Pipe Band Promo 30.6.22-0002

Renfrew’s Robertson Park will welcome some of Scotland’s top piping talent this July for a new event in Renfrewshire’s events calendar.

The inaugural Renfrew Pipe Band Competition, taking place on Saturday 23 July, will see pipers and drummers from across Scotland fill the town with the sound of bagpipes and the beat of drums.

Pipe Band Promo 30.6.22-0002

The free-to-attend event brings a full day of family entertainment to the park from 12 noon to 5pm – including aerial workshops, a food village, and a farmer’s market.

Judges from the Royal Scottish Pipe Band Association will be judging the bands on their performances across the various grades. Spectators will be able to enjoy the performances during the day, with the March Past at 5pm followed by the prize-giving with the Chieftain.

This year’s event Chieftain will be poet Shaun Moore, the Tannahill Makar for Renfrewshire. He said: “It’s a big honour to have been asked to be Chieftain at the first pipe band competition in Renfrew.

Pipe Band Promo 30.6.22-0002

“As a member of the local creative community I enjoy making links with performers from other disciplines and sharing in the great work we all do to showcase talent in our local area and encourage wellbeing and pride in our communities.

“I know how big a day it is for the competitors and how much preparation they’ll have put in and I’m looking forward to joining them for what I’m sure will be a fantastic day out.”

Visitors should note there will be no public parking at the event. Free parking will be available a 5-10 minute walk away at Trinity High School, Glebe Street.

Pipe Band Promo 30.6.22-0002

Public transport to the park is also available with a number of bus stops conveniently located around Robertson Park on Inchinnan Road and Paisley Road. McGill’s run a number of services through Renfrew, including the environmentally friendly Switch 26 and Switch 23 services.

More information about the event can be found at www.renfrewshire.gov.uk

Family walking in Castle Semple Woodlands - Clyde Muirshiel Regional Park

Renfrewshire is the place to be for family days out and events this summer.

With the school summer holidays underway, there are lots of ways to keep the kids entertained at the many great attractions, events and outdoor spaces the area has to offer.

Summer events in Renfrewshire begin on Saturday 2 July with Paisley’s annual Sma’ Shot Day.

Charleston Drummer Tony Lawler at Abbey Close, Paisley

The event, which is one of the world’s oldest workers’ festivals, will see a bumper programme of live performances, family entertainment and workshops.

Enjoy the colourful parade from 12noon as it makes its way from Brodie Park through the town centre. Once it arrives at Abbey Close, visitors can see the spectacular Burning of the Cork – a highlight of the day’s celebrations.

Then, get ready for the skirl of the bagpipes and the beat of the drum at Renfrew Pipe Band Competition on Saturday 23 July.

 

Renfrew’s Robertson Park will play proud host to its first ever pipe band competition, which will also feature aerial workshops, a farmer’s market, food village and much more.

The beautiful Clyde Muirshiel Regional Park has an extensive calendar of activities, including its Summer Kids programme of events for young people every Wednesday during the school holidays.

Castle Semple Loch - Clyde Muirshiel Regional Park

Each week will feature different practical outdoor events, including a variety of guided nature and wildlife walks with park rangers.

The park also offers sailing courses and paddle sport sessions for varying levels of experience.

The nearby RSPB Lochwinnoch Nature Reserve is home to stunning scenery and equally brilliant activities to go wild with the family.

RSPB Lochwinnoch

The reserve is hosting a range of events across several weeks, including scavenger hunts, self-led activity trails and even a special dinosaur hunt.

Guided wildlife walks and pond dipping events will also take place on select days in July and August.

This summer, the Paisley First Business Improvement District is bringing BRICKLIVE’s Fantasy Kingdom to Paisley for a fun, free family day out.

Find amazing brick models located around the town centre on this magical trail, including knights, princesses, wizards and deadly dragons.

