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local community, local business, local life .........

Falling into Autumn...

We are very excited at the Advertizer office as we have been hearing from more and more of our clients who are, at long last, able to get back to business. It’s also lovely to see new businesses moving into some of the shops that have been lying empty, maintaining the variety and vibrance of our village streets. Our local groups and clubs are getting back to face-to-face meetings, albeit with social distancing and safety in mind. And possibly the most exciting news so far is that the Santa Sleigh team are getting ready and planning their routes for December! Anyone who is interested in getting involved is invited to attend at the Hope Hall, Bridge of Weir on Tuesday 2nd November at 7pm. COVER IMAGE: Poppies for Remembrance Sunday, which will be held on 14th November 2021.

Next Deadline: 10th November 2021 for DECEMBER 21 issue

Contact us: 01505 613340 07521 651936

We’ve heard that many of the regular local bonfire and fireworks events will not be taking place this year. The Knapps event and Inverclyde Council’s event at Battery Park have been cancelled, along with the regular Paisley extravaganza. Unfortunately, we had issues with our email and phone lines last week, so if we have missed any news items due to this, we can only apologise - it was outwith our control. Finally, don’t forget to put your clocks back one hour on Sunday 31st October. The old saying, “Spring forward, Fall back” helps us remember which way to go.

Shop local - support your community! In this issue... 10th Erskine walk of hope


Which online safety campaign


Angel voices


BoW Festival Santa Sleigh



St Vincent’s Firewalk


Book release


1st floor, Neva Place, Bridge of Weir PA11 3PN

Toy bank Christmas appeal


Winter festival


Guide Dogs fundraiser retires


Schools & Sports

Gryffe Valley Rotary




GPS Signage installed at Gryffe


Regular meets


Soroptimists Centenary


Out & about

village news Host - Carrick Centre Previous issues available online:

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classified ads



Sales & Wants


Advertizer ads directory


Local history


Coming events


panto season


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November 2021


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local community, local business, local life .........


The Firewalk Join us for our Hottest Fundraising event EVER!! SATURDAY, 13TH NOVEMBER 2021 at St. Vincent’s Hospice, Howwood, 7pm - 9pm For more information and details on how to register please; Email or Tel 01505 705635 Ext 303 Registration: £10, includes a free T-shirt!

10th Erskine Walk of Hope Angel Voices St Fillan’s Community Children’s Choir Rehearsals on Fridays at 6pm in St Fillan’s Church Hall, Moss Road Kilmacolm Music Director, Mrs Anne Lawrence and Teacher/Accompanist, Mr Michael Hepburn. Administrators: Dr Vivienne Smith, Mrs Maureen Russell New members welcome! (ages range from 4 to 13) Contact: Maureen Russell: or on mobile: 07905-950028

Renfrewshire Toy Bank Christmas Appeal We have been preparing for Christmas for a long time behind the scenes and cannot thank all of the local businesses and organisations enough for getting behind us yet again. Referrals have started to come in and we are expecting this year to be our busiest yet with more places referring than ever before.

On Saturday 11th September 2021 Margaret Moncrieff and friends did a sponsored Walk of Hope along the banks of the Clyde at Erskine to increase awareness of Huntington’s disease and to raise funds for Scottish Huntington’s Association (SHA). This was the 10th anniversary of this Walk. SHA is the only Scottish charity dedicated to helping people affected by Huntington’s disease (HD). HD is a desperately cruel condition which over a period of perhaps as long as 25 years reduces an adult to a state of total dependence for emotional and physical support. Other members of the family may have to accept that this is a genetic condition and every child of a parent with HD has a 50/50 risk of inheriting the faulty gene and therefore developing the condition. It was a lovely day and we all enjoyed the Walk. We were joined by friends from Houston, Erskine, Bishopton and Glasgow. The amazing sum of £1,300 has been raised to date. Thanks are due to members of Houston & Killellan Kirk, staff and partners of Walker Laird, Solicitors, friends from Erskine and surrounding areas and our families. Very many thanks to all who contributed. Donations can still be made to the following JustGiving page:

Drop-off points will open on the 1st of November with even more locations to make it as easy as possible to donate. We are however looking for somewhere else in Bishopton if anyone can help us out? Check our Facebook page for drop off points. *Please note that we only accept donations of new toys and gifts* We cannot thank everyone who supports us enough. The toy bank has become such a vital service to the children of Renfrewshire and we hope to be able to complete all referrals this year to help ensure no local child goes without this Christmas. We have an Amazon wish list and we are delighted to take PayPal donations or bank transfers. Please check out our Facebook page for details: Thank you, Renfrewshire we couldn’t do this without you.

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November 2021


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local community, local business, local life .........


