Paisley Fireworks 2019

The skies above Paisley Abbey are set to be lit up with a dazzling fireworks display on Saturday 2 November.

Thousands are expected to don hats, scarves and gloves and head into Paisley town centre to watch the beautiful array of catherine wheels, rockets and sparklers on display backed by a soundtrack of popular 90s classic hits.

Paisley Fireworks 2019

Gus from Pulse FM will welcome crowds with music and banter from 6.30pm before the fireworks get underway at 7pm lasting approximately 20 minutes.

Paisley’s winter events programme will continue with the town’s Christmas Lights Switch-On on Saturday 16 November. There will be plenty of Christmas family fun including Christmas Choir concerts, Santa’s Grotto and the chance to meet Santa’s reindeer. Visitors will also be able to enjoy exciting street artists, fantastic performances on the live stage and even head along to the festive roller disco.

The festive fun will also extend across Renfrewshire with Christmas Lights Switch-Ons in Renfrew on Saturday 23 November and Johnstone on Saturday 30 November. The town centre also sees the return of the WinterFest event from 23 November until 30 December, run by Paisley First, featuring an outdoor ice rink, LEGO Paisley Penguin Parade Trail and plenty of festive fun.

For more information about Paisley Fireworks Spectacular, visit: https://paisley.is/featured_event/paisley-fireworks-spectacular/

DIRTY FEET DANCE CO

Laura Forbes had never fully been out of her wheelchair before participating in aerial workshops as part of this year’s Paisley Halloween Festival, but next week she will perform 100ft in the air in front of Paisley’s iconic Abbey alongside her Dirty Feet Dance Company family.

The Paisley-based Dirty Feet Dance Company aims to create opportunities for disabled and non-disabled people and carers to enjoy, express and fulfil their potential through dance. They have been working with professional performers from Scotland’s leading aerial dance company All or Nothing, on the ‘Into the Dark’ show which is taking place as part of this year’s Paisley Halloween Festival on Friday 25 and Saturday 26 October.

DIRTY FEET DANCE CO

During the workshops the group have been given the opportunity to take to the sky in special aerial harnesses to allow them to express themselves in the air.

Laura Forbes (40), joined Dirty Feet Dance Company in 2013 and this is the first time she has tried anything like this. She said: “I’ve never been fully out of the wheelchair before, when I get lifted in the harness it’s an amazing feeling, it’s freedom.

“Before I first went up in the air I was scared but after the first time in the harness I just loved it. It gives me a total sense of freedom out of my wheelchair. If there’s something I’ve learned from this experience it’s that I won’t let being scared stop me from trying something new.”

“I can’t wait for us all to perform at next week’s festival. When we all come together we can do anything and achieve anything – we’re all like family.”

DIRTY FEET DANCE CO

Clare Easdon (37) has been a member of the group since 2006. She said: “It feels amazing when you’re up in the air. I know I’m a wheelchair user but I don’t feel disabled when I’m up there. Being part of Dirty Feet Dance Company lets me try new experiences – this is the first time I’ve ever done aerial and I love it. I think it’s amazing what we’re able to do as wheelchair users.”

During the workshops the performers are able to use either a full body or sitting harness attached to a pully rope system to give them the opportunity to see how their bodies react in the air.

Ruth Foster, Co-director of Dirty Feet Dance Company, said: “It gives the performers a real sense of weightlessness and allows them the chance to explore their range of motion in a new platform and artform which has been a great experience for everyone.

“It’s within their power how high to go. They can stay a few feet off the ground or can ascend all the way up to the ceiling. They are in complete control of their movements in the air.”

Marie Williamson, aerial instructor and performer at All or Nothing, said: “The system we use gives them the opportunity to stretch out and discover their movement for themselves.

“From my point of view it’s an incredible thing to be part of – what I can see them get from it is fantastic. They all have such great characters and a real ‘do it’ attitude. They are very determined to show what they can do. I think people will be surprised by what they’ll see.”

This is one of a series of workshops taking place as part of the Paisley Halloween Festival pairing professional performance companies with local community groups to give them the opportunity to learn new skills and be involved in the town’s major events programme.

