window wanderland

Find out how you can join in this year’s Halloween festivities by decorating and lighting up your windows 🎃👾
window wanderland
As part of Paisley Halloween Festival presents Out of This World, you can get involved by registering your otherworldly decorations and creations as part of a special Window Wanderland trail.

It’s free to take part and you can create whatever you want, from lights in the window, a cutout silhouette, simple to spectacular it’s up to you!

Plus, spread the word with your friends and neighbours – we’d love to see your streets transformed into magical outdoor galleries.

Head over to our website to find out more on how you can register your window 👉 https://www.windowwanderland.com/event/renfrewshire-2021/

This is a fantastic idea by Paisley.is

You Decide

Having honed his talents on the cycle routes of Renfrewshire, Jack Carlin hopes to inspire a peloton of cyclists to follow in his footsteps after winning silver and bronze at the Tokyo Olympic Games this summer.

You Decide

Born and brought up in Paisley, Jack spent his younger years as a footballer but after an injury put him into the saddle as part of his recovery, football soon became a distant memory.

Using Renfrewshire’s many safe cycle routes, Jack developed his love of cycling and now, thanks to Renfrewshire Council’s new #YouDecide campaign, Jack hopes to inspire the next generation of cyclists and support those who just love getting out on their bikes.

Jack said: “I’ve been using the cycle routes around Renfrewshire since I was young and it’s on them that my love of cycling really started to develop and I believe it’s so important that all cyclists have the opportunity to get out on their bikes.

“Obviously in my case, it has led to a career and ultimately competing at the Olympics, but it’s so important that people of all ages have the chance to cycle safely around where they live ad enjoy cycling for what it brings to their physical and mental health.

“It’s great that this new campaign will give people the chance to put forward improvements to their local cycle route or even suggest new ones and I’d encourage everyone to get involved – it’s our chance to have our say and make a positive difference to our local area.”

The #YouDecide campaign is the first Community Choices project of its kind undertaken by Renfrewshire Council and gives the community the chance to decide how part of the Council’s budget is spent.

A total of £1.2million has been allocated to the campaign from the Council’s Environment and Infrastructure budget and ideas are being sought for possible infrastructure upgrades in Renfrewshire, such as road safety initiatives, new walking or cycling routes, park upgrades or outdoor gym equipment.

The ideas process open until Sunday 14 November 2021 and can be submitted online at www.renfrewshire.gov.uk/YouDecide or via post boxes placed in libraries, leisure centres and Morrisons supermarkets across Renfrewshire.

Officers will carry out a feasibility study on each idea and, once complete, a shortlist of all viable projects will be put to a public vote in early 2022.

Local people will then have the chance to choose the ones they’d like to see completed in their area, with the Council carrying out the work on the successful projects

Councillor Michelle Campbell, Depute Convener of Renfrewshire Council’s Infrastructure, Land and Environment Policy Board, said: “It was incredible to see Jack’s success at this summer’s Olympics, especially knowing that he’d started his journey here in Renfrewshire.

“We’re want to ensure people are able to cycle safely throughout Renfrewshire and it just goes to show the importance of providing safe cycle routes as we may be inspiring the next Olympic athlete for Team GB.

“A new cycle route is just one possible idea though that you can submit as part of the #YouDecide campaign and we want as many and as wide a range of ideas as possible so, if there’s an infrastructure improvement that you would like completed in your area then submit it to us now.

“This is another chance for the Council and the community to work together to make Renfrewshire a better place to live, work and visit so don’t miss your chance to have your say.”

For more information and to submit an idea, visit www.renfrewshire.gov.uk/YouDecide.

Don’t miss Wee Spree activities over the October holidays

There’s lots of family fun to be had over the October holidays as The Wee Spree returns to Paisley.

The popular programme takes place from Saturday 9 – Saturday 16 October.

Music is at the heart of the programme with a Family Silent Disco and thrilling dance classes for early years and older age groups.

The Refs will entertain with fun warmups and obstacle courses, while the Comedy Club 4 Kids brings an exciting workshop to get kids learning hilarious jokes before a show for families from top comedians.

See all the great family events and ticket information on The Spree website.

street stuff logo

Young people are counting down the days to the start of the school holidays and Street Stuff will be out and about in communities across Renfrewshire.

Multi-sports gaming and much more will be available for those aged 5 to 16 at venues across Renfrewshire throughout the week, with activities split by age groups across the day.

street stuff logo

A free, healthy meal will be provided at every session so the young people are fully energised to take part and all are welcome to attend.