Local Guide dogs fundraiser retires after 10 years volunteering Guide Dogs has paid tribute to volunteer Anne Ferguson who has retired after leading the charity’s West Renfrewshire fundraising group for 10 years. Anne, from Johnstone, helped raise both money and awareness of Guide Dogs in the area in her role as group coordinator - and the charity is now appealing for a new volunteer to take on the challenge. Tammy McMichael, Community Fundraising Relationship Manager, said: “Anne has been a huge part of the fundraising family at Guide Dogs, leading the way with passion, enthusiasm, and a genuine commitment to Guide Dogs’ mission to support people with sight loss to live the life they choose. “By giving her time and energy, Anne has allowed our charity to continue supporting people with sight loss in West Renfrewshire and beyond. It is with great sadness that I wish Anne a very happy retirement from volunteering and hope she knows how much she will be missed – not just by me, but by all the staff and volunteers who have had the pleasure of working alongside her these last 10 years.” The group, run entirely by volunteers, is now in need of a new group coordinator to help organise events and raise funds for the charity. Tammy continued: “Being part of the group is a great way to make new friends, while helping to raise awareness and funds for Guide Dogs, especially now that we can get back out and about again. The group coordinator is the key contact for the branch in the local community, helping to organise a variety of activities such as collections, social events and tea parties. We’re looking for someone who is enthusiastic, a good communicator and likes working as a team.” The West Renfrewshire fundraising group is open to anyone who would like to support a good cause and be part of a local social group. Tammy said: “It costs around £60,000 to support a guide dog from birth to retirement and Guide Dogs relies almost entirely on public donations, so the support we get from our local groups is vital. If you’re from the area and think you could help us, please get in touch.” Volunteers must be aged 16 or over and Guide Dogs will provide all the training required for each role. Visit or contact Volunteer Coordinator Heather Valentine at: or on 07867 141453 for more information.

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November 2021


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local community, local business, local life .........



Travel Actually Has Moved Having worked from home for the past 20 months whilst the Travel Industry came to a complete standstill, we have decided to close the doors of our shop in Kilmacolm, and continue to work from home. Our business remains the same. We are still fully ABTA and ATOL bonded, and we remain members of the Barrhead Travel Group. Although travel had all but ceased, we have been extremely busy rebooking holidays and securing refunds for every cancelled booking. We have to say a huge Thank You to all of our loyal customers for their patience and understanding over this period and we take pride in the knowledge that we looked after every customer; refunded every cancelled booking in full; and rebooked many for 2022 and 2023. As the Advertizer goes to press we are delighted to say that restrictions are easing and the world of travel is beginning to return to some signs

Rotary Gryffe Valley We hope to commence regular meal meetings in our new venue the Fox and Hounds from the 27th October.

End Polio Now: Our annual Curry Night, held on 21st October in aid of End Polio Now, was once again a Carry Out Curry night on Zoom. All funds raised will go to End Polio Now and will be matched by the Gates Foundation on a 2 for 1 ratio.

Walk for Health: The club has started work on a project to encourage walking locally in the knowledge that walking is good for both physical and mental health. We would like to make contact with all local walking clubs in our area (Kilmacolm, Quarriers, Bridge of Weir, Houston, Crosslee, Brookfield, Kilbarchan, Howwood and Lochwinnoch) with a view to promoting them through the project. Please email with contact details for walking groups.

General: Club Representatives attended the Rotary District Conference and heard an interesting array of speakers. We were pleased to nominate our own Andrew Macleman as an Assistant District Governor for the forthcoming year.

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of normality. It is still early days, and whilst many will wait a while longer before their confidence returns, we can report that for those who have taken the plunge to travel in the last few weeks, it has been surprisingly easy, and everyone has felt very safe. Now, more than ever, it is important to book with a reputable Travel Professional, who will guide you through the requirements and ensure your booking and money is safe if things go wrong. The World is opening, and you can be assured of First Class service at Travel Actually, with knowledgeable and experienced professionals. Thank you again to everyone who has booked with us in the past, and you look forward to booking your long awaited holiday in the future.

Ar󰇰e󰈡󰇪, Sha󰇶󰈦󰈢n 󰈜󰇳󰈨 Cha󰇶󰇱󰈢t󰇹󰈥. Corporate Membership: We welcome new corporate members who would like to be associated with Rotary and the charitable work we carry out. This offers opportunities to network with members and support our work. Anyone interested in Rotary can contact us through our web or Facebook page or email gryffevalleyrotary@ .

Speaker Meetings: Meetings using Zoom on the internet have continued giving the opportunity for a variety of interesting speakers from near and far. Our series of speakers on Climate Change ahead of the COP 26 Conference continued and John Waddell spoke on Rotary Foundation, the international Rotary Charity. The series concludes with Peter Grant, Business Director INEOS Grangemouth – Environmental issues for INEOS as we move towards 2050 on 6th October, Professor John Gibbons – Net zero gas emissions for 2050 on 13th October, Stuart Hazeldine – Managing Greenhouse gas emissions and storage in Scotland on 27th October and on 3rd November- Lucia Fawsset & Karen Gilmore- Legal observers at COP26. We are pleased to invite people interested to join in these meetings on this important topic. Please email to arrange an invite.

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November 2021


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local community, local business, local life .........