The award-winning Paisley Halloween Festival is widely regarded as one of the best events of its kind in the UK. This year’s event takes on a Dark Circus theme and promises to be the biggest yet with internationally acclaimed outdoor theatre specialists, Cirque Bijou, helping to deliver an extended programme of performances to thrill, chill and enthral.

In addition to the daring aerial performances visitors will be captivated by the mass costumed parade through Scotland’s largest town featuring giant animated puppets, frightening floats and a cast of spooky circus characters. There will also be bizarre street theatrics, a ticketed silent disco and a fantastic array of family-friendly activities taking place in locations throughout the town centre over the two-day event.

The Paisley Halloween Festival, which was supported in 2018 through the Year of Young People event fund, was awarded £16,950 of National Programme funding from EventScotland for this year’s event.

Key partners from across Renfrewshire have joined forces to carry out a six-week intervention in Paisley town centre as part of a national campaign to build safer and stronger communities.

Led by Police Scotland, the Your Home, Your Street, Our Community programme is supported by Renfrewshire Council, Engage Renfrewshire, the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service, Renfrewshire Leisure and the Renfrewshire Health and Social Care Partnership, alongside Paisley First, and sets out to tackle the issues that matter to local residents.

A survey was carried out inviting all local residents and businesses to have their say on how to make the town centre safer and the partners have come together to create an action plan to tackle the main issues.

It will address perceived problems including antisocial behaviour, drug offences and night-time safety, with actions such as additional police and warden patrols, mobile CCTV, taxi marshalling at weekends and open days for young people to showcase the youth activities available.

A fuller list of the actions set to be carried out can be found on the council website.

Chief Superintendent Alan Murray, Divisional Commander of Police Scotland Renfrewshire & Inverclyde Division, said: “We want local residents, businesses and visitors to Paisley town centre to play an active part in highlighting and addressing safety concerns within this community.

“Thank you to everyone who filled out the survey highlighting their main concerns and we will now work closely with our partners to address them over the coming weeks.

“By working together, we are aiming to improve services, reduce crime and provide a safe and pleasant environment for members of the public coming into the town centre.”

Paisley town centre is the latest area to benefit from the programme following successful interventions in Shortroods, Erskine, Ferguslie and Gallowhill, where the work carried out noted a significant decrease in the issues initially identified by residents in those areas.

The most recent intervention in Shortroods saw 74.5% of respondents, an increase of 17.5%, stating they felt Shortroods was a fairly good, good or very good place to live, 65% of residents now feeling safe in their neighbourhoods, an increase of 31.5%, and more than 86% felt safe in their homes thanks to the work of the programme.

Councillor Marie McGurk, Convener of Renfrewshire Council’s Communities, Housing and Planning Policy Board, said: “This programme has been successful across Renfrewshire already and we’re confident we will see similar results within Paisley town centre as we work together to make the area safer.

“The action plan considers what the local community have told us the main issues are and we are allocating our resources specifically to tackle these problems, with the aim of bringing a tangible difference to the perception of safety that our residents and businesses can see happening across the six-week period.

“While we won’t completely solve every issue in six weeks, we will certainly make a positive difference to the town centre and ensure that is a safer, more welcoming place for people to live, work and visit and we’ll support the community to continue the improvements once the intervention period is over.”

For more information on the programme and the Paisley town centre action plan, visit www.renfrewshire.gov.uk/YourHomeYourStreet.

Renfrewshire’s flagship environmental campaign Team Up to Clean Up has achieved national recognition at the COSLA Excellence awards.

Team Up to Clean Up on stage at COSLA Awards

The partnership campaign between the council and the local community took home top honours in in the ‘Strong and Sustainable Communities’ category, beating formidable projects from Stirling Council and Dundee City Council in the process.

Author Ross McKenzie and illustrator Neil Slorance host a reading of The Clumps' Big Mess

The campaign has transformed local communities and injected a sense of pride into neighbourhoods across the area, with litter picks increasing by 474% in the first full year.

