Starlight Youth Music Theatre:

SYMT is a Scottish company based in Paisley offering the best opportunities for young people to stage new music theatre. We are proud to work with some of the most talented and passionate artistic professionals from within the music theatre industry in the Scotland and the UK. A host of opportunities are available for young people aged 4-19 on this website.

One of their next events is The Producers, see poster below for details.

For more information please check out

Thursday 26th 2012,
12 – 2pm ,
Ingliston Country Club, Bishopton


Traditional Burns lunch networking event with RSAMD Burns singer, Burns club speaker & our ROCCO piper.
Member Cost: £30 plus VAT
Non Member Cost: £40 plus VAT

You can book for chamber events on line or by email.


Book by email through, confirming the event you wish to book and the following details for each delegate attending: Company name, brief company description, delegate name, email address, and contact telephone number.


You will receive email confirmation of your booking. Please contact the events team on 0141 847 5450 if you have not received this within 48 hours.

* Please note that payment in full is required before the event.
** Cancellations made less than 3 working days prior to event date are non refundable.

Paisley MOD 2013

Paisley MOD 2013

Mòd Phàislig & Voices in Paisley are offering an exciting opportunity to compose the tune ‘Paisley welcomes the Royal National Mod 2013’which will celebrate the historic visit of the renowned Gaelic festival to the town in 2013. As their contribution to Weaving Musical Threads, the arts extravaganza which takes place across Renfrewshire on 3 & 4 March, the Mòd Phàislig 2013 team have combined with Voices in Paisley to host this competition, with the winner being unveiled on Saturday 3 March when a number of Gaelic choirs will perform in the town as part of the celebrations.

In order to enter the competition email or post a manuscript of your composition to the Mòd Phàislig team. Do not put your name on the manuscript as the judging will be anonymous. It would be useful if entrants could also submit some audio of the tune being played, although this is not essential. In addition to the manuscript, a covering letter is required with full contact details, as well as any information you feel is necessary. E-mail entries to or post to Mòd Phàislig 2013, 12 Ben Nevis Road, Paisley, PA27LA by 8 February. If you have any queries contact Ealasaid MacDonald on 07535514385

In addition to having the honour of their tune being the soundtrack to the Mòd Phàislig celebrations, the winner will receive a cheque for £150. Judging the competition to the final two are three stalwarts of traditional music, Duncan Nicholson, Pipe Major of Strathclyde Police Pipe Band, Brian Laurie of the Brian Laurie Accordion Music School and Andrew Gifford of the renowned band Fiddlers Bid. It will be the audience at the Gaelic Choirs event on 3 March that will make the final decision.

Jim Drennan, Chair of Voices in Paisley said:

‘We are delighted to be working with Mòd Phàislig 2013 as our contribution to Weaving Musical Threads. The tune will provide a lovely soundtrack to the preparations for the Mòd, and will be a lasting legacy. We hope composers from Renfrewshire and afar take the opportunity to be part of two exciting events.’

Ealasaid MacDonald, Convenor of Mòd Phàislig 2013, said

‘This is an excellent opportunity for people to be at the centre of the Mòd Phàislig celebrations. The tune will be central at all events as we prepare for the Mòd and also while it is here in the town. We are grateful to our judges for giving their time to judge and I know they are looking forward to seeing the different interpretations of ‘Paisley welcomes the Royal National Mòd 2013’.

For press queries contact Ealasaid (Liz) MacDonald on 07535514385 or email

Little Lions – 3-5yrs
Wee Warriors – 6-12yrs
Adults Classes – 13+

Mondays, Thursdays and Saturdays

Kuk Sool Won™ is a systematic study of all of the traditional fighting arts, which together comprise the martial arts history of Korea. As a martial arts system, Kuk Sool Won™ is extremely well-organized; and seeks to integrate and explore the entire spectrum of established Asian fighting arts and body conditioning techniques, as well as mental development and traditional weapons training.

The following list includes some, but by no means all, of the elements of Kuk Sool Won™
Punching Range, Kicking Range, Joint Locking Range, Throws, Mid-Range & Grappling Range.
Falling & Acrobatics, Traditional Weapons, Martial Art Healing & Meditation Techniques.
Forms, Patterns, Sparring – Non Contact / Semi contact & Full Contact. 

Find out times and more information by clicking One Dance Studios link here

paisley logo

Advertise your Business over the Festive period; we have on average 10,000 visitors per day with a huge number of page views.

Our Facebook pages have a combination of 4,000 likes (last month we had 250,000 views on our posts alone) and we have accumulated over 3,000 followers in our various Twitter pages.

