The Scottish Government has now relaxed restrictions, and moved Scotland to level three, bringing significant easing of restrictions for retail and hospitality. 

You can read more about these measures and the very latest Scottish Government guidance here.

Under this move to level 3 hospitality venues such as cafés, pubs and restaurants can reopen, with a number of restrictions still in place.

Non-essential retail outlets and close contact services such as beauty salons can reopen as can travel accommodation.

In addition, indoor attractions and public buildings such as galleries, museums and libraries can also open.

Groups of up to six people from two households can meet in an indoor public place such as a café, pub or restaurant.

Six people from six households can also meet outdoors, in a private garden or a public place like a park.

Under 12s do not count towards the total number of people or households meeting outside – but do count towards the numbers of households meeting indoors.

Renfrewshire has a great range of outdoor attractions for exercise and recreation, provided you follow the existing guidance. Find out more about places you can visit in Renfrewshire here.

As local retail, tourism and hospitality businesses open their doors we would encourage those who can to support them by spending local where possible.

It’s vital that we all continue to follow the guidance and help stop the spread of coronavirus. Nothing is more important to us than your health and wellbeing.

We urge you all to please continue to follow the FACTS advice and stay safe:

F – Face coverings. These should be used in shops and on public transport (buses, trains and taxis)

A – Avoid crowded places

C – Clean your hands frequently, using water & soap whenever possible

T – Two metres – observe physical distancing

S – Self-isolate and book a test if you are suffering from COVID-19 symptoms

The team

Dedicated to equipping kids with cookery knowhow in their infancy, Totnosh tell us all about the benefits of getting your little ones acquainted with the kitchen and the fun that awaits.

Blog by Mill Magazine as part of Paisley Food and Drink Festival 2021.

Do you feel that it’s important to get kids engaging with cooking and acquiring skills from a young age? 

I think it’s really important to get children cooking and acquiring skills from a young age.

Cooking is a really important life skill. Getting children excited about and interested in cooking from a young age makes them more likely to continue cooking as they grow up.

Many children can go through fussy eating stages when they are young and become hesitant to try new foods. However, they are far more likely to try something if they have been involved in making it themselves.

I often have parents who are amazed at what their children have actually tried eating due to the classes. We encourage them to taste the ingredients as they are cooking which also helps, as does being in a fun relaxed environment where they see their peers trying different things.

You prioritise healthy eating when it comes to your recipes. Is this in an effort to instil healthy habits from an early age? 

The classes are designed to encourage children to take an interest in food and healthy eating, experience new tastes and learn basic cooking skills. We want to encourage healthy eating habits so we definitely prioritise healthy recipes, while informing children – and their parents – of healthy alternatives to popular food such as pizzas and burgers.

Promoting healthy eating habits is really important to us at Totnosh as we are really passionate about healthy diets for children, and studies have shown that children who learn to cook grow up to be healthier adults.

Poor diets have been shown to contribute to lower attainment at school and eating habits formed in childhood are thought to continue into adulthood. We do however make some treats and have special workshops on occasions such as Easter and Christmas where we’ll make some chocolatey goodies!

Do you feel that making cooking fun is one of the most important lessons that you impart?

The Totnosh classes are always fun – for the littlest chefs, we have our Totnosh song and handwashing song and in our Around the World classes, children will guess the clues to see which country we’re cooking food from that day.

It’s really important for the classes to be fun so that the children have a really positive cooking experience. We always make a big deal of the dishes that they’ve made so that they can feel a real sense of accomplishment and they get a certificate at the end of the course.

The classes are relaxed and fun and our parent and child classes provide a perfect activity for some bonding – as well as providing a window for some stress-free family cooking for mum or dad with no dishes or tidying up to do at the end of it!

Do you foresee the market for these classes getting bigger and bigger as Renfrewshire’s food and drink scene expands? 

The classes are extremely popular and we always have waiting lists and demand is always getting bigger as the word continues to  spread.

We also are really busy running classes in schools and for different organisations and have been busy running online sessions until we can get back into our premises at the end of this month.

