottish singer-songwriter JJ Gilmour who made his recording debut in 1989 with The Silencers, one of Scotland’s loved bands is playing a solo gig. ‘Jinky’ enjoyed great success throughout Europe and America after joining the band as a backing vocalist though later in the bands career JJ progressed seamlessly to join Jimme O’Neill sharing lead vocals.

Seven action-packed years of gigging and recording ensued during which The Silencers had gold albums and sold almost a million records for BMG/RCA. After this successful period with the band, JJ decided he needed to take on new challenges and embarked upon his solo career.

He recorded his critically acclaimed debut solo album ‘Sunnyside P.A.L’ in 2002. The album became the catalyst for establishing his now fiercely loyal fan base and gained wide spread acclaim from his peers as an ‘outstanding debut album’. Now album number five is in the pipeline for JJ. Looks like the gig is a sell out. 

Local singer Leana Zaccarini is appearing tomorrow afternoon from 2pm with the Moonlighters. She is the perfect answer for a ‘pick me up’ after a heavy week at work.  It’ll be a fun afternoon filled with laid back Latin, smooth Swing, ballsy Blues and fabulous Funk.

Littlest Chicken the Tiktok star is heading to The Bungalow on Thursday. He has over half a million fans that follow his online videos. The social media platform TikTok has catapulted the popular Ayrshireman who got the whole of Scotland laughing through the last two lockdowns. As well as performing online comedy, he writes and performs his own songs, and released his first single Hey” last year to much acclaim. He released his second single “Homegrown” in June which he was inspired to write after a drive back from Ayr (where he lived for three and half years) to his hometown of Stranraer. Doors 7pm and tickets are £10/8.

The Cave has another packed ‘Four in a Row’ this week again starting with tonight: Overdrive at 9pm, Tomorrow at 6pm Fire In followed by The State Blues Band at 9pm. On Sunday it is Los Perros. From 6pm.

In the ‘Shoppers Slot’ at The Old Swan tomorrow they have Distant Sun at 4pm. Cammy Millar is back in his usual slot at 4pm on Monday. Lee James on Tuesday at 3pm with Swing, and he’s back on Thursday at 3pm this time for a Trip Through the Decades.

There is a bit of rock going on in the East End at 9pm in Harvies with Midnight Moses. Kennedys ‘Sunday Sesh’ this week is Crackerman at 4pm. The Keg have The Proposal in tonight at 9pm. The last time they played The Keg it was standing room only. Tomorrow night at 9pm it is Warren Capaldi back by popular demand.

The fantastic Mod Life Crisis are playing at Rocknrollas tonight.  The popular band who are well known in Paisley due to their appearances at March of the Mods and ModStuff are sure to fill the dance floor. Doors 7.30pm. Tomorrow night the West End Venue welcomes back The James Experience Born of Frustration doors 7.30pm.

Open Mic Nights this week are Dunky Hunter at The Abbey on Monday from 8.30pm; Stevie D 9pm on Tuesday at Gantry. Wednesday is The Keg’s Open Mic with Johnny Barr and starts at 8.30pm.

Renfrew-Town-Hall

Renfrewshire Council will hold a recruitment event next month as it launches a search for people to join its Soft Facilities Management team. 

The council currently has vacancies available in the team for Caretakers, School Crossing Patrollers, Housekeepers, Cleaners and Facilities Operatives who will work in schools covering various duties, including cleaning, catering and compliance. 

Vacancies for part-time drivers who will deliver school meals are also available. 

It will hold a recruitment event to fill these vacancies at Park Mains High School, Erskine on Thursday 16 December from 10am-12pm and 2pm-4pm. 

Candidates will be able to apply for the vacancies at the recruitment event. Successful applicants will then be offered an immediate interview and can complete most of their recruitment checks on the day. 

Applications can also be submitted in advance through MyJobScotland, with successful applicants being invited to interviews at the recruitment event.  

All applicants must bring proof of identification and two work related references with them to the event. 

Councillor John Shaw, Convener of the Council’s Finance and Resources Policy Board, said: “This is a great opportunity to join a fantastic team.  

“Our Soft Facilities Management Team make a difference to the lives of our residents, communities and schools every day. 

“Renfrewshire is a Scottish Living Wage employer and has a lot to offer anyone considering a career in Soft Facilities Management, from development opportunities to competitive terms and conditions. 

“If you are interested in joining our team, please come along to our recruitment event or apply online at MyJobScotland.” 