We don’t just have the Paisley websites and Facebook pages, we have a large network of various towns and villages surrounding the area too. We also have 2,500 registered users on the website.

Now, is this the kind of advertising network that sounds appealing to your business? We have several places for your business to advertise, and every business that does gets up to two blog posts per week maximising exposure and helping your business be socially active.

Read more

Linwood named as 2011 Carbuncle ‘winner’

It’s been three months of trudging around some of the countries darkest corners but in the end judging for the 2011 Carbuncle Awards didn’t prove too challenging, Linwood’s plight was simply too great to ignore.

Linwood has been no stranger to controversy since it made headlines as the location of S1 Jobs infamous ‘Lavvy Heid’. Since then the town itself has gone down the toilet as its main shopping centre has been slowly run into the ground. As Urban Realm found out however residents, under the ‘Linwood Sucks’ banner, are increasingly finding their voice in the face of official neglect.

Linwood’s town centre, conceived in 1969, was sold as Scotland’s first regional shopping centre – but it never quite got there as the judging panel quickly discovered upon arrival. Some have attempted to apportion the blame on the closure of the Rootes car plant but for Tom Burke, a local community champion and founder of, the malaise goes deeper: “Everyone blamed the decline on the car plant, but that closed in 1980. Obviously there is more to it than that.  I first noticed the visual decline in 2001 when S1 Jobs did their famous TV advert here, ‘Lavvy Heid’.”

Linwood then is a town without a heart as those businesses which survive decant to a nearby industrial estate. In their wake lies a town centre which viscerally defines the word grim, particularly at night when gatherings of the Linwood Young Team congregate in groups of up to 20. “They’re mostly not doing any harm just looking for somewhere to hang out”, points out Burke, “but old people coming through here at night do look quite vulnerable.”

Eyeing a series of exposed concrete beams on the centre roof Burke ventures. “This is a popular play area, the youth will run across these concrete beams. The closest you’ll get to any youth centre is up in the community centre – which is scheduled to be demolished.”
Peeling shop fronts reveal something of the time warp which Linwood has become as eighties digital font betrays a protracted absence of investment. “There’s been no upkeep or maintenance, all it’s got is thirty years of pigeon shit inside,” moans Burke. In that time the main growth in the town has come from an array of impressive stalactites.

Remaining life centres on the library, from which the Urban Realm team was swiftly ejected. There are no shops left open and most of the lighting has either fallen down or been removed. Adjoining the library is Tweedie Hall, the defacto town hall, and a health centre, which remains in use. Nearby the fire escape to the original opticians has a cage, chain and padlock on it in response to the shop being held up a few years back. It has since moved to a portacabin on site with its own secure entry. The receptionist is delighted with the new place: if only to escape the “pigeons and rats”.

Intercepting one woman on route from the health entre to the bus stop, we asked what life was like in Linwood: “There’s nothing going on in Linwood, they said it (redevelopment) would start last month. The date keeps changing so we don’t know what’s happening. It’s an eyesore, even if they flattened it it wouldn’t be so bad. It’s been like this for years.”

A statue once stood at the centre of this square behind us but has been removed for safe keeping: “Vandals started hacking pieces off it, so it had to be removed”, Burke explained: “It looked a bit like a ship and was supposed to represent hope rising from adversity. It’s been put in storage and the council say it will be replaced if the new town centre ever comes to fruition. A group of unlicensed scrap merchants seem to be on a mission to strip everything of value from the shopping centre.”

A local council worker on route to Tweedie Hall ventured: “Its like Fort Apache. I feel really strongly about the sociological implications never mind the health implications. They seem to strangle every initiative… it’s this Tescoisation of the world where they’ll buy up land so no-one else can build. At the bottom of the food chain are the punters who are in effect powerless.”

Eyeing a loosely fenced off area of shattered paving Burke explains: “The last surviving post box was removed in the last couple of weeks, this is typical of development work in Linwood, dig something up and leave it.  There is no bank in the town, just one surviving post office a mile and a half away.” For a place of 9,000 odd folk it must be one of the largest communities in the country without these key facilities.

“I’ve spent the best part of four years in Iraq and thinking of some of the positive reconstruction work that’s taken place there it’s actually better than this,” Burke laments.