Find out more about the Totnosh classes and how to get involved at the links below.

Look back on all the online fun at Paisley Food and Drink Festival 2021

The Paisley Florist Gardening Society Club & Growing Grounds Forum present this fantastic blog – Planting For Pollinators.

In the video above, join our beloved host ‘Buddy the Bee’ through a simple 4 step process to attract our much-needed pollinators.

Then, read the blog below and enter the garden of Secretary Liz…

Here at the Paisley Florist Society Gardening Club we want to help all expert and novice gardeners with our helpful hints and tips and to learn how to plant for our wee pollinators!

So please, come and explore Liz’s garden and find out what YOU can do this Spring!

Creative Ideas And Inventions To Use….

Planting for Polinators image 2

A fantastic way to reduce plastic can be by converting an old juice bottle into a watering can, (do your recycling kids!). You can also buy cheap nozzle tops for these inventions on amazon for as little as £2.59, so not only is it a fun crafty project that helps the environment but it’s inexpensive as well!

Speaking of recycling plastic, you can also use old ice cream cartons or any plastic tub really to plant your seeds in before repotting, just wash them out and re-use.

Planting for Polinators Image 3

All Things Seedy…

Where do I find these seeds to plant do I hear you ask? You can subscribe to a monthly armature gardening magazine for as little as £6 and you will receive free seeds to plant with, plus hints and tips given throughout magazine. However, if you do not wish to subscribe to anything your local supermarket will sell packets of various seeds when the season is right and right now is the perfect time for planting!

If you’re not too sure about planting and seeding but still want to help our little pollinators there is a fun accessory you can use to help them. As shown in the picture above you can buy what is known as a ‘Bee Bomb’ for £3.95, you just shake, pull the pin and thrown onto a patch of grass and various wildflowers that our little bees love will grow with little to no effort!

Planting for Polinators Image 4 Planting for Polinators Image 5

Anywhere Can Be A Garden….

If you don’t have a garden that’s okay, you can still join in on the fun by buying a window box to help the bees and butterflies going through the season!

All of our flowering plants all over the world relies on our pollinators and our little bumblebees and other tiny insects are declining rapidly! We need to do all we can to stop this, not only will this help our agriculture but it is a good and healthy activity to take part in.

Planting for Polinators Image 6

Let’s Do This Together!

After over a year of being stuck inside this is the perfect time to be outside interacting and helping nature and the environment. It’s a great way to teach kids and us adults the importance of looking after our little world that we love to live and explore in!

Planting for Polinators Image 7

Photograph by Mari Mitchell

Special Advice From Our President Mari Mitchell…

Why do we plan for pollinators?

The bulk of our food crops need pollinators and with the increased use of herbicides and pesticides there is now less and less habitats for the insects. So now we need to provide a place for them.

Why now, during the pandemic, is it important?

It helps us get out outside, we can still chat with our neighbours at a safe distance and get some fresh air. It’s a fun, healthy activity that everyone can join in on.

What is your favourite pollinator?

Oh! There’s a vast amount of pollinators, from moths, butterflies and various types of bumble bees, just to name a few, it would be hard to pick a favourite out of all of them!

What would your advice be to a novice gardener starting out?

I would say knowing what soil you have to determine what you can grow would be a god place to start and you can do that by looking what other near bye gardens are growing. I would also suggest reading magazines and catalogues as they always have handy hints.

Videos filmed by West College Scotland NC Media course students Lauren Stewart and Natalie Dineen.

Growing Grounds Forum is a network for all community growers to share practice and ideas amongst each other and to promote the benefits of growing to everyone in Renfrewshire.

Calling all music fans – The SAMA Paisley Takeover is returning for 2021!

The event is moving online this year, with fantastic artists hosting intimate performances from home each Thursday in March at 8pm.

The Paisley Takeover will see four artists join the bill – including two previous SAMA winners.

You can join the streams directly in this post, or alternatively via Renfrewshire Leisure’ YouTube channel here.