BRICKLIVE’s Fantasy Kingdom will run each day over the school holidays until Sunday 14 August. Collect a trail leaflet from The Paisley Centre or Piazza Shopping Centre and begin the quest.

Family favourites Funbox are coming to Johnstone Town Hall on Saturday 16 July for a Jungle Party.

Family walking in Castle Semple Woodlands - Clyde Muirshiel Regional Park

Full of classic singalongs from Anya, Kevin and Bonzo (formerly of The Singing Kettle), this show will be jumbo-sized join-in fun for all the family. Tickets can be purchased via the OneRen box office.

The Paisley.is website is a one-stop shop to see the best things to do across Renfrewshire, including spectacular events, attractions and places to visit over the summer.

Women in STEM News Item

As part of International Women Into Engineering Day on 23 June 2022, West College Scotland is launching the next phase of activity in their Women into STEM project.

 

The project – which is led by West College Scotland in partnership with Forth Valley College and Equate Scotland – is gearing up for an exciting second phase after a full year of encouraging more female representation into Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics roles.!

Women in STEM News Item

Funded by Skills Development Scotland (SDS) the dynamic initiative were quick to welcome Equate Scotland and Young Enterprise Scotland (YES) on board after launching in April 2021.  Equate have been busy engaging with employers and apprentices and YES have delivered engagement activities in secondary schools in Renfrewshire and Forth Valley. 

 

During February and March 2022, YES ran eight virtual STEM workshops (four in Renfrewshire and four in Forth Valley) for S5 and S6 pupils. The workshops were interactive, with guest speakers from STEM related sectors. The overall purpose was to raise awareness and encourage the pupils to create marketing messages to help their peer group consider STEM subjects and career pathways with confidence.

 

The sessions culminated in an online ‘Women into STEM’ showcase and schools involved  included: Trinity High School and Paisley Grammar School in Renfrewshire and Braes High School in Forth Valley – whose fantastic and thought provoking STEM Marketing Campaigns will be available on the new landing page.

 

The Women into STEM Project – which will run to 31 march 2023 – has been working with Equate Scotland to work with stakeholders, employers and partners to develop awareness, access, and participation for young women to thrive within STEM activities and pathways. The initiative also hopes to develop sustainable Apprenticeship Pathways, and recruit, prepare, and progress female pupils aged between 16-24 into STEM careers – including into Engineering Modern Apprenticeships – across the West of Scotland and the Forth Valley area.

 

Working alongside local employers such as Howdens, Scotrail, Diodes, Alexander Dennis Ltd, Ineos, and Petrofac, Women in STEM has been looking to understand and challenge stereotypes and develop the early years parts of this pipeline, to impact upon attitudinal and cultural change. The project hopes to make inclusive workplaces the norm not the exception and support female apprentices to build their peer support network with access to role models at the very start of their career, encouraging the apprentices to think about the challenges and opportunities, developing their confidence and the skills to succeed.

 

Morven McColl, Programme Executive, Young Enterprise Scotland, said: “Over the course of four weeks of the virtual STEM workshops, I delivered workshops to support the girls in developing a marketing campaign that would encourage more young women into STEM based careers. It was a delight to work with these fantastic, driven young women through the project and I was so impressed by the levels of dedication, creativity and enthusiasm shown. The final marketing campaigns were of a high standard; I think this demonstrates why getting young people themselves to create messaging that will attract their peers is so valuable. Who better to influence girls interested in STEM than their peers?”

 

Shona Darroch, HR Business Partner, Diodes Semiconductors GB Ltd, said: “I was delighted to be asked to be part of the Women in Stem project.  We must do all we can to support more women into and returning to STEM related careers and this project gave me and Diodes a chance to work with other companies to share ideas and best practice.  It also was a great way to support our current female engineering apprentices, in what is still a male dominated environment.  But with projects like this, we can hopefully start to even out the gender gap that engineering has.” 