Through print, digital and social media promotion, the campaign has reached more than 4.4 million people to promote its key messages around litter, dog fouling, recycling and road cleanliness.

Stand out moments from the campaign have been the annual Big Spring Clean and Spotless September events, in which more than 4000 volunteers have taken part, the creation of children’s book The Clumps’ Big Mess, which was given to more than 14,000 pupils, and the Team Up to Clean Up caddies which give communities the tools to make a positive difference to their area.

Councillor Cathy McEwan, Convener of Renfrewshire Council’s Infrastructure, Land and Environment Policy Board, said: “I’m over the moon for everyone involved with the campaign that we’ve been recognised with a national award.

“It’s an award not only for the fantastic council staff who put their all into making this campaign a success, but for the community who volunteer their time and effort to make their neighbourhoods better.

“The campaign strives to make Renfrewshire a more attractive place to live, work and visit and this award shows that it is working, and local people are engaged with what we are trying to achieve.

“We’re going to build on our achievements so far and I can’t wait to work even closer with our communities to make Team Up to Clean Up successful for years to come.”

The COSLA Excellence Awards aim to recognise the best in local government and showcase those projects that are breaking new ground, with more than 200 projects nominated to the awards this year.

A COSLA spokesperson said: “Team Up to Clean Up and everyone at Renfrewshire Council should be proud of this achievement.

“‘Strong and Sustainable Communities’ has always been a difficult category to succeed in and the team were up against some well-established, innovative projects.

“What stood out about Team Up to Clean Up was that it both regenerated the local environment and managed its resources responsibly, all whilst making Renfrewshire a better place, to live, work and visit.”

The Team Up to Clean Up campaign forms part of a £2.5million investment across five years to make a real difference to the cleanliness of the streets in Renfrewshire and improve the local environment.

As well as the support from local communities, an enhanced programme of operational activity is underway to clean gullies, sweep the roads and repair the roads infrastructure to ensure the campaign is a joint approach between the council and its residents.

For more information and to find out how to get involved, visit www.renfrewshire.gov.uk/teamuptocleanup.

One of Renfrewshire’s specially-named gritters William Wall-ice headed home to Elderslie as the weather prepares to lay siege to Renfrewshire this winter.

Nine gritting machines will cover more than 800km of roads across Renfrewshire, with more than 4000 tonnes of grit ready to keep Renfrewshire moving throughout the winter period.

Residents will once again be able to track Renfrewshire’s gritters on the council website as they work day and night, when required, to keep the roads network free of snow and ice.

This forms part of the area’s #RenReady Ready for Winter campaign which aims to make residents and workers in Renfrewshire aware of how to prepare for winter weather conditions, while also highlighting the work of frontline council staff who keep services operating whatever the weather.

Last year, a campaign to #NameOurGritters saw more than 8000 votes cast online to name Renfrewshire’s gritters after famous faces and places, with Ploughlo Grittini, Tony Gritzpatrick and Paisleigh being three of the winning entries.

STV Weatherman Sean Batty was also chosen by the local community to have his own gritter and he’s looking forward to seeing Thawin’ Batty tackle the forthcoming conditions, should he be needed.

Sean said: “People may have read articles recently warning of a cold and snowy winter, however at this stage this is merely speculation as forecasting specific details this far in advance is impossible. At present Met Office computer models are forecasting a milder start to winter than usual, however even if this is the case it would likely still be interspersed by colder spells, with frost and snow.

“Last year most parts of the country experienced very little snowfall, however in the previous year there were many days with snow and ice well into spring. Even with current forecasts indicating milder than average conditions, people should always be prepared for the risk of floods, storms and snowfall as we head into the winter months.”

#RenReady also aims to provide information on areas such as how to avoid winter illness and the support the council provides to tenants and residents to keep warm throughout any cold weather snaps and festive debt advice.

Councillor Cathy McEwan, Convener of Renfrewshire Council’s Infrastructure, Land and Environment Policy Board, said: “The winter period can bring a number of challenges for our communities and our staff, but we are doing all we can to prepare in advance of any adverse conditions.