Here is your line-up:

Lizzie Reid

Thursday 4th March – 8pm

Lizzie Reid is one of Scotland’s most promising talents. An emotionally raw songwriter, Reid’s songs are microcosms of love, loss and heartbreak experienced in Glasgow’s streets, nightclubs and bars. She has supported the likes of The Staves and Nilufer Yanya and was scheduled to play this year’s Great Escape.

Watch Lizzie’s performance by clicking the video below.


Jenny Sturgeon

Thursday 11th March – 8pm

Singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Jenny Sturgeon is known for her stunning presentation of evocative folk music doused in rich imagery and atmospheric charm. Her music has been featured on BBC Radio Scotland, Radio 3, Radio 6 Music, Radio 2, and Radio Nan Gaidheal. In 2018 she was nominated as Composer Of The Year at the Scots Trad Music Awards.

Watch Jenny’s performance by clicking the video below.



Thursday 18th March – 8pm

Dave Hook writes rhymes. Sometimes Dave Hook calls himself Solareye.

Sometimes he raps with Stanley Odd. Mostly he makes stuff rhyme.



Kapil Seshasayee

Thursday 25th March – 8pm

Kapil Seshasayee is a polymath, both as a songwriter and as a soundsmith, creating something wholly unique. Combining electronica flourishes evoking FKA Twigs with Indian Classical guitar ornamentations, stunning vocals and a penchant for unorthodox instrumentation such as the aquaphone, Kapil manages to be truly experimental yet still accessible.

More great events this spring

Renfrewshire Libraries is marking Will Eisner Week with a series of online events.

“What is Will Eisner Week?”, we hear you ask.  Well, it’s a worldwide series of events, held from the first to the seventh of March each year, in libraries, schools, museums, comic book shops, bookstores, and other venues celebrating comics and sequential art, graphic novel literacy, free speech, and Will Eisner’s legacy.

Will Eisner (1917 – 2005) was a highly innovative and creative artist and writer who pioneered in the field of comics and graphic novels. He strongly advocated for the inclusion of graphic novels in library collections and sequential art on museum walls.

This is Renfrewshire Libraries fifth year of participation – and you can find out how to take part in the events here.

Plus, read all about each event below…

Matt Smith – Monday 1 March

Times: 11am – 12pm + 2pm – 3pm

Matt Smith is a Canadian/British cartoonist and comics educator. He has lived in countries all over the world but currently lives in Renfrew with his wife and two cats. He is best known for his autobiographical Smith vs Smith series which includes his latest graphic novel, You’re Stuck With Me Now, the true story of how Matt met his Scottish wife while teaching in Kuwait – and how she tricked him into becoming a cat guy.  Matt’s workshop will help the participants to understand the building blocks of comics as well as how to bring characters to life, in order to create a one page comic by the end of the session.

The only materials needed are a few sheets of A4 paper and a pencil.  A rubber, ruler, sharpener and black felt tip would be helpful but not essential.

The workshops are 1 hour long and will be conducted over Zoom.  They are recommended for ages 5 – 8 years.


Bryan and Mary Talbot

Time: From 6pm on Monday 1 March

Join the discussion between Costa Award winners Bryan and Mary Talbot and comic historian John McShane.

Bryan Talbot is a British comics artist and writer, best known as the creator of The Adventures of Luther Arkwright and its sequel Heart of Empire, the Grandville series of books and his time as an artist on series such as Nemesis the Warlock for 2000ad. His collaboration with his wife, Mary M. Talbot, to produce Dotter of Her Father’s Eyes, won them both the 2012 Costa biography award.

The YouTube link for this event will be available from 6.00pm on Monday 1 March here.


Gary Erskine – Tuesday 2 March 11am

Times: 12pm, 2pm – 3pm + 6pm – 8pm

As part of the Will Eisner Week 2021 celebrations, join Marvel Comics artist Gary Erskine for a FREE online Character Design Workshop. These self-contained workshops provide the basic building blocks to help inspire budding artists to design their own characters for a comic book or game. It will offer tips on how to bring your characters to life and help design your own hero/villain/monster/alien/robot’s costume with colour and textures.