Monday 11 October
9:30am – 12:30pm (suitable for 5-8 year olds)
1:30pm – 4:30pm (suitable for 9-16 year olds)

Glencoats Primary School, Paisley
St James’ Primary School, Moorpark

Tuesday 12 October
9:30am – 12:30pm (suitable for 5-8 year olds)
1:30pm – 4:30pm (suitable for 9-16 year olds)

Woodlands Primary School, Linwood
St Paul’s Primary School, Paisley

Wednesday 13 October
9:30am – 12:30pm (suitable for 5-8 year olds)
1:30pm – 4:30pm (suitable for 9-16 year olds)

West Johnstone Shared Campus
Woodlands Primary School, Linwood
Bargarran Primary School, Erskine

Thursday 14 October
9:30am – 12:30pm (suitable for 5-8 year olds)
1:30pm – 4:30pm (suitable for 9-16 year olds)

Bargarran Primary School, Erskine
West Johnstone Shared Campus
St Paul’s Primary School, Paisley

Friday 15 October
9:30am – 12:30pm (suitable for 5-8 year olds)
1:30pm – 4:30pm (suitable for 9-16 year olds)

Glencoats Primary School, Paisley
St James’ Primary School, Moorpark

Consent forms must be completed by all participants and will be available on the first day of arrival or can be filled out online in advance.

The October Week clubs will run alongside Street Stuff’s evening programme which hosts activities six days a week at venues across Renfrewshire.

All participants will need to provide contact details for Test and Protect and follow the current guidelines, including wearing a facemask where applicable between games. Hand sanitizer stations and wipes will be available at all locations.

Councillor Marie McGurk, Convener of Renfrewshire Council’s Communities, Housing and Planning Policy Board, said: “We’re committed to providing sport and exercise opportunities for all our young people and our free October Week camps give our young people the chance to have fun with their friends when they’re not in school.

“It’s a brilliant opportunity to brush up on your sporting skills and meet new people so come along to Street Stuff and have some fun.”

Street Stuff is a diversionary project run in partnership between Renfrewshire Council, Police Scotland, Scottish Fire and Rescue Service, Engage Renfrewshire and St Mirren Football Club.

The programme began in 2009 in Renfrewshire contributing to a reduction in youth disorder and anti-social behaviour by 75 percent over the first five years with a sustained reduction of 65 percent.

Lynsey McLean, General Manager of St Mirren Football Club, said: “We are delighted that the October camps are going to be available to so many local children. It is a great incentive that we are proud to be part of. We hope all the children have the best time and enjoy making memories.”

For more information and to see the October Week programme, visit www.renfrewshire.gov.uk/streetstuff.

The Twilight Sad by Paige Parsons
You Decide

Team GB’s double medal winning cyclist Jack Carlin has helped launch Renfrewshire Council’s brand-new campaign #YouDecide which gives local communities control over part of the Council’s budget.

Local people are being asked to submit their ideas for infrastructure projects, such as road safety initiatives, new walking or cycling routes, outdoor gyms, or anything which they know will make their community a better place to live, work and visit.

It forms part of the Council’s commitment to community empowerment and £1.2million has been allocated from the Environment and Infrastructure budget across three years (2020-2023).

Having honed his talents on the cycle routes of Renfrewshire, Jack hopes new and improved cycle routes will inspire the next generation of cyclists and support those who just love getting out on their bikes.

You Decide

Jack said: “Safe cycle routes are so important as I really believe that cycling is a great way to improve your mental and physical health and everyone should have the opportunity to get out on their bikes safely and to have fun.

“This new campaign is a great opportunity for us to tell the Council what improvements are needed to our local cycle paths – and even suggest new ones – so please get your ideas in as soon as you can.

“It’s a chance to make real improvements to our local area, not just for cycle paths but for anything that we know might not be on the Council’s radar but needs an upgrade.

“So get involved, tell your friends and let’s decide together what this money should be spent on.”

The #YouDecide campaign is the first Community Choices project of its kind undertaken by Renfrewshire Council and gives the community the chance to decide how part of the Council’s budget is spent.

You Decide

Ideas are being sought for possible infrastructure upgrades in Renfrewshire, with the ideas process open until Sunday 14 November 2021, and they can be submitted online at www.renfrewshire.gov.uk/YouDecide or via post boxes placed in libraries, leisure centres and Morrisons supermarkets across Renfrewshire.