Renfrewshire Council to install GPS signage to improve safety along the river gryffe Councillors in Renfrewshire have agreed to install GPS signage along the banks of the River Gryffe as part of a drive to improve water safety. Seven new signs will be placed at six potentially dangerous areas along the river and will have a designated code which allow emergency responders to know exactly where a distress call is coming from. It is one of the first actions of the Renfrewshire Water Safety Working Group which brings together Renfrewshire Council, Renfrewshire Leisure, Police Scotland, Scottish Fire and Rescue Service, Scottish Ambulance Service and Open Water Rescue, and formalises the ongoing work to improve water safety in Renfrewshire. The enhanced safety measures at the River Gryffe follow the tragic death of a young boy earlier this year at this location and the new measures have been implemented following discussions with his family, local community members and Community Councils. With assistance from the Glasgow Humane Society, temporary life belts, poles and throw ropes have already been located on the riverbanks and these are regularly checked by the community and have been replaced by the society when any issues have arisen. The new GPS signs will add to this equipment and new permanent life belts, throw ropes and ‘Danger – Deep Water’ signs will also be installed by the Council.

Councillor Marie McGurk, Convener of Renfrewshire Council’s Communities, Housing and Planning Policy Board, said: “It’s important that young people know how dangerous open water swimming can be and the tragic accident this summer was a harrowing reminder to avoid swimming in locations like these. “We want to make sure though that these areas are as safe as they can be if people ignore this advice and the new GPS signage will mean the emergency services can respond as quickly as possible should they be needed. “It’s an important first step for our new working group and I’m pleased that we’ve created this partnership approach to ensure that we can give as much information to young people as possible and equip them with the knowledge to stay safe and out of the water.” Where the equipment is located on land not in Council ownership, liaison will take place with landowner wherever possible, and the Council has committed to working with the community and landowner to assist with any damage to the life-saving equipment. The Renfrewshire Water Safety Working Group will also continue to work closely as a partnership to educate young people about the dangers of open water swimming and will deliver presentations to schools, as well as in-person talks with local young people at known spots for open water swimming.

Soroptimists in Paisley Prepare to Celebrate Members of Soroptimist International of Paisley held their first face to face meeting for eighteen months last week. The timing was perfect as they prepare to mark the centenary of Soroptimist International on 3rd October with an online conference which will be attended by members from across the globe. As part of a global ceremony, four candles were lit – one each for the Club, our Region of Scotland South, our Federation of Great Britain and Ireland, and for Soroptimist International itself. Along with our Soroptimist sisters, we wish for a brilliant future for all women and girls. The very first Soroptimist Club was founded in Oakland, California on 3rd October 1921. The first major project undertaken by the Oakland Club concerned the environment with legislative advocacy to “Save the Redwoods”– the great ancient trees which were being felled unmercifully. Soroptimists lobbied the legislature, took on the powerful lumber companies, and gained public support for the project. The result was that the major portion of the redwoods was set aside in a protected reserve and still stands today. Many trees are being planted by clubs as an appropriate way to mark this special year reflecting our continuing concern with the environment. In the years that followed, the organisation spread across the globe, expanding and developing the original intent to be a service organisation looking to bring about change to the lives of women and girls worldwide. Through this global network, members are driven by the mission of transforming lives through education, empowerment and by enabling opportunities for women and girls. To read more about us and our history, visit Ladies in the attached photo L – R: Sheena Macfarlane, Sheena McDonald, Margaret Neil, Elsie Sutherland

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November 2021


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local community, local business, local life .........

village news WARD 11 Cllr James MacLaren The group which I tentatively called Blooming Bishopton have agreed to call themselves Bonnie Bishopton and work has begun to transform the land at the edge of Greenock Road in front of the Community Centre, where in a few days, there will be a delivery of top soil and we will be there planting bulbs and shrubs. Membership is growing fast and new members are coming on board to help. You may have seen them at work tidying up the bushes around the library. Funding from the community council and the Co-op has been welcomed. Future projects, including Christmas lighting, are being considered. It is anticipated that this work to upgrade the existing Bishopton Health Centre will commence early 2022 and be completed in the summer 2022. The work on a new build facility in Dargavel is anticipated to begin summer 2023 with completion spring 2024. Then we will have one health centre in two buildings. Dargavel Primary School will open on Thursday 6th January. To support transition both schools will finish the term on Monday 20th December 2021. The council have allocated £1.2 million of the annual roads capital budget over three years for communities to decide on how it is spent. The funding is split across Renfrewshire so not all the funding can be spent in the one place. You have until 14th November to submit suggestions. Here are some of my suggestions: Bridge of Weir: - i) Resurface part of Mill of Gryffe Road. ii) Add additional Gullies to Houston Road (this should mean less puddles on the road meaning children walking to school stay drier, and the road lasts longer. iii) Upgrade the footpath through The Glen and Horsewood Park. Bishopton: - i) upgrade and adoption of footpaths such as Yarrow Crescent to Kingston Rd, and those in Dargavel, etc. Langbank: - i) Repairs to the footpath and its adoption at the west side of Station Road Park. ii) Additional gullies at the bottom of Station Road and on Main Road. iii) A barrier between the A8 and the cycle track leading to Hatton Brae. iv) A pedestrian bridge over the A8. All suggestions are welcome. From February 2022 all homes in Scotland must be fitted with interlinking smoke and heat alarms. In addition carbon monoxide alarms are required if there is a carbon-fuelled appliance or flue. All alarms must be powered either from the mains electricity circuit or by a sealed battery lasting the full life-span of the alarm. Smoke and heat alarms must either be interlinked by cable or by wireless radio-frequency interlink. Whilst nobody will be prosecuted, this is a safety measure, and it is hoped most people will see the benefits of it. So far only my Bridge of Weir surgery is available - the others are still to be agreed. Tel: 0300 300 1291 or you can email me: Working with you and improving our local area. Please feel free to contact me with any of your concerns, and I am happy to meet with you at a mutually convenient time.