But how could things have been allowed to get this bad? “I believe it was a tactical decision by Tesco as early as 2000 when a company called Balmore bought the shopping centre, after that it was run into the ground,” Burke muses. “Only later did it emerge that Balmore is actually part of Tesco. No-one really wants a Tesco but if their plan was to make the town centre so bad that locals would accept anything then that plan has worked. People are now welcoming Tesco. People would rather have nothing than this dangerous eyesore.”
The attentions of Tesco have thus far not served the town well and Linwood is already well served by an Asda and Co-op, perhaps a more promising sign of hope lies in Club Sandwich, small scale, entrepreneurial venture. Skirting an open manhole cover, Burke adds: “Nobody wants to spend maintenance on something scheduled to be demolished – but if you’ve opened something as a through route then you have a duty of care and certain health and safety duties.”

Carbuncles judge Geoff Crowley of Highland Galvanizers said: “The actual fabric isn’t so bad, the frame isn’t so far gone that you couldn’t make something out of it. The concrete’s spalled and some of the flat roofing could be a bit of a problem so probably no-one’s taken much interest in looking at a refurbishment programme.

“Yes there are eyesores, yes there are problems with contamination but Linwood’s housing isn’t so bad. Look at that pile of rubbish there, if the neighbour sees that they’ll think it doesn’t matter if they don’t mow the lawn. It’s broken window theory, if there is a problem, it spreads like a cancer and becomes a general lowering of community standards. It’s got to be nipped in the bud.

“You see lots of examples of pride in the community despite these problems, flowers in the garden, clipped hedges. That’s a good base to start with and try and draw back to a more acceptable situation. There are a lot of people who have a certain level of pride in this community.

“Sometimes if you have a Carbuncle you need to cut bits out and it could be that that bit there (the centre), which is not performing any function, maybe not having it, if you just levelled it and grassed it, would be better than what you’ve got. It wouldn’t be what you want but it would be better than what you’ve got and when there’s no money that might be a solution.”

Another bone of contention for our judges was the prevalence of ‘no ball games signs’ on vacant ground.  At one time there were as many as a dozen playgrounds dotted around town but since the 90s they’ve all slowly been removed. Including one, inadvertently, closed down by Burke himself when he discovered it had been built on contaminated ground. Crowley said: “Linwood needs lots of little playgrounds and it has the space for them. Putting all the play activity inside a big shed is not a good idea, kids need to play outside.”
Burke added: “If people are living their normal busy, day to day schedules they might never see this. They might just drive up the main roads going backwards and forwards to work and be oblivious to the eyesore of the shopping centre because they’ve gotten so used to it.”

This observation highlighted by a key rift in the community; those with cars and those without. “If you don’t have a car you’re at a massive disadvantage,” Burke noted.  “You’ve got the Phoenix Retail Park with its cinema, Asda and McDonald’s but there is no allowance for pedestrian access – you see young mothers with prams, old age pensioners and kids on bikes risking their lives to cross the motorway twice to reach the Phoenix.”

This divide highlights a key difficulty for Linwood; can it make up its mind and agree on a town centre or admit that there are actually multiple centres? On the map it’s difficult to pinpoint a true centre, the existing mall being right on the edge and yet that’s where Renfrewshire Council place their Christmas tree. Linwood isn’t a lost cause. It could be turned around and turned around quite quickly. To do so however requires action, it is in this spirit as a catalyst for change that Linwood has been awarded the 2012 Carbuncle awards.

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Festive campaign launches one stop shop for safety

Community safety organisations across Renfrewshire have teamed up to launch a one stop shop for information and advice as part of their festive safety campaign.

The Community Safety Shop has opened in the Paisley Centre and will run until Friday 23 December from 9.30am until 4.30pm every day.

Around 20 partner organisations have signed up to take part and have staff on hand at different times to provide information, advice and act as a point of contact for members of the public.

Renfrewshire Wardens Service, Strathclyde Fire and Rescue, Strathclyde Police and Renfrewshire Community Health Partnership will all be on hand. There will also be officers from Renfrewshire Council’s Trading Standards and Antisocial Behaviour Investigations (ASIST) teams.

The shop will also be used to invite people to sign up for Renfrewshire’s Ready for Winter campaign.

The launch of the shop also marks the start of additional safety measures being introduced for the festive period.

Councillor Kenny MacLaren, Renfrewshire Council’s Community Safety spokesperson, said: “Throughout the year we work closely with our community safety partners to ensure that people in Renfrewshire feel safe. This is particularly important over the festive period when unfortunately the actions of a few can ruin things for others. The festive safety campaign combines support and advice for the public through the community safety shop with extra measures to ensure our town centres stay safe this Christmas.”

A taxi marshal service will be provided by Renfrewshire Wardens Service in Paisley town centre on Friday and Saturday nights starting from Friday 9 December.

There will also be additional and late night patrols in Paisley, Johnstone and Renfrew town centres by both the wardens and Strathclyde Police.