 

Paul Fagan, Head of Employability, West College Scotland said: “Our Partnership recognises that there is an acute gender imbalance in the Scottish manufacturing sector and engineering workforce.  Whilst the gender imbalance is extreme, there are significant opportunities within manufacturing and engineering trades, with the latest Regional Skills Assessment forecasting demand for 5,700 jobs in the west region alone by 2027.  Our project can empower women to access and develop in these valuable jobs, through the development of robust skills pipelines.  For our College and our partners, this positive action reflects a commitment to putting equality and diversity at the core of our delivery.”

 

William Forrest, Operations Manager for Engineering, Forth Valley College, said: “We are delighted to be involved in this exciting initiative in order to encourage more women to consider a career in engineering.  Our world needs engineers to innovate and make changes which improve our lives and reduce our harm to the planet.  This partnership will raise awareness of the wide range of opportunities out there and encourage more young women to be a part of the fourth industrial revolution.”

 

Laura Smith-Gulliver, Training and Development Manager, Equate Scotland said: “The jobs of the future will rely on STEM skills, driven by an innovative and diverse workforce – vital to navigating a post-COVID world, climate change and other global challenges. Improvements in workplace equality are being made – but still persists in the attitudes, actions and processes of employers and society including how girls are encouraged to view their future workplaces and how women in STEM are supported and empowered when they get there. With STEM industries still dominated by men, women can face a challenging working environment – building networks, have fewer role models, and less peer support.”

 

Anyone wishing to find out more about the Women into STEM initiative, should contact Gillian Gray, West College Scotland’s Development Funding Executive – Business, Enterprise & Innovation, on gillian.gray@wcs.ac.uk .

classes june 22

Our 5 week summer courses start this week and are live now to book at https://totnosh.class4kids.co.uk

classes june 22

Friday’s 1.30-2.30pm – preschool (2-5) and a grown up to enjoy together starting Friday 24th June

Saturdays 10-11am – for little chefs aged 4-8 and a grown up to enjoy together starting Saturday 25th June

(Please check all dates as no classes from 15th – 24th July)

Spaces are limited and booking essential so book now to avoid disappointment

#skillsforlife #littlechefs #kidscooking”

Renfrewshire-Council-Leader-visits-CGC
  • Renfrewshire Council Leader reaffirms commitment to create conditions for growth during visit to leading local company

Renfrewshire Council Leader Iain Nicolson saw first-hand the critical role apprenticeships are playing in supporting skills development and local business growth during a visit to City Gate Construction (CGC).

Renfrewshire-Council-Leader-visits-CGC

The Council provides support to 85 Modern Apprentices working in local businesses and with the Council itself across a wide variety of roles including in construction, mechanics, administration and early years education.

CGC are continually recruiting apprentices to support their business growth and encourage young people to join the construction industry.

Formed in 2003 in Renfrewshire, CGC now employ more than 225 people across six UK offices, with an annual turnover in excess of £30million this year.

Toby-Roughton

Re-elected last month, Councillor Nicolson, visited the workshop at CGC’s Linwood headquarters, meeting second year apprentice joiner Liam Russell, from Bishopton, and first year apprentice polisher Danny Dempsey, from Paisley, as well as Toby Roughton, from Barrhead, who is completing work experience prior to starting his apprenticeship in August.

Liam-Russell

“It was really enjoyable to meet the apprentices and hear about the skills they’re learning and projects they are working on,” said Councillor Nicolson. “It’s fantastic that companies like CGC and others across Renfrewshire continue to take on apprentices, recognising the benefits it brings to the young person and their business growth too.

Danny-Dempsey

“We are doing everything we can to ensure the workforce in Renfrewshire have the skills, knowledge and talent they need to support local business growth and bolster the local economy. It’s undoubtedly been a very challenging time for business and throughout the pandemic we worked hard to deliver more than £55million in lifeline grant support.

“Now, we are continuing in our commitment to help local businesses by creating the conditions for growth. Major investment is taking place right across Renfrewshire in skills, innovation and infrastructure.

