Paisley excellent for tourists says Visit Scotland.
The award follows a series of secret inspections by mystery shoppers from Visit Scotland, the national tourism organisation.
The grading system focuses on the standard of the welcome, hospitality and service attractions provide. The Renfrewshire Council attractions were awarded three stars in 2011.
Councillor Jim Harte, Convener of Renfrewshire Council’s Sport Leisure and Culture Policy Board, said, “Paisley Museum is home to an iconic and nationally significant collection of artefacts including the Arbuthnott Missal. Side by side with this mediaeval treasure are contemporary exhibitions including the incredibly popular Lego Brick City.
“Visit Scotland has recognised the sheer quality of the museum and the observatory and the dedication of the employees who make both attractions so welcoming for visitors.
“After the inspection in 2011 the council decided to aim for four stars. An improvement plan was put in place and it is excellent news that our efforts have paid off.
“As part of the improvement plan we installed a new automated planetarium in the Coats Observatory. We also invested £110,000 in a nine month restoration of the Pillar Gallery. During the modernisation, a suspended roof installed in the 1960’s was taken down unveiling the Victorian splendour of the original twin barrel vaulted ceiling.
“The next step is clearly achieving five stars and that’s our target for 2015.”
The number of stars awarded to an attraction tells visitors what they can expect:
* 1 star – clean and tidy, a fair and acceptable, if basic, standard
* 2 stars – a good overall standard
* 3 stars – a very good standard
* 4 stars – an excellent standard
* 5 stars – an exceptional standard.
The Paisley Museum opened in 1871. The building was designed by the well-known Glasgow architect John Honeyman and paid for by Sir Peter Coats of the famous Coats thread manufacturing family.
The museum is home to Paisley Shawl Collection which is a Recognised Collection of National Significance to Scotland.
Coats Observatory opened in 1883 and is the oldest public observatory in Scotland. It was gifted to the people of Paisley by Thomas Coats and was also designed by John Honeyman.
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