Officers will carry out a feasibility study on each idea and, once complete, a shortlist of all viable projects will be put to a public vote in early 2022.

Local people will then have the chance to choose the ones they’d like to see completed in their area, with the Council carrying out the work on the successful projects.

Councillor Michelle Campbell, Depute Convener of Renfrewshire Council’s Infrastructure, Land and Environment Policy Board, said: “We want to involve our communities in decision making around how we spend our budget as there is no substitute for local knowledge.

“We know that local people will know exactly what is needed where they live and often it’s not something that we as Council could be aware of until people tell us.

“So, this substantial allocation from the record investment we’ve put into our roads budget will allow projects to be delivered that will make a real, tangible difference for people across Renfrewshire and I’d encourage everyone to put forward their ideas, no matter how big or small.

“This is another chance for us to work together as a Council and a community so let us know how we can make a positive difference to your neighbourhood.”

The Community Empowerment (Scotland) Act 2015 requires local authorities to promote and facilitate public participation in the decision and activity of the authority, including the allocation of resources.

It has been shown that better community engagement and participation leads to the delivery of more responsive services and better outcomes for communities.

Community Choices allows communities to discuss and agree on how a percentage of the budget can be spent in their area.

For more information and to submit an idea, visit www.renfrewshire.gov.uk/YouDecide.

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A new service which provides advice on employment issues to low-income households and people impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic will launch in Renfrewshire today (Friday 1 October).

Citizens_Advice_Logo

Fair Work Renfrewshire will give help, support and advice to people who need it on employment matters including redundancy, dismissal and the end of furlough as well as benefits entitlements for those who may have had a change to their employment status.

The two-year project, which is run by Renfrewshire’s Citizens Advice Bureau and funded by Renfrewshire Council, will also work with partners, including the council, to reach people in Renfrewshire who are vulnerable to employment issues, ensuring they receive help and support when they need it.

Anyone who uses the service can also receive help for other issues, like debt and money advice, or be referred to partners and council teams for support on matters which are not related to employment.

Gavin Lovesey, Service Development Manager at Renfrewshire Citizen’s Advice Bureau, said: “We are delighted to be able to provide the new Fair Work Renfrewshire service which will deliver advice and representation on employment issues.

“At a time when we know employers face difficult decisions, it is vital employees and workers have access to free, confidential and impartial advice.

“Our team is looking forward to helping people understand their rights and what options are available to them. If you think you have been treated unfairly in your workplace or have any other work-related concerns, please get in touch.”

Renfrewshire Citizens Advice Bureau received £100,000 funding for the service in the Council’s 2021/22 Budget.

The funding was part of the council’s Social Renewal Plan, which sets out the work the council will do with its partners to tackle inequality and poverty, and support families and communities in the wake of COVID-19.

Councillors approved £665,000 funding for the next stage of the plan, which focuses on tackling poverty and supporting communities, in June. The money is being used to fund projects which will tackle poverty, support people struggling with rising fuel costs, improve access to benefits and affordable credit, and help community organisations tackle food insecurity.

Renfrewshire Council Leader Iain Nicolson said: “The pandemic has been particularly tough for people in Renfrewshire who are on low-incomes and facing job uncertainty, and the end of furlough will make things tougher for some households.

“Fair Work Renfrewshire will help support people during these tough times, giving them access to the advice they need on employment issues.

“The service is being funded by our Social Renewal Plan which continues to provide support for projects that help our communities and tackle the issues they are facing as we navigate our way out of this pandemic.”

The Social Renewal Plan will inform the next stage of the council’s successful Tackling Poverty programme, which generated almost £800,000 of additional income for households in 2020/21.

It also supports the council’s Economic Recovery Plan, which will help support Renfrewshire’s businesses and support people into employment and training in the wake of COVID-19.

If you think Fair Work Renfrewshire can help you, call the Renfrewshire Citizen’s Advice Bureau on 0141 889 2121 or visit https://www.renfrewshirecab.org.uk/.

 

West Nursery pupils on a litter pick
Becky Sikasa

Musician to host cultural conversations as legacy of abolitionist campaigner’s inspiring words during visits to Paisley are highlighted in new attraction

Renfrewshire’s rich cultures will be celebrated in a series of events to inspire, inform and transform stereotypes as part of Black History Month.