“This includes the establishment of AMIDS, Scotland’s home of manufacturing innovation and new transport and active travel links to better connect communities to employment. Realising this investment will deliver huge benefits, not least a strong, productive economy, with more jobs and opportunities for local people.”

Councillor-Nicolson-with-Danny-Dempsey

Since its formation, CGC has recruited around 180 Renfrewshire residents and is offering a further seven apprenticeships from August.

Walter Matthews, CGC Facilities Management Operations Director, said: “CGC are committed to nurture young talent in our local communities, offering opportunities for apprenticeships, work placements, training and mentoring to join us on our journey to continued growth and success.”

Armed Forces day

Renfrewshire and Inverclyde residents are being encouraged to attend a ceremony to celebrate our serving military men and women.

Serving troops, veterans and their families will join the Provosts of Renfrewshire and Inverclyde, as well as the Lord-Lieutenant of Renfrewshire, Colonel Peter McCarthy, to mark Armed Forces Day with a service in Paisley Abbey on Saturday 18 June at 10am.

Armed Forces day

A collection will be held after the service with donations going to Bravehound, a charity providing companion dogs and support in training them to former servicemen, women and their families.

Following the service tea and coffee will be provided within the Abbey.

Both Provost’s and the Lord-Lieutenant will then move on to Hawkhead cemetery where they will lay wreaths at the memorial.

Renfrewshire Provost Lorraine Cameron said: “Armed Forces Day is an important event within the Renfrewshire and Inverclyde communities and I’m glad we are able to come together again this year in recognition of the contribution made to our country by members of our Armed Forces.

“I have been honoured to speak with many ex-servicemen and women over the years who have shared their stories and memories and I know how much this event means to them.

“It’s important to show our support and I would encourage as many people as possible to attend.”

As well as the joint service with Inverclyde, Renfrewshire will host a flag raising ceremony on Friday 17 June, at 11am, outside Renfrewshire House.

Renfrew-Community-Hub-Proposal

Residents, businesses and community groups can back a funding bid for a new community hub in Renfrew town centre.

Renfrewshire Council has developed initial proposals which are now being shared with the public ahead of an application to the Levelling Up fund this summer.

The plans set out the refurbishment of the vacant former police station and enhancements at Renfrew Victory Baths to create a combined community facility.

Included in the hub proposals are better pool facilities and a spa and wellness centre to upgrade the offer at the popular baths which celebrated its centenary last year.

There are also plans for the hub to have a regional dance, gymnastics and fitness centre open for all ages and groups.

And alongside new community spaces, it could house a library and learning centre with digital facilities, relocating Renfrew Library into the town centre.

The public’s views will feed into a funding application in the second round of the UK Government fund, which supports investment in local infrastructure and community assets.

If successful, further detailed public consultation would be carried out to refine the proposals.

Chief Economic and Regeneration Officer George Hunter said: “Development of this town centre community hub would be a fantastic facility for local residents and visitors to Renfrew alike and we are keen to hear what people think about the initial plans.

“Complementing what’s on offer at Renfrew Town Hall, the hub would provide inclusive, modern town centre facilities everyone can access, giving people more reasons to spend local in Renfrew and importantly ensure the long-term future of two well-known, historic buildings.

“The Levelling Up fund is a competitive bid process so we are looking for local residents, businesses and community groups to complete the feedback survey and send their support.”

People can read more about the proposals and complete the feedback survey at www.ironsidefarrar.com/renfrew.html

Messages of support are also welcomed – these can be emailed to the project team at strategyandplace@renfrewshire.gov.uk

A public exhibition is also open at Renfrew Victory Baths including weekends from Tuesday 24 May until Monday 6 June (closed Thursday 2 June), with a drop-in session scheduled from 12pm to 5.30pm on Wednesday 1 June where members of the project team will be available to discuss the proposals in person.