Gary Erskine has worked for Marvel Comics, DC Comics, 2000AD, Dark Horse Comics and many others. He has also contributed to licenses including Star Wars, Star Trek, Doctor Who, Terminator and Transformers as well as storyboarding for the games industry including Spiderman: Shattered Dimensions and Pirates of the Caribbean: Armada of the Damned.

The only materials needed are a few sheets of A4 paper and a pencil.  A rubber, ruler, sharpener and black felt tip would be helpful but not essential.

The workshops during the day will both be 1 hour long and will be conducted over Zoom.  They are recommended for ages 8 – 12 years.

The evening workshop will be 2 hours long and will also be conducted over Zoom.  This workshop is for ages 16+.


Kev F Sutherland – Wednesday 3 March

Times: 10am – 12pm + 2pm – 4pm

Kev F is a comic writer and artist best known for his strips in the Beano. He’s worked from everyone from Marvel to Viz, Red Dwarf to Doctor Who. He’s recently published three Shakespearean graphic novels Findlay Macbeth, The Prince Of Denmark Street, and The Midsummer Night’s Dream Team.

By the end of Kev’s workshops, the group will have produced a comic containing a strip by every participant!

The only materials needed are a few sheets of A4 paper and a pencil.  A rubber, ruler, and black felt tip would be helpful but not essential.

The workshops will be 2 hours long and conducted over Zoom.

They are recommended for ages 8 – 12 years.


Metaphrog – Thursday 4 March

Times: 11am – 12pm + 2pm – 3pm

Metaphrog have been creating comics and graphic novels since 1996. Their graphic novels have received international acclaim and multiple award nominations, including three for the Eisner Awards, and Louis – Night Salad was also Highly Commended for the Scottish Children’s Book Awards 2011.

The workshops will be available to attendees on Renfrewshire Libraries YouTube channel for the times specified.


Viz Q&A – Friday 5 March

Time: From 7pm

In a pre-recorded interview, Simon Thorp and Graham Dury, of legendary comic Viz, will answer questions submitted by the general public. This event will be hosted by John McShane.

Watch this event on the Renfrewshire Libraries YouTube channel from 7pm on Friday 5 March 2021.


Cam Kennedy – Saturday 6 March

Time: From 6pm

Scottish comic artist legend Cam Kennedy will be discussing his 40+ years career with comic historian John McShane . Cam is best known for his work with 2000AD, as well as producing art for DC Comics and Marvel.

Watch this event on the Renfrewshire Libraries YouTube channel from 6pm on Saturday 6 March 2021.

Enjoy more online events this spring

The festival may be over... but you can still enjoy these online events

The Paisley Book Festival is going online for 2021 with a digital programme of events – and it begins on Thursday 18 February!

Reading and writing have been a great source of comfort for so many during lockdown – and the 10-day celebration will see a host of fantastic events for people of all ages and fans of all genres.

Paisley Book Festival has become a significant part of Scotland’s rich cultural landscape and this year’s excellent line-up of writers taking part, including the 2020 Booker Prize Winner, Douglas Stuart, confirms its place as a favourite for both authors and audiences.

You can enjoy events from writers from across the UK and further afield from the comfort of your own home between Thursday 18 – Saturday 27 February.

Shows and events will be streamed via the Paisley Book Festival YouTube channel – subscribe to the channel to be notified every time an event goes live.

Ahead of the festival, we take a look at seven events you definitely don’t want to miss


Opening Event: Radical New Futures 

Join in the launch of this year’s festival and get a taste of what’s in store over the next ten days. On the bill is poet, playwright and performer Hannah Lavery, whose recent works include The Drift and Lament for Sheku Bayoh, and writer Laura Waddell, whose recent book, Exit, is a wide-ranging exploration of exit signs and what might be on the other side. Renfrewshire local Alan Bissett will also discuss his new novella, Lazy Susan, which explores many possible futures for a young social media influencer on the party scene.



