, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Scottish netball stars are going for gold in the Commonwealth Games cheered on by brave Amy who beat cancer

SCOTTISH netball stars are going for gold in the Commonwealth Games cheered on by one of their bravest fans.

Nine-year-old Amy Reid who lost a kidney to cancer was treated to a VIP tour of the Emirates Arena Stadium in Glasgow by the Scottish Thistles national netball team. The players who will begin the 10,000 mile trip to Australia on Friday (March 23) to compete at Gold Coast 2018 gave Amy a signed netball, tshirt, pen and free tickets to an upcoming UWS Sirens game (Scotland’s semi-pro franchise for whom most of the Thistles play) where she has also been invited to be the Captain’s mascot on their return from the Commonwealth Games. The visit was organised to boost awareness of Cancer Research UK’s Race for Life events this spring which raise millions of pounds to fund crucial research. Every hour, four people are diagnosed with cancer in Scotland*. Now, to help beat cancer sooner, members of Netball Scotland have pledged to pull on their trainers and take part in Race for Life Glasgow on May 20 at Glasgow Green and are urging other women and girls across Scotland to sign up too.

Amy who is 4ft 7in chatted to netball stars including the tallest member of the Scottish Thistles, goalkeeper Ella Gibbons, 23, who is 6ft 3in, as well as team captain, Claire Brownie. In February they were part of the team which saw Scotland qualify for the 2019 World Cup. At the Commonweatlh Games on the Gold Coast which starts on April 4, they are in pool B so will take on 2014 silver medallists New Zealand. They’ll also play England, Wales, Malawi and Uganda.

Claire, 29, said: “We were all moved and inspired by Amy’s courage and bravery.

“Amy will be the team’s lucky charm in Australia. It’s great to have the chance to meet Amy and tell her a bit more about netball. It’s a really important part of our job to inspire girls to get active and be into sport. All you need is for kids to dream but for that to happen, they need to see what’s possible. We’re so excited and proud to represent Scotland in the Commonwealth Games. When we’re out there it will be brilliant to know that people back home like Amy are cheering us on.”

Amy of Coatbridge, North Lanarkshire, who endured a life saving stem cell transplant knows exactly how tough it can be going through cancer. Her family have raised vital funds for Cancer Research UK by taking part in the 5K at Race for Life Glasgow every year since Amy was diagnosed with the disease in September 2012. This year, as Amy takes her place on the start line along with her mum Laura, 39, and sister Sophie, two, she’ll also be cheered on by her dad Robert, 41, and brother, Gary, 19.

Amy’s proud mum, Laura said: “Amy really is our superhero.

“Amy has kept us strong through it all. At the time we couldn’t see a light at the end of the tunnel. We thought Amy was never going to get through this. It was frightening. Now looking at her, I can’t believe she was ever so ill. Her recovery has been amazing.

“Amy did her first Race for Life 5K event while still going through treatment for cancer and it’s been a really important part of our lives ever since. If Amy’s story can help other families going through cancer right now then we’ll have made a difference.

“We’d like to thank all the Scottish Thistles who helped give Amy such a special day. Amy really likes sport now. She loves swimming, cricket and football at school. When we watch the Commonwealth Games on tv we’ll be looking out for the netball girls and saying, ‘We’ve met them.’ It’s great to see Amy being so active again and enjoying life.”

Amy was only three when she first became ill with a high temperature just hours after her mum and dad’s wedding day on September 21 2012. The family were set to jet off on holiday to Spain after the marriage at St James Chapel, Coatbridge. Instead they ended up at Wishaw General Hospital and then Yorkhill Children’s Hospital after Amy’s condition deteriorated. Scans showed a tumour on Amy’s left kidney was stopping it from working properly. Amy was diagnosed with a Wilms tumour and endured a six hour operation to remove the kidney.

Amy’s mum, Laura said: “As I took Amy down to the operating theatre I was trying to stop myself crying to keep Amy calm so she would be okay.

“I knew Amy was getting the best care possible but seeing your child like that is so difficult. If I could have taken Amy’s place then I would have. I paced around outside until she came out of surgery and I knew she was fine. Now she tells everyone that the scar where they took her kidney out is a big snake.”

Amy started on chemotherapy but it was a hammerblow when tests revealed there was also a tumour on her lung. It meant a second operation to remove the tumour followed by a year of chemotherapy and radiotherapy. Amy lost her hair and became a regular at the Schiehallion ward at Yorkhill.