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The Bridge Happy 10th Birthday to The Bridge!!!. The Bridge became a viable entity due to the help and support of many individuals and organisations - money raised by residents of the village, provision of the building at a nominal rent from Renfrewshire Council, various grants to enable us to grow, practical work carried out to make The Bridge a pleasant place to visit, financial and organisational expertise and the support of trustees, volunteers, employees and customers all of which we greatly appreciate. The Shop - we started off by with two spinners of cards and a limited selection of stationery for sale. Over the years our stock has grown to provide customers with a great selection. The First Christmas and beyond - we bought packs of Traidcraft cards from a local shop. We now buy Traidcraft cards direct from Traidcraft and commission our own “The Bridge” cards which promote our Mission Statement far and wide as well as selling a large variety of individual Christmas cards. For many years the Paisley Colour Photographic Club has produced stunning photographs for The Bridge Of Weir calendar - a must buy for 2022. Please come in and purchase from our selection of goods. Post Office – a Gift Card is a good way of sending Christmas good wishes. These can be exchanged in many well known stores. Please ask Donald, Alison or Fiona for details. Christmas stamps will be on sale on 2nd November. Please remember the overseas posting deadlines!!! Ask our Post Office staff for details. In the run up to Christmas even although there is no mandatory requirement for Social Distancing please be mindful of the safety of your fellow customers. Hand sanitizers are available throughout The Bridge. Opening Hours: Mon – 10am to 1pm then 2pm to 5pm; Tues, Wed, Thurs, Fri and Sat 10am to 1pm

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November 2021


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local community, local business, local life .........


Houston and Killellan Agricultural Society The Annual Quiz Night will be held on Friday 26th November in the J.G.Fleming Bowling Club, Houston. We hope that this will be well supported as we missed out last year. Tickets are £5 to include a light supper. For more information please contact Isabelle Stuart on 07508 905298 or e mail:

ward 10 Cllr Audrey Doig 1st Bridge of Weir (Wednesday) Guides Many congratulations to Amie Carson and Beth Robinson who were recently awarded their Guide Section Gold Awards, the highest award they attain. Both girls worked really hard to finish their award which wasn’t made easy when the Unit, during lockdown, moved to online meetings over Zoom. Well done girls! Both girls will continue in Guiding and will be Young Leaders with the Rainbow Units in Bridge of Weir and Kilmacolm. Girlguiding Bridge of Weir & Kilmacolm currently have spaces in the Guide Section (girls aged 10-14 years). Any girls interested should register at

Bridge of Weir SWI We had an enjoyable evening in October for our first meeting in the Cargill Hall with a beautifully illustrated talk on China. We next meet on Thursday 4th November at 7.30pm when we will be making Christmas wreaths.

House Wanted House or Bungalow - Min 3 beds - Detached or older Semi preferred in Houston, Kilmacolm, or Bridge of Weir area. Sunny back garden. CASH WAITING

Please call: 07753 659804

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I am pleased to report that the last full meeting of Renfrewshire Council passed a motion which committed the Council to expenditure for specialist Locator equipment which will complement the lifesaving equipment on the River Gryffe. This equipment provides for exact co-ordinates to be provided which will be of enormous assistance to emergency services when trying to locate the exact site of an incident, this was a serious issue in the recent tragic case of the Linwood boy who died swimming in the river Gryffe, so this is a tremendous step forward in health and safety terms. I am pleased to report that council officers have contacted me this week to confirm that all the tenders for the Rural Safe Walking Initiative have just been received, and the contract as to who the consultant is will be awarded in November this year. Following that a report will be provided so that community consultation can begin with communities in Howwood, Kilbarchan, and Houston. This initiative has ‘to consult with Elected Members, Police, Community Councils and other local resident groups to understand the nature, severity and location of the issues’, before and after the installation of the traffic calming measures. I am very excited about this as this will be a solution made in Houston for Houston, not the usual situation where Paisley-based Council Officers dictate to Houston what they will get. At long last, after a Covid ban of 18 months, Councillors are being allowed to resume face to face surgeries once again. Whilst most enquiries can be dealt with by either phone or email many council enquiries can be of a sensitive and discrete nature so a face to face discussion can be much better. I am delighted to report that my new advice surgeries will be held on Thursday 21st Oct in Brookfield Village Hall at 6.30pm, Thursday 28th Oct in Linwood TESCO Café at 6.30pm, and Thursday 18th November in the Carrick Centre, Houston, also at 6.30pm. Contact Details for Cllr Audrey Doig: Councillors are now resuming advice surgeries again, but in addition you can also email me on cllr.audrey. or call me on 07768 130935 if you have a civic matter you wish to raise with me.

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November 2021


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local community, local business, local life .........