“Our gritting teams are now on standby to treat the roads in advance, and during, any freezing weather, and 540 grit bins will be stocked and available for residents to use throughout the winter period.

“Our website also has detailed information on how to prepare yourself, your home and your community throughout the winter, and our social media channels will provide updates too.

“I also want to thank our staff who do a fantastic job keeping our services operating whatever the weather and we’ll do all we can to support them as this winter approaches.”

For more information, visit www.renfrewshire.gov.uk/readyforwinter.

EVENT INVITATION
West College Scotland: We Do Care
Tuesday 22 October, Abercorn Building, Paisley

17:00 hrs :Arrival, Registration and Exhibition
17:30 hrs – 19:00 hrs: Informative Presentations

 

West College Scotland is Scotland’s largest college provider of online learning. We offer a wide range of flexible childcare, health and social care courses which you can study in a way that suits you. You might be in a job and looking to improve your qualifications or you may want to study in your leisure time.
At this event we will help you to create tailored learning packages to match your needs – it’s your learning journey after all!

With online learning, training, part-time and full-time courses in childcare, health and social care we can support your journey from induction to registration in Care. For many courses no qualifications or experience are necessary.

Come along and hear from our Sector Experts, previous students and meet the Team who will tell you about our special offers, advise you about your study choices and assist you with enrolment.

Register here: http://bit.ly/33tvqDZ

SPREE FESTIVAL 2019-5767

Paisley’s annual festival of music, comedy and more gets under way tonight – with a special tribute to one of the town’s most famous musical sons, Gerry Rafferty.

The Baker St singer’s legacy will be honoured with a sold-out Gerry Rafferty Songbook night fronted by Roddy Hart, Emma Pollock and Gerry’s long-time friend and former Stealers Wheel collaborator Rab Noakes.

SPREE FESTIVAL 2019-5767

The show kicks off nine days of Spree action – the bulk of which will take place in a specially-erected Spiegeltent next to Paisley Gilmour Street station in the town’s County Square.

The Spree festival is now in its eighth year and has helped Paisley become established as one of Scotland’s go-to destinations for major events.

The festival is organised by Renfrewshire Council, programmed by Regular Music, and sponsored by Tennent’s Lager.

SPREE FESTIVAL 2019-5767

Many of the shows are already sold out but there’s still time to get your hands on the last remaining tickets for others at www.thespree.co.uk, in person at the box office at InCube shop at 9b Gilmour St, or on the door at The Spiegeltent.

Speaking ahead of tonight’s show, musician, broadcaster and long-time Rafferty fan Roddy Hart said: “We are super-excited and looking forward to kicking off the Spree festival with a collection of Gerry Rafferty’s best-loved songs.

“The Spree is an amazing festival – it’s great to have these events outside of Glasgow and Edinburgh as it brings music and talent to whole array of people who might not have access to it otherwise. There’s a fantastic selection of singers and artists and it’s a very exciting thing to be part of.”

SPREE FESTIVAL 2019-5767

The Spree opening night also includes late-night comedy including Fred MacAulay and Mark Nelson in The Spiegeltent, with tickets still available at the door.

Saturday will see the town centre invaded by the Mods as the annual ModStuff event run by local promoters LNP Promotions returns with a free afternoon show – including the ever-popular scooter rideout – followed by a sold-out evening gig.

Rising stars of Scottish indie-rock The Snuts play The Spiegeltent on Sunday evening – with all tickets for the 450-capacity venue being snapped up in just two hours earlier this summer.

Highlights during the week include Hue and Cry (Mon 14th), Glasvegas only UK full-band show of the year (Tues 15th), former Super Furry Animals frontman Gruff Rhys (Wed 16th) and soul legend PP Arnold, performing alongside Ocean Colour Scene guitarist Steve Cradock (Thur 17th).

SPREE FESTIVAL 2019-5767

Next weekend sees Karine Polwart’s Scottish Songbook, and more late-night comedy featuring Scott Gibson and Gary Little (Fri 18th) before a lively last night with comedian Jerry Sadowitz followed by a closing party with the inventors of rockgrass Hayseed Dixie (Sat 19th).