By October 2013, doctors explained that Amy’s best chance of survival was a stem cell transplant, to help her body make new healthy blood cells after her own had been destroyed by the disease. It meant two weeks in an isolation ward to reduce the risk of infection. By Christmas that year the family got the best present of all when doctors explained the cancer had gone. Amy who is now a primary five pupil at St Timothy’s Primary school in Coatbridge is loving life.

Cancer Research UK Race for Life organisers are appealing for women and girls to stride out to beat cancer sooner this spring with Scotland’s first Race for Life 5K of the year kicking off in Stirling and South Queensferry on May 13, closely followed by 5K, 10K and Pretty Muddy 5K events across the country, everywhere from Glasgow to Aberdeen, Fife to Falkirk, Dundee to Irvine. Cancer Research UK’s Race for Life, in partnership with Tesco, is an inspiring women-only series of 5k, 10k, Pretty Muddy, half marathon and hiking events which raise millions of pounds every year to help beat cancer sooner by funding crucial research.

Lisa Adams, Cancer Research UK spokeswoman in Scotland, said: “We are very grateful to Netball Scotland and to Amy’s family for their support

“By signing up to Race for Life, women across Scotland can make a real difference in the fight against cancer. Money raised will help Cancer Research UK scientists and doctors find new ways to prevent, diagnose and treat the disease, helping save more lives.

“Race for Life is a hugely moving experience – full of emotion, courage, tears and laughter – as people come together to remember loved ones lost to cancer, celebrate the lives of those dear to them who have survived or support those going through treatment. By joining like-minded ladies committed to the cause, women can unite against a disease that affects us all in some way.

“Every day, 87 people are diagnosed with cancer in Scotland. That’s why we need women across Scotland to sign up to Race for Life this January and join mothers, daughters, sisters and friends at the start line when events kick off this summer.

“Money raised through Race for Life is helping to drive research to help beat over 200 different types of cancer – that’s why every step, every person and every penny raised counts.”

One in two people in the UK will be diagnosed with cancer at some stage in their lives, but the good news is more people are surviving the disease now than ever before. Cancer survival in the UK has doubled since the early 1970s and Cancer Research UK’s work has been at the heart of that progress.

Cancer Research UK’s life-saving work relies on the public’s support. Thanks to the generosity of its supporters, the charity was able to spend more than £34 million last year in Scotland on some of the UK’s leading scientific and clinical research – helping more men, women and children survive the disease.


To enter Race for Life today visit raceforlife.org or call 0300 123 0770.

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Safety first is the goal for Renfrewshire pupils

Almost 2,000 primary six pupils have taken part in a series of safety workshops designed to keep Renfrewshire children safe.

The annual Safe Kids events, organised by the Renfrewshire Community Safety Partnership and hosted by St Mirren Football Club, has delivered safety messages to more than 20,000 young people since it was first introduced more than a decade ago.

Pupils from every school in Renfrewshire were invited to take part a wide range of workshops, from littering, dog fouling and anti-social behaviour to fire safety, drugs and alcohol awareness and emergency situations.

The workshops took place in and around the Paisley 2021 Stadium, including the dressing rooms and hospitality suite, with pupils taking their seat in the stand before being split into their groups for the day.

Kids were also tasked to create their own posters detailing what being safe means to them and five winners were selected by Renfrewshire’s Provost Lorraine Cameron.

The winners, and their families, were invited to a special VIP day at the Paisley 2021 Stadium and were joined by pupils from Bargarren, St John Bosco, Glencoats and Barsail Primary.

The five winners were:

Momina Ali – Newmains Primary, Renfrew

Gracie Boyd – Ralston Primary, Paisley

Evie Crawford – Lochfield Primary, Paisley

Jemma Johnston – St Anthony’s Primary, Johnstone

Summer Coyle – Rashielea Primary, Erskine

Councillor Cathy McEwan, Convener of Renfrewshire Council’s Infrastructure, Land and Environment Policy Board, said: “Safe Kids is a fantastic project which is ensuring our children have the correct information and skills to stay safe in a variety of situations.

“More than 20,000 pupils have had the opportunity to learn from a variety of our community partners and this will allow them to be fully informed to deal with issues both in and out of school.

”The workshops are delivered in a fun and engaging manner which means the young people involved can enjoy the day while still taking in the serious messaging behind the activities.”

Safe Kids events took place on 7-8 March, 13-16 March and will conclude between 19-22 March.