Houston & Killellan Kirk CrossReach is the social work arm of the Church of Scotland. Among the services they offer is a visitors’ support and advice service at Perth Prison and a visitors’ centre family hub at Polmont Prison. These services offer safe and welcoming places for families to relax before and after a prison visit. For children there are toys to play with and books to read, and free refreshments. Keeping families in touch with prisoners is a “golden thread” which helps to minimise re-offending. Many of the children of prisoners have very little and, when it comes to Christmas, they can feel very left out. The CrossReach prison visitor service aims to provide a gift at Christmas to each of the children with whom it comes into contact. It can only do this through the generosity of donations. It is hoped that the congregation of Houston & Killellan Kirk will generously support it again this Christmas. The request is to put NEW unwrapped gifts in open gift bags, with an indication of age, and boy or girl. The plan is to have the gifts collected at the Small West Hall, Main Street, Houston, with no social contact, at the same time as the Foodbank donations continue to be received on Tuesdays 23rd & 30th November 10am – 12noon and 7pm – 8pm. We’re looking for gifts like colouring, craft or jewellery sets, board games, books, clothes, action figures, dolls, gadgets, puzzles etc. Please don’t donate anything too heavy or bulky, since most families travel by public transport.

WARM CLOTHES FOR THE HOMELESS Warm clothes for the homeless & vulnerable, supported by organisations such as the Simon Community & the Lodging House Mission, is again a key Local Outreach appeal at Houston & Killellan Kirk. We are seeking donations of, essentially in the current COVID climate, NEW CLOTHES: • warm underwear

• t-shirts

• warm nightwear

• waterproof jackets & trousers

• joggers

• jumpers

• woolly hats

• scarves

• gloves

• socks

to keep these vulnerable men & women as warm & dry as ourselves during the winter. The Kirk’s Mission Team are confident that those in the congregation & in the wider community will respond generously, as they have done so in previous years, by bringing their donations to the Small West Hall, Main Street, Houston on the following Tuesdays: 2nd or 9th or 16th November. The donations will be accepted, with no social contact, between 10am & 12noon & between 7pm & 8pm. At the same time as Foodbank donations continue to be received. (Alternatively, to arrange collection, contact

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What’s on


NOV ‘21



Monday to Friday Gryffe Manor Out of School 01505 615438. Dance West Scotland Coffee Shop: - Mon/Sat 10am - 3pm Takeaways only. Check FB Café at the Carrick for updates in line with C19 Gov Guidelines. Coffee Shop/Centre 01505 229597.

Booking enquiries: Bill Haddow 01505 690693, Stewart Scally 01505 674277 Joe O’Brien 07968 804776 Email: or



Rhythm Time 9.30am Sewing Group 10am R4 DWS 4pm Diaporama 8th at 7.30pm Handy Wives 15th at 7.30pm Houston Show (Ladies) 8th at 7.30pm

Gryffe Quilting Group 11th/25th at 1pm - 3pm 4th/18th at 10am - 3pm Crafty Friends 4th/18th at 7.30pm Folk Club 8pm Move It Or Lose It 10am Councillor Surgery 18th at 6.30pm Audrey Doig Little Petals Massage 10am

TUESDAY Paint Pot Tots 10am Dawn Campbell 07789 262350 Yoga

7pm M/s Lawson 01505 613690




9th at 7pm Andrew Leggate


10.30am M/s Lawson 01505 613690


1.30am 5.30 pm

Rhythm Time 9.45am Clair Dolan 07458 396550

M.P. Surgery

12th at 12.30pm Gavin Newlands

Cricketfield Residents 16th at 7.30pm

MSP Surgery

5th at 12.30pm Natalie Don

WEDNESDAY Community Council 17th at 7.30pm DWS 15.30pm MOO MUSIC 9.30am Camera Club 8pm Womans Institute 10th at 19.30pm

Weekly Centre Patrons PLEASE ADVISE date or time changes due to Holidays to Centre Management


9.30 am

Councillor Surgery 1st at 11.30am – 12noon Jim Sheridan Deborah Campbell Textile Artist 6th at 9.30am


Baptist Church

11am & 6pm

Deborah Campbell Textile Artist 7th at 9.30am

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November 2021

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Expert Gutter Cleaning


Advertising Feature

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local community, local business, local life .........

Kilbarchan Singers The Kilbarchan Singers are delighted that we are now able to rehearse in person once more on Monday evenings. Having only been able to rehearse via Zoom for a year or so it is wonderful to be able to meet up and sing together again. Should anyone feel they would like to pursue joining the choir please email Myra Grant, our Secretary at We would be delighted to hear from you.

Kilbarchan NWR November is a busy month for our group with 6 zoom meetings which include the annual national Telephone Quiz ,a speaker on Foetal Alcohol Syndrome Disorder and a speaker from the NatWest bank talking about how to be aware of the many scams which seem to be increasing nowadays. We also have our own topics to discuss. If you’d like to learn more about our group please telephone 348627 or visit the website:

Early Bird Christmas Craft and Gift Fayre Kilbarchan Guide Centre, Barn Green, Kilbarchan We are back … 20 stalls filled with gorgeous gifts and crafts for all the family. We welcome some of our favourites including Nicole McCarron’s silver jewellery, Threepwood fayre, All things nice and Bumble Buttonz to name a few. Come along to browse our stalls and get Christmas shopping started. Entry: Choice between £2 OR donation for Renfrewshire food bank (non-perishable groceries dried/ tinned goods, toiletries, baby items, pet food). Put the date in your diary we would love to see you there. https://www.