Paisley Arts Centre will also host a diverse programme including Lost Map’s Lost Weekend (Sun 13th) with the Pictish Trail, a Paisley in Song night fronted by Michael Cassidy (Thurs 17th), and a show by ex-Arab Strap mainman Malcolm Middleton (Sat 19th).

The week will also see The Wee Spree – a special programme designed for kids to run over the October school week, featuring Lego, circus skills, comedy, and dance-along Disney films.

Sold-out shows include the Stramash ceilidh with local Gaelic music group Fèis Phaislig – promoting the town’s contribution to Gaelic language culture ahead of hosting the Royal National Mòd in exactly three years time.

And the Spree for All fringe festival will take the show on the road to towns and villages across Renfrewshire, with gigs taking place in local venues in Johnstone, Renfrew, Lochwinnoch and Kilbarchan, as well as a packed programme in Paisley’s Bungalow Bar and Old Swan Inn.

The Spree for All also takes in the Paisley Art Institute’s 131st annual exhibition – this year taking place in a formerly-empty unit in the Piazza shopping centre (right next to The Spiegeltent) while Paisley Museum is undergoing a £42m transformation.

Louisa Mahon, Renfrewshire Council’s head of communications, marketing and events, said: “The Spree has grown year on year with Paisley now firmly established as a key destination on Scotland’s festival map.

“Ticket sales this year have been by far our best yet – we look forward to welcoming thousands of visitors to Paisley over the next nine days, which will be great news for local traders.

“Paisley town centre is home to many great places to eat, drink and shop and we and would encourage festival-goers to Spend Local and sample everything the town has to offer.”

The Spree is the first of a bumper run of major events in the area this winter, with huge crowds expected for Paisley Halloween Festival – one of the largest of its kind – on 25-26 October.

Paisley’s annual fireworks display is on Saturday 2 November, followed by Christmas Lights Switch-ons in Paisley (Sat 16th), Renfrew (Sat 23rd) and Johnstone (Sat 30th), while local business improvement district Paisley First’s annual Winterfest event will take over Paisley town centre for five weeks from 24 November.

provost awards

Renfrewshire’s inspiring local heroes are set to be rewarded as nominations for the Provost’s Community Awards open for 2020.

provost awards

Anyone who lives or works in Renfrewshire is invited to nominate in any of the following six categories:

  • Community Volunteer (sponsored by Glasgow Airport Ltd)
  • Community Group (sponsored by City Gate Construction)
  • Sporting Achievement (sponsored by ACRE Industrial)
  • Employee of the Year (sponsored by UNISON Renfrewshire)
  • Carers Award (sponsored by former Provost Nancy Allison)
  • Arts and Culture Award (sponsored by Renfrewshire Council)

Renfrewshire’s Provost Lorraine Cameron said: “It’s an honour to host the Community Awards again and take the opportunity to pay tribute to our local unsung heroes.

“I meet many people who really go the extra mile without looking for any reward or recognition in my role as Provost, but these awards come from the community themselves, demonstrating that the hard work these groups and individuals do is not going unnoticed.

“I can’t wait to read the nominations so don’t miss out on the chance to nominate and start sending them in now.”

The deadline for entries to all categories is Friday 6 December.

The Provost will be joined by the award sponsors and other local elected members to choose the winners who will be invited, along with their nominator, to the awards ceremony on Friday 13 March 2020 at the Normandy Hotel in Renfrew.

For more information, and to submit your nomination, visit http://www.renfrewshire.gov.uk/provostawards2020, email provostawards@renfrewshire.gov.uk or call 0141 618 7102.

Ferguslie ELCC Crafts 2Y9A9588

Renfrewshire Council are recruiting for a number of nursery jobs across the area.

Laura Sheridan, who changed her career to work in early years says it means she is making a big difference to children’s lives. 