Inspector Joe Thomson of Strathclyde Police said: “As at any time of year, we’re here to keep people safe and whilst we want everyone to enjoy the festivities, we would also urge everyone to take responsibility for their own safety too. Increased levels of alcohol make people more vulnerable, cause them to take risks they would not normally consider and increase the chance of being a victim of crime.

“We have seen significant reductions in violent crime in Renfrewshire in recent years. However we are not complacent and in particular at this time of year we will be working extra hard to have a highly visible presence in town centres and hotspot areas in order to deter those intent on violent crime and antisocial behaviour.”

Strathclyde Fire and Rescue’s Area Commander of Renfrewshire, John Ironside, said: “We are delighted to be working with our Community Planning partners to improve Community Safety in Renfrewshire

“Last year we attended 250 house fires over the holiday period where six people died and 68 people were injured. Two of those fatal house fires occurred in Renfrewshire.

“There are simple steps that any householder can take to reduce the risk of fire.  Take care to put cigarettes out properly, and don’t cook if you are under the influence of alcohol.  But the most fundamental step that anyone can take is to make sure you have a working smoke alarm in your home. If fire does break out it could be your only chance of waking up.”

Strathclyde Fire & Rescue will supply and fit a long life smoke alarm free of charge as part of the Home Fire Safety Visit process. Their call centre is open 24 hours a day, and they will arrange to fit a smoke alarm, and offer home safety advice, at a time that suits you.

Contact phone numbers:

Crimestoppers 0800 555 111

Strathclyde Police 0141 532 2000

Strathclyde Fire and Rescue 0800 0731 999

Renfrewshire Council Anti-social Behaviour Helpline 0800 169 1283

Renfrewshire Wardens Service 0141 889 3499

Renfrewshire kids enjoy the area’s first Winter Games

Around 200 Renfrewshire high school kids took part in the area’s first ever Winter Games last week.

S1 and S2 pupils from Renfrewshire’s high schools were invited to take part in the games at Linwood Sports Centre on Friday – which featured three indoor sports: Ultimate Frisbee, dodgeball and indoor curling.

Councillor Susan McDonald, Renfrewshire Council’s Sports Champion, said: “The 2011 Winter Games is a new and welcome addition to a well-established and popular Secondary School Sport Calendar.

“We have many after school clubs featuring dodgeball and Ultimate Frisbee as a result of pupils requests, so the Winter Games gave our lower high school pupils the chance to enjoy these sports in a larger-scale game situation.”

The winning teams for each category are

-Dodgeball: Castlehead High School
-Ultimate Frisbee: Renfrew High School
-Indoor curling: Renfrew High School

Please click on the link for photos.

For regular updates on local news and events follow @RenCouncilNews on Twitter or the council’s Renfrewshire page on Facebook.

Renfrewshire chamber

2011, for Renfrewshire Chamber has been one of its best ever years. It was officially the fastest growing Chamber in the UK, with growth of >25% and the reached the UK final of Chamber of the Year. The Chamber is on its way to approaching a target of 600 members by end of March 2012 – and to help it achieve that is offering new members the chance to join in January 2012 and save 25%. Our AGM and final event of the year (Christmas Lunch) are on Thu 15th December at the Glynhill.

Renfrewshire chamberThe Chamber uses Paisley venues as best it can – and in addition to its regular lunches, will be holding its 2nd B2B event at Paisley Town Hall – Business Matters in Renfrewshire on the 10th May 2012. The event in 2011 attracted 250 businesses. We are also planning to hold an event in the Museum / Observatory in early March.

To find out how your local Chamber can help your business “grow and prosper” visit

We’re very excited to be able to offer a new range of dance party packages at One Dance Studio. Ideal for Private Parties, Hen and Stag Nights, Birthdays, Anniversaries, Work Nights Out, Celebrations or just for fun, these include dance classes with one of our instructors, transport and a Party T-shirt for each of your friends.


Choose from a selection of options for both Adults and Kids:

The adults only “Party Like A Celeb” Night offers a Burlesque, Belly Dancing or Hip Hop dance lesson for you and your friends, a party vehicle to drive you on to your night time destination, party photos taken by a professional photographer and souvenir T-Shirt for each party-goer.

The kids party option includes a Hip Hop dance class with one of our talented instructors, the chance to play around in a fully equipped play bus, plus a One Dance Studio goodie bag and party photos taken by a professional photographer.

Prices start at £28 per person, with packages available for up to 23 people.

Other combinations are available to suit your requirements, contact us to talk how to make your dance party go with a swing!