ward 9 Cllr Andy Doig I am pleased to report that at the last full meeting of Renfrewshire Council I moved a motion to get the pesticide, Glyphosate, banned for use across Renfrewshire where it has been used by the Council for decades in parks and other public area. In 2015 the World Health Organisation said that Glyphosate was “Probably carcinogenic”, and it was widely used by local authorities. My motion was thankfully approved and I am indebted to constituents from Kilbarchan who lobbied me on the matter and brought this issue to my attention. Renfrewshire Council is now the 31st Council in the UK to ban Glyphosate but it will be on a phased basis so the Council can put in place other, safer, alternatives. I am delighted that my anti-speeding initiative which I persuaded the Council to adopt is speeding ahead, if I can say that. The Rural Safe Walking Initiative is a pilot in three villages, two of which are Howwood and Kilbarchan, and by the beginning of 2022 a report will be provided so that community consultation can begin with communities in Howwood, Kilbarchan, and Houston. This initiative has ‘to consult with Elected Members, Police, Community Councils and other local resident groups to understand the nature, severity and location of the issues’, before and after the installation of the traffic calming measures. I am very excited about this as this will be a solution made in the Villages for the Villages, not the usual situation where Paisley-based Council Officers dictate to the Villages what they will get. The final motion which I got passed at the last full council was to call on the Scottish Government to devolve the power to local authorities to introduce 20mph zones in residential, village, and town centre areas where they see fit. Currently this has to go through the Traffic Commissioner and many constituents from Lochwinnoch and the surrounding villages have lobbied me to say they feel that 20mph is essential for public safety and not just desirable. This is not the end of my campaign but only the beginning as 20mph zones have to be statutory to be effective and I hope Holyrood listens to the united voice of Renfrewshire Council. Contact Details for Cllr Andy Doig – My constituents can see me at my advice surgeries on the second Wednesday of the month at 6.30pm, Lilybank Bowling Club, Johnstone, and 7.30pm the Old Library, Kilbarchan. On the fourth Wednesday of the month they are at 6.30pm, Howwood Bowling Club, and then at 7.30pm in Lochwinnoch Bowling Club, all excluding July and December. Constituents can also email me on uk, call me on 07534 148224, facebook me on Independent Voice/ Ward9JohnstoneAndVillages, or tweet me on CllrAndy4Ward8, if you have a civic matter you wish to raise with me.

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Kilbarchan Old Library Centre

Kilbarchan Parish Church

Classes currently running are:

Services continue on Sundays at 11am conducted by Rev. Stephen Smith. For up-to-date details of the guidelines and church news, please visit our website: where you will also find details of the Remembrance Service.

Yoga - Wednesday 10am and 7.30pm. Both of these classes will be taken by Elizabeth Hughes. Yoga - Monday 7.30pm - 8.30pm. Friday 10am -11am. Classes taken by Kerry Yoga. Move It or Lose It - with Fiona Bretherton Thursday at 2pm Craft group - meets every 2nd Tuesday at 2pm. Book Group meets monthly on a Tuesday evening

The members are also filling shoeboxes for the Blythswood Shoebox Appeal which we have supported for more than 20 years.

Bridge class - Friday 2pm - 4pm “Tales if Land and Sea - from Smugglers Coast to handloom weaving village” in the Old Library Centre, Kilbarchan Join Anne Pitcher and Andy Shanks for an evening of stories and song. Andy will be sharing tales from Johnshaven, a small coastal village in the Northeast of Scotland along with specially written songs. Anne will be sharing some tales of Kilbarchan and original artwork depicting the place the stories come from. Starting at 7.30pm - tickets are available from The Old Library Centre and cost £6. Tel: 01505 706070 or 07708 059770 BYOB Kipco is a recognised Scottish Charity (no SC031251) and is run by volunteers. The Old Library Centre , 9 High Barholm, Kilbarchan. PA10 2EF Tel 01505 706070 email:

Lochwinnoch International Aid CLIMATE CHANGE CRISIS. The COP 26 Conference (Glasgow, November) will host people from all around the world. Some rich, some poor. The poorer countries are often the ones most damaged by Climate Change; their delegates need help with accommodation at a time when Glasgow prices are high and rising. That’s why the Human Hotel is helping to find free or cheap accommodation for visiting delegates. There is a ‘payback’! Opening your home (and your heart) to an international network of visiting activists, scientists, and policy makers is one of the most impactful ways you can contribute to the movement. It’s good that some Lochwinnoch people have already volunteered as hosts (more volunteers are needed). [] Donations from LIA. We have sent £200 to the EMFERD project in Tanzania, a charity we regularly support (as do Jenny and Zul Bhatia). It helps with schooling and support for disabled children in a country where official help is sadly, very limited. We also sent £200 to Sightsavers International – an organisation dedicated to fighting the several diseases which cause many thousands of people in the developing world to suffer blindness. Also, they fight for the rights of people who have been disabled by blindness. [] Who’d like a toilet for Christmas? Thousands of people around the world. In many rural areas a proper ‘latrine’ would bring great health

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At the recent Harvest Thanksgiving service a collection was held for Mary’s Meals when the amazing sum of over £1,700 was raised, which, when Gift Aid is added, will be over £2,000 for this excellent charity.