Matt Hickman

Musicians and historians are among those supporting a packed programme during October, aimed at forging stronger cultural connections across the region.

An alliance of organisations – working with Renfrewshire Leisure – is spearheading the work, with events for all ages.

Building on the success of becoming involved in the awareness-raising month for the first time last year, the majority of events will be broadcast via Renfrewshire Leisure’s RenTV channel, Jambo! Radio and social media.

Among the events planned are a service of cultural conversations between musician Matt Hickman, from the indie-rock band Brownbear, and special guests including songwriter Becky Sikasa, singer-songwriter and Jambo! founder George Tah Meh. They will focus on the importance of music and culture for the black, indiginous and other people of colour (BPOC) communities and how race can affect their role within the industry.

There will also be the launch of the Frederick Douglas Google Map walking tour in Paisley. 

Becky Sikasa

The 3km loop is the first in a series of walking tours to be unveiled over the next year as part of the Heritage on Your Doorstep Project, funded by Museums Galleries Scotland. It includes five locations where Frederick Douglass, the influential abolitionist campaigner, gave speeches in Paisley, heavily influencing public opinion.

Black History Month events in Renfrewshire are being organised by The Ethnic Communities Cultural Steering Group, an alliance which co-produces, programmes, and curates work relevant to the region’s ethnic community. Among those involved are School of African Cultures, Inspiring Families, Jambo! Radio, Action For Culture and Ethics, Kairos+, University of the West of Scotland, Engage Renfrewshire, Sewing2gether All Nations and Renfrewshire Leisure’s Cultural Services team.

Councillor Lisa-Marie Hughes, Chair of Renfrewshire Leisure, said: “Our programme of events to mark Black History Month will be both inspiring and informative. We are extremely proud of what the steering group is achieving.

“We believe strongly that the rich cultures which make up the communities of modern Renfrewshire should be celebrated. There is no place for ignorance, inequality or racism in our communities. These events highlight that, showing how our region is a better place because of the diversity of our communities, while also shining a spotlight on some of the issues that people face.

“This will be an enlightening programme that I would encourage as many people as possible to get involved with. Our thanks to all who have committed to it already.”

Other events planned included:

  • The launch of a podcast series by students at the University of the West of Scotland, focusing on the power of stories and storytelling to disrupt stereotypes to advance equality. This is based on a ‘Human Library’ approach focusing on the theme ‘Proud to Be’.
  • Sunday Continental: A brunchtime boogie for people of all ages with tunes from some great Scottish musicians.
  • The presentation of highlights from the Pen Pals project, which has forged connections between children of African heritage and those from Syrian migrant families.
  • A Black History Month-themed book display in Paisley Central Library and a promotion of influential authors on the Renfrewshire Libraries website.
  • The promotion of partner programmes, including Kairos Women+, who are producing a Kairos Chronicle Black History Month Special in October 2021 with articles celebrating black lives in Renfrewshire and beyond.

The programme is funded by support from Future Paisley and Engage Renfrewshire.

Alan McNiven, Chief Executive of Engage Renfrewshire, said: “We are delighted to be supporting Renfrewshire’s Black History Month programme, which is a great example of what can be achieved through collaboration.

“We know that diversity enriches communities. The Ethnic Cultural Steering Group is an inspiring alliance, bringing people of all cultures and backgrounds together in the same way that the events planned over the next month will.

“The pandemic has shown us how important it is to work together, and at Engage we will continue to support community partnerships and collaborative working, because this is what makes communities stronger. We’re very excited to be supporting the Black History Month programme – it reflects our commitment to championing equality, diversity and inclusivity in our local communities.”

For full details about the Black History Month programme of events in Renfrewshire, go to https://www.renfrewshireleisure.com/renfrewshires-black-history-month-cultural-programme-2021/

gryffe

Councillors in Renfrewshire have agreed to install GPS signage along the banks of the River Gryffe as part of a drive to improve water safety.

Seven new signs will be placed at six potentially dangerous areas along the river and will have a designated code which allows emergency responders to know exactly where a distress call is coming from.

gryffe

It is one of the first actions of the Renfrewshire Water Safety Working Group which brings together Renfrewshire Council, Renfrewshire Leisure, Police Scotland, Scottish Fire and Rescue Service, Scottish Ambulance Service and Open Water Rescue, and formalises the ongoing work to improve water safety in Renfrewshire.

The enhanced safety measures at the River Gryffe follow the tragic death of a young boy earlier this year at this location and the new measures have been implemented following discussions with his family, local community members and Community Councils.