The workshops were delivered by a range of partners including Renfrewshire Council’s Youth Team, Renfrewshire Council’s Wardens, Renfrewshire Council’s Civil Contingencies Service, Renfrewshire Council’s RADAR (Drugs and Alcohol), Police Scotland, British Transport Police, Scottish Fire and Rescue, Who Cares Scotland and Street Stuff.

Prizes for the winners, including discounted passes, bags and tickets, were kindly donated by Flip Out, Joma Sport and St Mirren.

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,



Address: 119-123 Renfrew Road, Paisley, PA3 4EA



150 sqft office (1/2 people)

All inclusive rental: £185 + VAT


340 sqft office (3 people)

All inclusive rental: £395 + VAT


815 sqft office (6/7 people)

All inclusive rental: £910 + VAT 

Choose Mirren Business Centres as your  Paisley base and benefit from our unique business surroundings and range of amenities such as :

  • On-site parking with an adjacent over-spill car parking

  • Excellent access to public transport close to M8 Junction 27/Glasgow Airport

  • On-site Management

  • Meeting Room Facility

  • Many amenities including Puregym, Lagoon Leisure Centre, KFC & McDonalds, Braehead Shopping Centre and much more.




, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

2021 thank you event to look ahead to Paisley’s bright future

Plans to secure a exciting future for Paisley will be laid out at a celebration event aimed at highlighting the benefits of bidding for UK City of Culture 2021 and how the town plans to continue to harness the power of culture to transform its fortunes.

The ‘Our Journey Continues’ event, which will take place on Thursday 29 March at Paisley Town Hall from 12.00 – 1.30pm, will examine the key benefits of the town’s bid including helping to raise the town’s profile, raising ambitions for the area, developing a deeper understanding of the excellent work taking place in the community.

The town’s bid to be UK City of Culture 2021 changed the town for the better, and the momentum it generated will continue and this will be discussed in more detail at the event.

In addition to celebrating the work which has already taken place it will also reveal more about the future opportunities. This includes investing in cultural venues and outdoor spaces such as Paisley Museum, Paisley Arts Centre and St James Playing Fields, developing the creative economy and enhancing our cultural events and festivals programme and continuing to build on the support from the community. This investment demonstrates how Renfrewshire continues to buck the trend in terms of cultural investment.

Furthermore it will show that the council and its place partners are still committed to achieving the step changes outlined in the bid – to grow a new dimension to the economy, transform the town’s image, lift Paisley’s communities out of poverty, be recognised for cultural excellence and transform the town into a vibrant cultural centre.

The event will see partners and local community groups come together to find out more about future plans and members of the public are encouraged to come along to learn what will happen next for the town.

Chair of the Paisley Partnership Board, Councillor Iain Nicolson, said: “The Our Journey Continues event is not only a celebration of the excellent work which has already taken place through the bidding process but is a great opportunity for us all to look ahead to the exciting plans for the future.”

This event precedes the Future Forward: Culture in Renfrewshire collaborative discussion which will ask attendees what directions culture in Renfrewshire should take, and what successes people would like to build on.  The event will be held in Paisley Town Hall from 2-4pm.

Renfrewshire Leisure’s Head of Cultural Services, Morag Macpherson, said: “The thank you event is a great introduction to the Culture in Renfrewshire discussion which will allow everyone to have their say on what the priorities for culture in Renfrewshire should be in the years to come.

“I’m sure the plans unveiled through Our Journey Continues, and the ideas and ambitions which people come along with, will create a really rich inspirational mix. We will discuss how we best focus our aspirations and collectively create a really exciting cultural environment over the next few years.”

There will also be another Future Forward session on Tues 17 April 6-8pm, places can be booked here.

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,


Leaders in education, local government and business are urging employers across Renfrewshire to have their say in the West of Scotland Skills Survey before it closes on Friday 23rd March.

Scotland’s largest college kicked off 2018 by launching the West of Scotland Skills Survey. The first of its kind to be conducted by a Scottish college or university, it is a new way that West College Scotland is engaging with employers to help build a modern workforce.

Launched online in January, the West of Scotland Skills Survey has been gathering the views and experiences of employers in the West region – focusing on their workforce and business support needs.

The findings of the sector-leading research will then be used to better inform the work of the College and how they support employers in 2018 and beyond.