A Christmas Coffee Morning will be held in the halls on Saturday 27th November from 10am-12noon, entrance including mince pies and shortbread, is £3, children £1. There will be various stalls including home-baking, preserves and Aloe Vera. We shall be complying with all of the Church of Scotland guidelines, however it is good to be returning to some kind of normality after 20 months of no social events. Kilbarchan Parish Church Guild. There are 2 meetings in November on Tuesday afternoons at 2.30pm in the large hall - a talk about last year’s Guild project, the Boys’ Brigade, by Jackie Wilson on 9th and Gift Wrapping by Jan Carr on 23rd. All welcome-please bring your own cup for the moment.

benefits. That’s the purpose of ToiletTwinning ‘toilettwinning. org). They run a scheme where donors get to choose where to fund a ‘latrine’ and then receive a display certificate showing exactly where the latrine has been built. It’s only £60. Merry Christmas. The Junction, The Corner Bar and the McKillop have already got certificates as do a number of local people. If we get enough to join we could become a ‘toilettwinned’ village. If people would like to club together to fund one or more latrines, they can send a donation to LIA and we’ll put all the donations together. If you just want to make the occasional one-off donation to LIA use our JUSTGIVING link If you want to join LIA (£5/10 a month would make a big difference).– here’s how. We’re with the Coop bank. Name: Lochwinnoch International Aid Account no. 65425730 Sort Code 08-92-99 If you sign up, let us know and we’ll put you on our list. And you get to help choose where the next donations go!

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ward 1 - inverclyde Cllr Stephen McCabe The Council allocated £260,000 in grants to community groups last month. Among the local groups to benefit were Colourful Kilmacolm, Kilmacolm Horticultural Society and Birkmyre Rugby Club. There is growing concern in Kilmacolm about the potential closure of the village post office as the general store that hosts it is up for sale. This issue of course is not unique to Kilmacolm. Local post offices are closing across the country as they are often not financially viable without cross-subsidy from other business income. It would be a major blow to the village to lose its post office as it is well-used by local residents and businesses. I have asked the Council’s Chief Executive to arrange a meeting with the national Post Office to discuss the post office network in Inverclyde as there are other areas where the local post office has closed or is in danger of closing to see if there is anything that can be done arrest the decline. Following the recent theft from Glebe Court sheltered housing complex I contacted River Clyde Homes to ask them to review security at the complex to see if it can be improved. They have taken a number of actions in response. The annual fireworks display organised by the Council has been cancelled. The event was due to take place on Saturday 6th November at Battery Park in Greenock, but has been called off due to a lack of stewarding staff required to keep people safe and carry out Covid-19 vaccination checks for those attending. Most stewarding companies are under contract to support the COP26 climate conference in Glasgow, which runs from 31st October - 12th November, meaning there is a lack of available staff to work at other events.

Saturday 20th November from 10am - 3pm, Kilmacolm Community Centre. A perfect place to buy all your unique and handmade Christmas gifts by local artists, crafters and creatives. There will be a wide range of stalls including homeware and gifts from Tammie Norries, Orieano Candle Shop, Claire Cameron Cakes, Coco Stone clothing, painting from Helen McDonald, needle felting, silver jewellery, sustainable fabric crackers, knitting and baby clothes.

KEA, Kilmacolm Environment Action KEA, Kilmacolm Environment Action is gathering momentum. We had an excellent meeting in September - in person, and including a couple of young dynamic participants who want support in banning single use plastics in their school. Some of the group’s main interests were: protecting the greenbelt, rewilding our gardens, developing areas to encourage wildlife and pollinators and stopping the use of weedkillers in public green spaces. We also heard an inspiring presentation about the vision for a Community Eco Space which would be accessible to all and include plots for vegetable growing but also creative space for children and young people. NEW MEMBERS VERY WELCOME - CONTACT Sue/Lottie at: ecokilmacolm@

Birkmyre Park has been allocated £80,000 from the Council’s Covid Recovery Fund for improvements. I have asked Council Officers to consult the Community Council on their proposals for utilising this funding. Funding has also been allocated to renew the surface of the multi-use games area in the park and Council Officers are considering the best time to carry out this work given the approach of winter. It may be that the work is delayed until spring next year. With the Council elections due next year I am keen to hear from constituents on what they think the Council’s priorities should be for the next five year term. Details of how to contact me are given below. I have an advice surgery in Boglestone Community Centre on Tuesday 23rd November from 6.30pm -7.30pm. In the meantime you can contact me directly to discuss any matters that are of concern to you by telephone on 01475 712020 (during office hours) or by email to Alternatively you can write to me at 10 Victoria Gardens, Kilmacolm PA13 4HL.