With assistance from the Glasgow Humane Society, temporary life belts, poles and throw ropes have already been located on the riverbanks and these are regularly checked by the community and have been replaced by the society when any issues have arisen.

The new GPS signs will add to this equipment and new permanent life belts, throw ropes and ‘Danger – Deep Water’ signs will also be installed by the Council.

Councillor Marie McGurk, Convener of Renfrewshire Council’s Communities, Housing and Planning Policy Board, said: “It’s important that young people know how dangerous open water swimming can be and the tragic accident this summer was a harrowing reminder to avoid swimming in locations like these.

“We want to make sure though that these areas are as safe as they can be if people ignore this advice and the new GPS signage will mean the emergency services can respond as quickly as possible should they be needed.

“It’s an important first step for our new working group and I’m pleased that we’ve created this partnership approach to ensure that we can give as much information to young people as possible and equip them with the knowledge to stay safe and out of the water.”

Where the equipment is located on land not in Council ownership, liaison will take place with landowner wherever possible, and the Council has committed to working with the community and landowner to assist with any damage to the life-saving equipment.

The Renfrewshire Water Safety Working Group will also continue to work closely as a partnership to educate young people about the dangers of open water swimming and will deliver presentations to schools, as well as in-person talks with local young people at known spots for open water swimming.

Renfrewshire Council’s green credentials have been further boosted by the introduction of 14 new electric vans and two electric buses to its fleet.

The new zero-emission vehicles can cover up to 200 miles per charge, have reduced maintenance costs and can be linked to existing technology within the fleet which monitors their performance.

As part of Renfrewshire’s climate change commitments, the vehicles will replace diesel versions as the Council aims to transform a fleet that now contains 119 fully electric vehicles – almost one-third of the entire fleet.

Ultra-low carbon fuel is currently used in all vehicles and alternative fuels, including hydrogen, are also being proactively explored to identify their benefits and viability for inclusion in the future replacement programmes.

Councillor Cathy McEwan, Convener of Renfrewshire Council’s Infrastructure, Land and Environment Policy Board, said: “Climate change is a key priority of this Council and is considered in every decision that we make now and in the future.

“Transforming our fleet into one that creates zero-emissions will take time, but I’m delighted that almost one-third is now fully electric and these new vehicles are a great step in the right direction.”

The new electric vans will be used to support the Building Services teams as they carry out upgrades and repairs across the area, while the buses are already supporting the Social Transport service.

Councillor Marie McGurk, Convener of Renfrewshire Council’s Communities, Housing and Planning Policy Board, said: “It’s important that, wherever we can, we try to reduce our emissions and replacing diesel vehicles with electric is something that we’re committed to doing wherever possible.

“The new vehicles have a great range to allow our teams to travel across Renfrewshire while not negatively affecting the environment and I look forward to seeing them out on the roads helping our teams carry out key public services.”

In 2019, Renfrewshire Council declared a climate emergency in Renfrewshire and a working group was set up with members of all political parties to make recommendations on how to make Renfrewshire carbon neutral by 2030.

The Climate Change Action Fund has been created to support innovative projects and initiatives being developed by Council services in response to the climate emergency.

The Council has committed £1million to the fund, with the electric vehicle replacement programme receiving £258,000 to purchase the new zero-emission vans.

For more information on the Council’s work to tackle climate change in Renfrewshire, visit www.renfrewshire.gov.uk/climatechange.

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Paisley residents and students have been thanked for attending a temporary testing site set up to reduce COVID-19 rates in the area.

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More than 400 (434) people took a test at the COVID-19 community testing site in the Paisley Centre between Tuesday 14 September and Saturday 25 September, with 8 positive cases being found and 669 lateral flow testing kits also given out.

The drop-in testing centre was open to anyone with no COVID-19 symptoms who lived, worked or studied in Paisley. It was run and staffed by Renfrewshire Council.

Chris Dalrymple, the council’s chief environmental health officer, said: “I would like to thank everyone who came along to our Paisley testing centre and took a test.

“Asymptomatic testing is helping to stop the spread of COVID-19 in Renfrewshire. One in three people with the virus have no symptoms. By taking a test or picking up a testing kit from our centre, you have helped to protect your loved ones and your community.”

The tests used at the centre were lateral flow tests. These are quick tests that are processed on site and see results returned via text message within 45 minutes.