The Council secured more than £38million in funding in the first round of the Levelling Up fund towards improved transport links between Paisley and the manufacturing district AMIDS, which represented the third highest award across the UK.

Participants in Renfrewshire Council’s Not Far? Leave the Car campaign can now pick up prizes from OneRen for getting active and using sustainable travel.

Every mile that people travel on foot, by bike, or using public transport will earn a BetterTicket entry into the prize draw, with up to a maximum of twenty per week available per person, and one lucky winner will be drawn at the end of each month.

Prizes worth more than £500 include gym memberships, tickets to a OneRen Arts Performance‍ and adult swim pass‍es, as well as spot prizes of reusable coffee cups, water bottles and OneRen bags.

This adds to discounts and money off from more than 100 local Renfrewshire businesses, all from purely getting active and leaving the car at home.

All people have to do is start tracking their journeys by downloading the free app via www.renfrewshire.gov.uk/leavethecar.

Elaine Lorimer is the lead officer for the Renfrewshire Council project and is delighted with the support for the campaign so far.

Elaine said: “It’s brilliant to see so many people signing up to take part in the campaign as we encourage people to leave the car at home to lower our emissions in Renfrewshire and support people to have healthier, more active lives.

“We’ve connected with more than 100 businesses so people can exchange their points for £5, £10 and £20 gift cards at their favourite local stores, cafes and restaurants.

“Join hundreds of others taking part by downloading the app, leaving the car at home and picking where to spend your prizes.”

OneRen is the local charitable trust in Renfrewshire providing culture, leisure and sporting opportunities to help people enjoy active and healthy lives.

Mark Tokeley, Head of Leisure and Community Services at OneRen, said: “We are delighted to be supporting Renfrewshire Council’s Not Far? Leave the Car campaign.

“As we all play our part in the region’s journey towards net-zero, we must embrace alternatives to using our cars whenever we can.

“As a community charity helping people to leave better, healthier lives, this campaign chimes heavily with our own aims and our team members look forward to meeting the prize-winners, with advice on all types of exercise available at all of our leisure centres.”

For more information on the range of services OneRen deliver, visit oneren.org

Provost-Lorraine-Cameron-and-Council-Leader-Iain-Nicolson

Supporting those most in need and recovering from the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic are two of the priorities for the returning Renfrewshire Council SNP administration following decision on key appointments on Thursday 19 May.

At the first council meeting of the new session following the recent election, Councillor Iain Nicolson was appointed Leader of the Council, with Councillor Jacqueline Cameron appointed as Depute Leader. Councillor Lorraine Cameron and Councillor Cathy McEwan both return as Provost and Depute Provost.

Council Leader Iain Nicolson said:

“We’re delighted to be back to serve our local communities, focusing on the things people have told us matter to them. Supporting those in need and helping tackle some of the impacts of the cost of living are high priorities for my administration and I’m sure all councillors will support our plans to help those most in need. The past two years and the coronavirus pandemic have been one of the biggest challenges we’ve all faced and will have impacted everyone, and I would like to thank all the key workers who continued to provide vital public services, including our NHS workers, during this time and continue to do so. Our key focus will now be on our recovery plans, how we support communities and help our local businesses to grow and thrive.

“We know the local environment is important to our communities and helps people connect with and improves pride in our place. We will continue to invest in our green spaces and parks as well as play our part in tackling climate change. There are undoubtedly challenges ahead but my administration will continue to work hard for Renfrewshire, working with partners and our communities.”

As Council Leader and Depute Council Leader, Councillors Iain Nicolson and Jacqueline Cameron have been appointed as Convener and Depute Convener for the Leadership Board.

Elected members have also been appointed to each of the council’s policy boards. The conveners and depute conveners are:

-Councillor Marie McGurk as Convener and Councillor Robert Innes as Depute Convener for the Communities and Housing Policy Board

-Councillor Andy Steel as Convener and Councillor Michelle Campbell as Depute Convener for the Economy and Regeneration Policy Board

most in need and recovering from the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic are two of the priorities for the returning Renfrewshire Council SNP administration following decision on key appointments on Thursday 19 May.