Scottish Masculinities with Douglas Stuart, Andrew O’Hagan and Graeme Armstrong 

Join Kirstin Innes as she chats to three Scottish novelists who have shone a light on the complexities of masculine identity, offering parallel lives from Lanarkshire, Ayrshire and Glasgow. Andrew O’Hagan’s Mayflies made headlines last year for its sensitive and honest portrayal of male friendship, whilst Graeme Armstrong’s The Young Team draws on its author’s own experience coming of age amidst gang culture and sectarian violence. Douglas Stuart’s Booker-winning Shuggie Bain won hearts with its portrayal of young Shuggie and his mother Agnes, struggling to get by in the schemes and coming to terms with his sexual identity.



The Writer-in-Residence presents

This event celebrates the community outreach work that Imogen Stirling has facilitated through her role as Paisley Book Festival’s first Writer-in-Residence over the past few months. Join her as she welcomes some of Paisley’s finest to share the work they have created together during her residency. Imogen will also be revealing an inspiring new product, which reflects the collective input of the residency workshop participants and represents the radical spirit of the Paisley community.



Writing Dystopias: Adam Roberts in conversation with Katie Hale

We welcome two writers who look to the dark side of the future, and ask what reason there is to still be hopeful. Adam Roberts, best known for his fantasy and science fiction, introduces It’s the End of the World: But what are we really afraid of?, as he explores the psychology behind our obsession with the apocalypse. Chaired and led by fellow dystopian writer Katie Hale, whose debut novel My Name is Monster – inspired by Robinson Crusoe and Frankenstein – imagines a post-Sickness world where one person believes they are the only one left.



Radical Voices with Tannahill Arts and Heritage

Tannahill Arts and Heritage brings world-class artists to Paisley, including the finest homegrown talent. In this unique collaboration with Paisley Book Festival, poetry old and new will be brought to life in new music composed and performed by Paisley’s own composer Alan Fleming-Baird, soprano Stephanie Strachan, and pianist Toni James. By bringing music and words together, these artists fuel the imagination and explore themes of poverty, love, our relationship with the natural world and the human condition. Enjoy an intimate, expressive, musical meditation that steps back in time in order to look to the future.



Janey Godley: Frank Get The Door

Janey Godley is a multi-award-winning comedienne, playwright, blogger, author and journalist from Glasgow, who has performed her comedy shows and one-woman play around the world. Last year she was described as a ‘national treasure’ for her hilarious voice over videos of the First Minister, which brought much needed light relief to the Scottish public during the pandemic. In this special event, Janey chats with Jenny Niven about how Frank Get The Door made it into print, as well as some further writing projects she’s got in the pipeline.



Festival Finale: The Bookshop Band

Celebrate the end of Paisley Book Festival 2021 with a special performance curated on the theme of Radical New Futures from The Bookshop Band. This offspring of an artistic love-affair between a duo of English folk singer-songwriters and a multi-award winning independent bookshop, Mr B’s Emporium of Reading Delights in Wigtown, Scotland. They write and perform songs inspired by books – and have released 13 studio albums featuring many of the authors they have worked with. Join in and raise a toast to the rest of 2021 (and beyond), and the bookish delights it will bring!

Between 15 February – 26 March 2021, Paisley Book Festival will also feature a schools programme with a series of videos created by some of the UK’s most talented children and YA authors. Take a closer look at these videos here.

Remember to check out the full programme for Paisley Book Festival 2021 here.

Whilst current restrictions mean that this year’s festival will be very different to its inaugural iteration back in February 2020, we are thrilled to be bringing the energy and spirit of Paisley and its people, their resilience and determination to look forward to a new and different future, to digital audiences this year. Whether you live in Paisley or not, we hope you’ll join us from wherever you are to celebrate the radical spirit that is well and truly alive in the world of books, and in the acts of reading and writing.

Jess Orr
Paisley Book Festival Co-Producer

Out of Place arts programme by Renfrewshire Leisure

Enjoy fantastic music, film, visual arts, creative workshops and masterclasses this spring with the Out of Place online arts programme, brought to you by Paisley Arts Centre and Renfrewshire Leisure.