For more information on the recruitment event, including what documents to bring and how to travel to it, visit www.renfrewshire.gov.uk/soft-fm-jobs

If you have any questions about your application or the recruitment event, call 07483 318 963 or email soft-fm@renfrewshire.gov.uk

To apply for these vacancies in advance of the event, visit www.myjobscotland.gov.uk/councils/renfrewshire-council/jobs 

EARLY-BIRD shoppers can take advantage of the Black Friday bargains at the Braehead Centre as it opens two hours earlier than normal.

Store bosses throughout the malls are giving shoppers an early Christmas present by slashing prices, as Braehead opens its doors at 8am instead of the usual 10am on Friday, November 26.

The popular Currys electronics store in the Braehead Retail Park also opens at 8am – an hour earlier than usual.

Many retailers started their sales early this week in the run-up to the now-traditional Black Friday bargain bonanza – and some will continue until the end of this month.

There are huge discounts available from a wide variety of stores at the Braehead Centre including up to 60 per cent off fashion at Joules; up to 50 per cent of jewellery stores Beaverbrooks and Thomas Sabo; up to 50 per cent off Unique Clinics treatments; up to 40 per cent off at Kids Cavern and Kiddie Boutique, while H. Samuel say they have offers that are better than half price.

Braehead Centre Director, Peter Beagley said: “Shoppers recognise that there are some fantastic offers on during Black Friday and beyond. This is encouraging them to get into top gear for their Christmas shopping.


“Fears of supply chain issues and a desire to beat the rush has meant shoppers are coming out early to do their Christmas shopping to make sure they get the gifts they really want for family and friends.”

Peter added: “We’re hearing that big ticket items like jewellery and watches are doing well this year and our new luxury concept Goldsmiths store had an exceptional first weekend since they opened last week.


“We’ve also seen our restaurants and cafes a lot busier this week as people combine ‘me time’, or meeting up with friends and family with their Christmas shopping.”

Scottish Government Minister hopes grants will spur on schemes – unlocking innovation and action which will make cities, towns and neighbourhoods stronger

Minister for Community Wealth Tom Arthur met business leaders in Milngavie as he launched the Scottish Government’s Scotland Loves Local Fund today (Monday, August 9 2021). The fund will be administered by Scotland’s Towns Partnership. Mr Arthur is pictured, right, with Scotland’s Towns Partnership Chief Officer Phil Prentice. Picture: Jamie Simpson / Scotland’s Towns Partnership

Organisations across Renfrewshire and East Renfrewshire have secured a share of £1.5m from the Scotland Loves Local Fund.

Schemes in Paisley, Renfrew, Lochwinnoch, Clarkston, Barrhead and Newton Mairns are among those benefiting from the boost to help revitalise cities, town centres and neighbourhoods (see details in this table / attached PDF).

The Scottish Government fund encourages support for local economies which were impacted by the coronavirus pandemic.

Nationally, it includes help to restore local tourism, make town centres more environmentally friendly and sustainable, support communities to refurbish shop fronts and public spaces ahead of the festive season.

Community Wealth Minister Tom Arthur, who is also the MSP for Renfrewshire South, said: “The Scottish Government is supporting our communities to deliver renewed local prosperity. I hope these grants will help spur on many of the projects which are vital to unlocking the innovation and action which will make our towns and neighbourhoods stronger.

“The Fund provides 50% match funding for local projects between £5,000 and £25,000 and targets funding towards local economies that have been impacted most due to the pandemic, including those in areas with pre‑existing inequality.

“It reinforces our determination to support all our communities as they recover and will help strengthen the vital backing being provided through the Scotland Loves Local marketing campaign and gift card scheme.

“These grants are part of Scottish Government measures to create a fairer, healthier, greener, inclusive and more sustainable economic recovery.”

The Fund has been administered by Scotland’s Towns Partnership (STP), the organisation spearheading Scotland Loves Local with support from the Scottish Government.

STP Chief Officer Phil Prentice said: “Vital work is taking place across Renfrewshire and East Renfrewshire – indeed throughout Scotland – to revitalise and reimagine our communities. There’s real innovation among the projects being supported. I am sure these grants will go a long way to turning these ambitious visions into action, delivering real benefits.” 

The Scotland Loves Local campaign urges people to think, choose and spend local to help their communities recover from the impact of coronavirus and build a stronger future.

More details about the Scotland Loves Local campaign can be found at www.lovelocal.scot or by following #ScotlandLovesLocal on social media.

The £10 million Scotland Loves Local programme extends over five years and encourages people to think and choose local first by supporting their businesses and communities.