At the first council meeting of the new session following the recent election, Councillor Iain Nicolson was appointed Leader of the Council, with Councillor Jacqueline Cameron appointed as Depute Leader. Councillor Lorraine Cameron and Councillor Cathy McEwan both return as Provost and Depute Provost.

Council Leader Iain Nicolson said:

-Councillor Emma Rodden as Convener and Councillor Jim Paterson as Depute Convener for the Education and Children’s Services Policy Board

-Councillor John Shaw as Convener and Councillor Fiona Airlie-Nicolson as Depute Convener for the Finance, Resources and Customer Services Policy Board

-Councillor Michelle Campbell as Convener and Councillor Stephen Burns as Depute Convener for the Infrastructure, Land and Environment Policy Board

-Councillor Jim Paterson as Convener and Councillor Bruce MacFarlane as Depute Convener for the Planning and Climate Change Policy Board.

Councillor Andy Doig was appointed as the Convener of the Audit, Risk and Scrutiny Board. The Depute Convener will be appointed at a later date from one of the opposition groups.

vote

Local voters are being encouraged to use their opportunity to cast their vote in the local Council elections in Renfrewshire on Thursday 5 May.

There will be 43 councillors elected across 12 ward areas and those elected will represent Renfrewshire for the next five years.

vote

Polling takes place on Thursday 5 May between 7am and 10pm, with the votes  counted and the results announced on Friday 6 May at the Lagoon Leisure Centre.

People casting their vote at  a polling station should check their poll card as some venues may have changed since the previous election, with information on changes available on the Council website.

People who opted to vote by post but have missed the deadline to send it back are able to hand it in at any Renfrewshire polling station and there is a 10pm deadline for the replacement of lost or spoiled postal votes which can be obtained by calling the Election Office on 0141 618 2300.

Anyone who requires an emergency proxy vote can apply to the Electoral Registration Officer by 5pm on Thursday 5 May 2022 and the application form can be filled out via the Council website.

Alan Russell, Returning Officer for Renfrewshire, said: “I would encourage everyone to have their say and cast their vote on polling day as those elected will represent you for the next five years in Renfrewshire.

“Our polling places will be safe places for you to visit on 5 May, but please make sure you use your polling card to double check where you should vote as some of the venues may have changed.

“This election uses the Single Transferable Vote (STV) system so please make sure you mark your choices in order of preference, i.e., 1, 2, 3 etc – you can choose as many or as few candidates as you wish.

“I’m looking forward to election day as it approaches, and I want to thank all of our staff who are working hard behind-the-scenes to deliver this election smoothly.”

The results will be published on the Council website and social media channels as they are announced on Friday 6 May.

For more information about the election in Renfrewshire, you can visit www.renfrewshire.gov.uk/council-elections-2022.

Ren Labour manifesto launch

Renfrewshire Labour today launched its manifesto for the May 5th Renfrewshire Council election, with a promise to “put Renfrewshire first” and “get the basics right.”

Unveiling its plans for a Labour administration in Renfrewshire over the next five years, the party outlined a raft of policies in the areas of education, the cost-of-living crisis, the economy and work, housing, local environment, health and social care, and transport.

Ren Labour manifesto launch

Launching the manifesto, Chair of Renfrewshire Labour’s Local Government Committee Margaret McCormick said:

“Renfrewshire has been going backwards under the current SNP Council. They have been content to manage decline. They have broken promises, cut services, and continuously wasted taxpayers’ money. They have also completely failed to stand up for Renfrewshire against the cuts being inflicted on our community by both the SNP and Tory governments. The people of Renfrewshire deserve better.

Renfrewshire’s election on May 5th isn’t about the constitution or your position on independence. It’s about local people, local services, and the local community. Labour has a clear plan for change and for getting the basics right – with policies targeted to clean up our streets, fund the frontline, reinvigorate our town centres and local economy, and work to bring local buses under public control.