Music fans can tune into the Ren TV online channel to hear artists and bands perform in the Stuck In The House Sessions. During February and in conjunction with the Sofar Sounds Glasgow online artists community, performers will include Ghanian-born songwriter and guitarist, Nathan Somevi and Paisley-based singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist, Becca Starr, with other artists to be confirmed.

The Scottish Alternative Music Awards (SAMA) move their annual Paisley Takeover at Paisley Arts Centre to an online virtual music experience. This year’s programme includes four performances from Scottish artists that were filmed at home and will be broadcast on Ren TV each Thursday, during March, at 8pm.

There are two premieres planned for February 24 and March 3 featuring Laura Fisher and Sonia Kilmann. By visiting Ren TV listeners can hear Going In-Going Out – an audio performance and shared dance event for people to take part in while in their own homes. During the performance they will be gently guided through movement and relaxation.

A companion broadcast is called Going Out-Going In, which is an audio performance designed to be listened to through headphones, which takes the listener on a journey through their local area to a music soundtrack.

Going In - Going Out show as part of the Out of Place arts programme

Alongside the digital programme, an outdoor visual arts project – Talk of the Town – will feature on a billboard outside the main entrance to Paisley’s Gilmour Street Station with three specially commissioned pieces of writing from Renfrewshire-based artists on display between February 22 to April 6.

The first piece is Roddy Scott’s Sma’ Shot Reel; the second is from David Rae, whose words draw on the romance of meeting and parting at the station and the third in the series is from Kick The Door Theatre t whose piece asks – with that all behind us, what next?

Following the success of Ren TV’s Reeling Through The Years series of local films last year, the popular series of films featuring a selection of archive footage about local characters, history and culture will return.

It’s the first time this latest selection of films, from Paul Russell, Alex Cathcart and members of the Renfrewshire Camcorder Club, will be seen in digital format.

While Paisley Arts Centre remains closed, Renfrewshire Leisure’s Arts team will be delivering a series of free online creative learning workshops with something for everyone from storytelling for under-5s to dancing for the over-60s.

The team has produced an online programme of free masterclasses to encourage artistic and creative excellence among Renfrewshire-based artists and will be delivered by artists such as outstanding musician Rachel Sermanni and award winning filmmaker Kenny Glenaan

Musician Rachel Sermanni will host a masterclass as part of the Out of Place programme

Musician Rachel Sermanni

The Creative learning workshops and masterclasses are supported by Creative Scotland’s Performing Arts Venue Relief Fund, supporting artists to continue to make work and reach audiences during the Covid pandemic.

See the full Out of Place programme and how to get involved here.

The Out of Place events are made possible with the support of Future Paisley. Future Paisley is the radical and wide-ranging programme of events, activity and investment using the town’s unique and internationally-significant cultural stories to transform its future.

Plus, make sure you don't miss...

The Paisley Book Festival will return in 2021 with a fantastic digital programme of events to enjoy from Thursday 18 – Saturday 27 February.

In 1880, Benjamin Disraeli famously said “Keep your eye on Paisley!” Paisley has a long history of radicalism, of finding strength in facing up to and overcoming adversity in whatever shape or form it might take.

The theme for the 2021 Paisley Book Festival, Radical New Futures, emerged from the Covid-19 pandemic and the resilience and fortitude that people and communities have shown. It has also been motivated by the importance that green spaces have played as solace and recuperation over the last year.

Books and reading have been a great source of comfort for so many people during lockdown, evidenced by increased borrowing figures at Renfrewshire Libraries.

The Paisley Book Festival 2021 will welcome the 2020 Booker Prize winner, Douglas Stuart, who will be joined by two other Scottish literary giants, Andrew O’Hagan and Graeme Armstrong.

Other headline events will include Janey Godley, Melanie Reid, Chris Brookmyre and Dr. Marisa Haetzman, writer for Small Axe series Courttia Newland, Salena Godden, Jenny Kleeman, Kirstin Innes, and Kate Charlesworth in conversation with Val McDermid.

Events for children will include Ross Mackenzie, Vivian French, Patience Agbabi, Karine Polwart and Kate Leiper.