Ferguslie ELCC Crafts 2Y9A9588

She said: “I started working in early years as a supply worker, but it wasn’t long before I gained a permanent post as an Early Learning and Childcare Officer (ELCO) at Glendee ELCC.

“Every day is different in a nursery and each child is an individual with their own ways of doing things. That’s why we provide them with a range of experiences and options at Glendee. We have a free-flow environment, which means the children can take part in the same experiences outdoors as they do indoors. They can choose where they want to go and what they want to do.

“Our centre has strong links with the local care home and groups of children visit the residents each week as part of their intergenerational learning. We also have a forest kindergarten that we visit to explore and learn about the natural world. These trips help children to develop team building and understand the risks in their environment.

“I’m also responsible for a group of children within the centre and I track their developmental milestones. If a child needs additional support, we will work with parents and outside agencies to make sure we have the right support in place for them.

“I’ve been working in early years for more than six years now and I love it. Making a difference in children’s lives is very important to me and I am so glad I changed my career to do it. I used to work in the travel industry, but I’ve always wanted to work with children. So, after my son was born, I decided to head off to college and get my HNC in Childhood Practice.

“You get paid well, have flexibility on when you can take your holidays and have a rewarding job. I’d recommend it to anyone who has a passion for children and their learning and development.”

To apply for either the Early Learning and Childcare Officer or Early Learning and Childcare Support Worker jobs, visit www.myjobscotland.gov.uk.

period poverty

Free sanitary products are now available in the toilets at Renfrewshire Leisure run Town Halls and libraries, and in the bathrooms and accessible toilets at its sports and leisure centres.
Nearly one in five women in Scotland have experienced period poverty, with 12% of girls saying they have resorted to using rags and socks during their time of the month.

period poverty
Funding for the free sanitary products has been provided by the Scottish Government as part of its efforts to tackle period poverty in Scotland.

Councillor Michelle Campbell, Renfrewshire Council’s Young Persons Champion, said: “Period poverty affects people across Renfrewshire, with some having to choose between feeding themselves and their families, and buying sanitary products.

“We believe everyone has the right to a dignified life and we want to do everything we can to help anyone who finds themselves facing period poverty.

“The sanitary products we are putting into our community venues are free and available to anyone who needs them. Take whatever you need, whenever you need it.”

The council started offering free sanitary products in schools last year and supplies are also available in community groups, including STAR Project, Active Communities, Home-Start Renfrewshire, Renfrewshire Citizens Advice Bureau and Engage Renfrewshire, who can give to anyone who needs them.

period poverty
The distribution of products to community groups is carried out by FareShare.

Heather Kay, project coordinator at STAR Project, said: “We firmly believe no person should have to experience period poverty and therefore make sanitary products readily available in our toilets. We also give people the opportunity to take boxes of sanitary products from our Community Pantry.

“Being able to receive free sanitary products through the Fareshare scheme is fantastic. Our members have benefited from it, with one person recently commenting she ‘no longer dreads that time of the month where I need to decide between food or pads’.”
The launch of the products in Renfrewshire community facilities coincides with Challenge Poverty Week, which runs until Sunday 13 October.

The week aims to highlight the reality of poverty in Scotland and the work being done to tackle it, showcase the solutions to poverty and increase public support for action to solve it.
Chairperson of Renfrewshire Leisure, Councillor Lisa-Marie Hughes said: “There is an increasing awareness of the impact period poverty has on the lives of many people in society.

“We share a responsibility to ensure everyone has a decent standard of living and at Renfrewshire Leisure we feel it’s important that free sanitary products are easily available to those who need them.
“Our sports and leisure facilities are popular places where many people go and we hope there will be a good uptake of the free products being made available.”

Other activities which have taken place in Renfrewshire during Challenge Poverty Week include the launch of STAR Project’s Community Fridge Recipe Book and a collection of toiletry products by Active Communities to highlight and tackle hygiene poverty.

For more information on where free sanitary products are available in Renfrewshire, visit www.renfrewshire.gov.uk/periodpoverty
If your community group would like to receive free sanitary products from the council they should contact FareShare by emailing linda@moveon.org.uk