Renfrewshire Labour isn’t promising the earth. We’re just promising to run Renfrewshire properly. Plenty of councils manage to fix the roads and keep the streets clean. The SNP have had their chance in Renfrewshire and they’ve failed. It’s time for change.”

The policies detailed in the manifesto include:

  • A freeze of all council fees and charges for at least two years, and a pledge to keep council tax low.
  • A refreshed strategy to repair our roads and footways and an end to sub-standard road patching.
  • Targeting wardens and CCTV in anti-social behaviour hotspots to make our streets and parks safer.
  • Zero tolerance for fly-tipping and dog-fouling.
  • Reducing Renfrewshire’s educational attainment gap and demanding a renewed emphasis on literacy and numeracy skills.
  • School swimming lessons for all children by age 10.
  • Creating a new master plan for town centres to unlock the potential of our high streets.
  • Supporting local businesses by using council resources to buy local.
  • Working to create a Strathclyde-wide bus network run for people not private profit.
  • Building and enhancing the stock of social housing.
  • Defending our green belt and giving local communities more say over planning decisions.

Speaking as the manifesto was launched, Paisley Northwest Labour candidate Ben Smith commented:

“The reception on the doors has been really encouraging. Residents who have historically voted for all parties and none are expressing enthusiasm for Labour, and exhaustion with this incompetent SNP Council. Our diverse and energised team of local champions will provide the fresh thinking and ideas that Renfrewshire Council needs.

“The SNP have had their chance. It’s time for change in Renfrewshire, and a vote for Scottish Labour is a vote to deliver that change.”

Omar Taher MSYP Ren North & West

16 and 17-year-olds encouraged to vote in the upcoming Council elections in Renfrewshire

Young people in Renfrewshire are being encouraged to register to vote by the 18 April 2022 deadline to ensure they can have their say in the local Council elections.

Omar Taher is one of Renfrewshire’s representatives at the Scottish Youth Parliament, so he is keener than most to have his say in the local elections on Thursday 5 May 2022.

Omar Taher MSYP Ren North & West

Omar said: “Voting and politics can sometimes feel confusing and there can be a lot of unclear and old-fashioned words and explanations – and it’s easy to feel a bit overwhelmed.

“That’s why there is information available on the Council website for young people to help ensure that you are ready to vote and know what you’re voting for.

“The local elections will elect councillors who will represent us for the next five years so it’s really important that we vote for the people that we want to be in charge in Renfrewshire.

“Previously it was only adults who could take part, but now anyone over the age of 16 can vote in the elections so let’s make sure we take our opportunity.”

Anyone aged 16 or over needs to be registered to vote in the election, with the deadline for registration falling on 18 April 2022.

Omar added: “You’re not registered automatically so take five minutes to fill in the form online if you’ve never voted before – and if you have voted before but have recently moved house or your name has changed, then you need to register again.

“Being part of the Scottish Youth Parliament has been a great experience and it’s made me realise how important young people are in politics, both locally and nationally.

“We really have the power to make a difference, but we can only do that by casting our vote and then working with the elected members to make the changes we want to see.

“So, make sure you register and then have your say on Thursday 5 May – I can’t wait to cast my vote.”

Voters have a variety of options available to cast their vote, including in-person on the day, by post in advance or nominating someone else to vote on their behalf (by proxy).

If choosing to vote another way than in-person, voters must register this with the Electoral Registration Officer by the following dates:

  • Applying for new postal or postal proxy votes – Tuesday 19 April (5pm)
  • Applying for new proxy votes – Tuesday 26 April (5pm)

Voting will take place on Thursday 5 May, with the verification and counting of votes undertaken on Friday 6 May at the Lagoon Leisure Centre.

For more information on the forthcoming election, visit www.renfrewshire.gov.uk/council-elections-2022.