The West of Scotland Skills Survey is open to employers of all sizes in Renfrewshire, East Renfrewshire, Inverclyde and Dunbartonshire – and closes on Friday 23rd March. Upon completing the survey, participants will be able to enter prize draws for £1,000 worth of free workforce training and development, free use of the College’s conferencing facilities and a 3-course lunch for 10 people.

Audrey Cumberford, the Principal of West College Scotland, said:

“As Scotland’s largest college and a leader in the region we serve, West College Scotland is committed to working with partners and employers to build a modern workforce, sustain a thriving economy and help people achieve their potential.

“The West of Scotland Skills Survey is just one way that we are engaging with employers Renfrewshire and across our region to ensure that the West is able to overcome the challenges and grasp the opportunities of a competitive global economy.

“I would urge employers across Renfrewshire to participate in our sector-leading research before the survey closes this Friday to help us support them in the future and build a modern workforce.”

Cllr Iain Nicolson, Leader of Renfrewshire Council, said:

“We are committed to growing the local economy by creating new job opportunities in Renfrewshire and removing barriers to employment.

“Renfrewshire has the fourth best youth employment rate in Scotland and we are developing a reputation as a place of enterprise, creativity and drive, home to a highly-skilled workforce making a vital contribution to the local and national economy.

“West College Scotland plays a key role in this and we are working closely with the College and with business and education leaders across Renfrewshire to develop a long-term economic strategy. The findings from this innovative skills survey will provide further important information and help inform our collective approach to drive Renfrewshire’s future economic success.”

Bob Grant, Chief Executive of Renfrewshire Chamber of Commerce, added:

“Getting the right people, with the right skills, in the right jobs is one of the biggest challenges facing employers no matter what sector or industry they operate in. Renfrewshire Chamber of Commerce welcomes West College Scotland’s latest initiative to support employers across the region.

“The West of Scotland Skills Survey gives employers across Renfrewshire the opportunity to have their voice heard, to shape the College curriculum and to help build a modern workforce. I’d urge all local employers – no matter how big or small they are – to participate in this important work.”

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Renfrewshire schools celebrate British Science Week with range of activities including Whodunits

From turning classrooms into crime scenes and studying tsunamis, schools across Renfrewshire marked British Science Week with a string of activities.

Budding forensic investigators at St Mary’s Primary in Paisley turned detective to take part in a special CSI day, ‘Who killed Mrs Friel?’

The classroom was turned into a CSI lab as the children solved the whodunit of which member of staff killed their head teacher in the gym hall.

A guest speaker explained to the children how evidence is gathered in real life, while they were also given the chance to quiz suspects.

Pupils also enjoyed a range of science workshops, with younger students visiting Glasgow’s Science Centre to mark the ten day celebration of science, technology, engineering and maths.

St. Anne’s Primary in Erskine held a Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) week with a variety of different activities to promote learning and career choice.

The Scottish Society for the Protection of Cruelty to Animals talked to children about their work in the care and protection of animals, as well as the impact humans can have on the environment and how this affects other living things.

Microbiologist from Glasgow University undertook experiments with older pupils to help them understand how microbiology works and how it can improve our world.

Staff from Trinity High School, Network Rail and the University of West of Scotland also dropped by, while visiting academics from Strathclyde University helped children learn about wind turbines.

At Howwood Primary, older children heard from a parent based at Prestwick Airport as an air traffic controller and pupils were able to track a plane that passed over the school to Amsterdam.

Other pupils embarked on Space discovery and worked together to create rockets while senior pupils created working volcanoes and disaster movies, while learning about genetics.

Primary six pupils embarked on a bridge building project with local firm Thermo Fisher Scientific, looking at costs and design and then building the bridge in miniature.

Science was also celebrated at St Anthony’s Primary in Johnstone, where children produced a topic on the human body and one class looked at tsunamis and the impact they have on the environment.

Education and Children’s Services Convener, Councillor Jim Paterson, said: “It’s great to see schools putting a range of activities to mark British Science Week and bringing the subject alive in such a fun way for children.“

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Kelly Ann McCormick Whats My Story

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Renfrewshire’s school leavers heading for great futures

The number of young people entering a positive destination after leaving school in Renfrewshire is the highest it’s ever been.

Around 45 per cent of Renfrewshire’s young people are going to university and other higher education establishments – significantly higher numbers than the national average – as revealed in national data collected by Scottish Government.

The official statistics show a six-year trend that’s increasingly improving for Renfrewshire’s young people, with more than 90 per cent going into higher or further education, employment or training.