Setting the tone for the Festival on its opening night – Radical New Futures – will be poet, playwright and performer Hannah Lavery (The Drift and Lament for Sheku Boyah), writer Laura Waddell (Exit) and Renfrewshire local Alan Bissett with his new novella Lazy Suzan. The opening night will also include Newtopia: Women with Fierce Words, a multimedia performance of writing emerging from women’s disrupted lives as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, presented by Women With Fierce Words and joined from India by the award-winning poet, Saima Afreen.

Paisley Book Festival welcomes novelist, poet, performer, Kirsty Logan and author and singer-songwriter Malachy Tallack as guest curators. Kirsty has curated a strand Understories: Reclaiming the stories we think we know with authors Intan Paramaditha, Sarah Maria Griffin, Kiran Millwood Hargrave, Rebecca Tamas, Michael Lee Richardson and Tasha Suri. Malachy welcomes authors Alastair McIntosh, Kapka Kassabova, Patrick Laurie, Cal Flyn and Lisa Wollett to the festival as part of an event strand called A Place for Hope: land, loss and the politics of care.

See the full programme at:

Whilst current restrictions mean that this year’s festival will be very different to its inaugural iteration back in February 2020, we are thrilled to be bringing the energy and spirit of Paisley and its people, their resilience and determination to look forward to a new and different future, to digital audiences this year. Whether you live in Paisley or not, we hope you’ll join us from wherever you are to celebrate the radical spirit that is well and truly alive in the world of books, and in the acts of reading and writing.

Jess Orr
Paisley Book Festival Co-Producer

The Festival also welcomes Glasgow-based writer, musician, and educator, Imogen Stirling, as its first Writer-in-Residence. This residency will see her hosting online workshops with Renfrewshire community groups in January and February 2021, and writing her own response to this year’s festival theme, Radical New Futures. Imogen will curate and host three festival events which include Imogen’s Big Night In with Dean Atta, Iona Lee and Emme Woods and Radicalism in Stillness with her  in conversation with Sarah Grant

In addition, the Festival will host a schools and learning programme, #YoungFutures, by releasing a series of original videos, created by some of the UK’s most talented children and young adult authors. It will encourage schools across Paisley and Renfrewshire to watch these videos either at home or in their classrooms and engage with the authors’ ideas about what a radical future looks like to them.

The 2021 Paisley Book Festival programme has something for everyone and it looks forward to welcoming you to its digital stage.

The Paisley Book Festival is supported by Future Paisley, a programme of economic, social, and physical regeneration continuing the excitement and momentum experienced during the town’s UK City of Culture 2021 Bid. It is delivered by Renfrewshire Leisure and funded by Renfrewshire Council. 

Through support from Creative Scotland, we were delighted to appoint Glasgow-based writer, musician, and educator Imogen Stirling as our first Writer-in-Residence. Imogen has this week kicked off her online workshops with community groups across Renfrewshire enabling us to engage more local people as well as curating three of our wider book festival events. This new post has been such a significant addition to the Festival, and one which we hope will continue with future festivals.

Keira Brown
Paisley Book Festival Co-Producer

It wouldn’t be Christmas with the family without a bit of decorating, wrapping presents and some arts and crafts.

While we’re all putting up our Christmas trees and lighting up our houses, there are plenty of fantastic budget-friendly ways to get creative and let your imagination run wild.

We’d love to see all of your spectacular Christmas lights – and you can share pictures of your Christmas tree, lights and stunning household decorations with via our Facebook and Twitter channels, or by using #LightUpRenfrewshire on social media.

So, while we’re all being urged to stay safe at home, here are some ideas for how you can get crafty this Christmas.

Decorations and crafts




Make your own Christmas cards

If you want to add a personal touch when sending someone a Christmas card this year, then why not try your hand at making one yourself?

Whether you fancy creating a pop-out Christmas tree, a smiling Santa or even a shiny snowman, these ideas will make sending a card to your loved ones even more special this Christmas.


See more great Christmas decorations and craft ideas on Pinterest here.

More festive fun this Christmas