Education and Children’s Services Convener for Renfrewshire Council, Councillor Jim Paterson, is delighted that more of Renfrewshire’s young people are taking positive steps towards their future upon leaving school.

He said: “The fact that a high number of Renfrewshire’s young people are entering positive destinations upon leaving school is encouraging. Over the last six years, we’ve seen an increasingly improving trend for our school leavers who are going into higher and further education, work and training.

“It’s also encouraging that a significant percentage of our school leavers remain in long-term positive post-school destinations, but we want to do more to support every child and young person in Renfrewshire reach their full potential regardless of their background.

“Here in Renfrewshire, we are working hard to close the poverty-related attainment gap while also raising attainment for all. We want our children to have the best start in life, meaning they have the right skills and support to be successful in later life.

“Improving children and young people’s life chances takes a holistic approach – from providing support to vulnerable families, supporting children and young people as individuals who learn differently from each other, and improving their overall health and wellbeing.

“We have been working hard to raise attainment for all. Renfrewshire’s pupils are already performing well or better in literacy and numeracy measures in all stages (S4, S5 and S6) than pupils from across Scotland with similar backgrounds and we have a number of initiatives in place that will further improve pupil attainment levels.

“We’ve already taken significant steps to improve the learning and teaching of reading in our primary schools and all our teachers have access to continuous professional development that supports them to achieve their very best.

“By giving children and young people the best start in life, we are supporting them to achieve their goals and have a great future.”

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Gin 71 is just the tonic for Paisley Food and Drink Festival

The award-winning bar chain, Gin 71, will be at Paisley Food and Drink Festival allowing visitors to sample the very best artisan gins.

Paisley Food FestivalDarrel Douglas from the Rum Shack

Paisley’s popular Food and Drink Festival returns next month and for the first time ever will take place over two days from Friday 27 to Saturday 28 April when the very best of Scotland’s producers will showcase their wares to visitors in Paisley’s iconic Abbey Close. Visitors can experience drinks tasting sessions as well as a fantastic selection of street food vendors, interactive workshops, live music running alongside Scotland’s largest real ale festival.

Gin 71 will run two dedicated gin tasting sessions on Friday 27 April accommodating 50 people in each session and showcasing the very best Scottish craft gins with the perfect serves making it a great evening out.

On Saturday 28 April the bar will have their very own gin palace tent with an extensive array of more than 20 craft gins to sample including Arbikie, Gin Bothy and Isle of Harris.

Gin enthusiasts will also have the chance to speak to some of the gin producers at the bar’s free ‘Meet the Maker’ sessions to find out more about their product and the advice for the best way to sample their gins.

Managing Director of Gin 71, Paul Reynolds, said: “We’re looking forward to bringing Gin 71 to Paisley Food and Drink Festival to offer people the chance to sample some fantastic craft gins.

“Gin really is booming at the moment and through our tasting sessions, Meet the Maker opportunities and expert bar staff who will be at the festival we hope to highlight the great range of craft gins available and maybe even create some new gin fans.”

This news follows Gin 71’s recent expansion having opened its third Glasgow branch on the first floor of House of Fraser on Buchanan Street earlier this month. This follows the successful launch of their gin spa – the first spa of its kind in the UK.

Demand is expected to be high for the gin tasting sessions on Friday 27 April so interested parties are encouraged to book early to avoid disappointment. Tickets for the tasting session are £25 per person which covers samples of six of the finest artisan gins with Gin 71 expert staff insights on the perfect mixer and garnish. To find out more or to book a slot please visit: www.gin71.com/paisley.

To find out more about what’s on offer at this year’s Paisley Food and Drink Festival please visit: www.paisley.is.

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Wedding Fayre at Johnstone Town Hall

For anyone starting to plan their big day, then Johnstone Town Hall’s first ever Wedding Fayre is the place to be. Join us on Sunday 8 April from 11am to 4pm. Entry is free.

This event will host a wide variety of local wedding suppliers, from photographers to kiltmakers and florists to candy carts. There will also be the opportunity to view a wedding set up in the main hall so that visitors can see just what this award-winning venue has to offer. Visitors will be able to experience the state-of-the-art technical facilities and have a look around the dedicated marriage suite. Free consultations will also be available with our wedding co-ordinators on the day.

Visitors to the Fayre will also receive a complimentary drink, a goody bag and a range of special offers and discounts.

Any businesses wishing to participate in the event should call Johnstone Town Hall on 0300 300 1210.