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Duchal Nursery

November 2021


Advertising Feature

A forward thinking nursery providing first class early years care, Duchal Nursery School, based in Birkmyre Park Kilmacolm, is now open from 8am – 6pm daily during term time and offers free places to 3 – 5 year olds. Established over 50 years ago this independent nursery specialises in early years with the children progressing to a variety of primary schools in Inverclyde, Renfrewshire and Glasgow. With 3 separate rooms, and a fabulous garden and outdoor learning area, this purpose built nursery offers a warm, caring, secure and stimulating environment, where children grow in confidence and flourish. If you are looking for a pre school nursery place, please get in touch for more information and to arrange a visit by emailing:

december Deadline: Wednesday 10TH november contact: 12-27 NEWS 319 NOVEMBER 21.indd 23

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Cllr David Wilson It will be strange this year not participating in the Kilmacolm Bonfire and Fireworks. Many villagers have grown up with this event and let us hope an alternative site can be found for next year. As Depute Provost I will be laying the Council wreath at Port Glasgow this year. The Church service of Remembrance on the 14th is followed at 12.15pm by a parade through the town terminating at the War Memorial. There are bands from the Port Glasgow Boys Brigade and the St Columba’s School Pipe Band. Veterans, town clubs and societies, youth organisations and the Army Cadets make up a considerable parade. As in previous years we will observe the 2 minute silence on the 11th with a short act of remembrance at the Memorial Board in the Cargill Centre. A Clyde River Foundation water Bailiff has confirmed that a Smolt (a young Atlantic Salmon) has been found in the upper Gottar Water above Quarriers Village. This means that the recent salmon ladder at the weir in the village is doing its job and facilitating the movement of mature fish to the spawning grounds. Many were involved in this exercise, but the Bridge of Weir Angling Club members deserve special mention for their enthusiastic support and initiation of this significant environmental project. The young fish will soon begin their migration to faraway parts of the Atlantic. The application for a 20 metre 5G Telecommunications pole at Craigbet Road in Quarriers has caused displeasure in some quarters. As Chair of the Planning Board I cannot comment as the determination may end up in front of the Board. Inverclyde has 3 existing Glasgow City Region City Deal projects ,the £19.2m Greenock Ocean Terminal, Inchgreen and Inverkip Power Station. Scottish Office Minister Iain Stuart spoke to me recently regarding direct investment in Councils from Westminster. I endorsed this as an excellent idea with funds now not forthcoming from the EU and council budget cuts in recent years. In my SPT and Glasgow Airport roles I am involved in COP26, when the World will come to Glasgow. Transport is a major user of hydrocarbons and there are many schemes to reduce the dependence. First Bus will run the 15 minute shuttle buses around Glasgow, all electric. Similarly McGills Buses have purchased 65 electric single decker buses which we are hoping will be on Inverclyde routes. Bus patronage is slowly returning to pre pandemic levels but is still well behind. Recent surveys by Transport Focus found that 80% of travellers felt that bus travel was safe. We continue the development of Cornalees and Lunderston Bay as significant leisure and tourist attractions. We will engage and work together with the newly formed Friends of Clyde Muirshiel Regional Park. Our excellent community Policeman Constable Jamieson apprehended a shoplifter in the CO-OP who hid three bottles of spirits on his person while standing beside him. Collar felt. I can be contacted at: 01475 741969 and 712975 and 07766 992294. My surgery is 27th 10am - 11am in the Cargill.

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Kilmacolm Scarecrow Trail The Kilmacolm Community Council are supporting a great Halloween family event which is taking place in Kilmacolm over the Halloween Weekend (there will be a map available). Wander around the village on Saturday 30th and Sunday 31st October and see how many you can spot! The Scarecrow Festival builds on last years event this year expecting more than 50 scarecrows! Find out more at events/417831459732587

Kilmacolm CO-OP Inverclyde Food Bank Donation Bin - CHRISTMAS APPEAL Our Christmas meal plans are well underway here at Inverclyde Food Bank and we’re hoping that you can help us stock-up on the following essential ingredients: •

Tinned Meat: Steak Pie, Ham, Corned Beef, Mince, Chicken

Tinned Potatoes and Tinned Vegetables

Tinned Fruit, Tinned Custard, Tinned Creamed Rice Pudding

Fizzy Drinks (non-alcoholic), Crisps, Chocolate Biscuits & Sweeties

Toiletries: let’s look and feel good on Christmas Day

Toothpaste and Toothbrushes, Shampoo and Conditioner, Body Wash, Soap, Men’s and Ladies Shave Gel and Razors, Deodorant

Child and Baby Toiletries

Inverclyde Food Bank accepts all tinned, jars and packets of food Inverclyde Food Bank CAN’T accept fresh food Food can be purchased in the Kilmacolm CO-OP or bought elsewhere and brought to the Kilmacolm CO-OP Donation Bin. A couple of items from the above Christmas List will help us prepare for an exceptionally busy festive season at the Food Bank this year. Thank you for your kindness... Jenny x

Ladies Fellowship Meetings Invitation to Grace Church Kilmacolm Ladies Fellowship November meetings, alternate Tuesdays at 2.15pm – 3.30pm in the Guide Hut, Woodrow Avenue, Kilmacolm, PA13 4QF Tuesday 2nd November; Speaker: Linda Fox (Boldly Go) Tuesday 16th November; Speaker: Sheena MacFarlane Tuesday 30th November; Speaker: Marion Cunningham (Tearfund) All ladies welcome

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coming events

EVENT INFORMATION: Due to Covid restrictions, we STRONGLY ADVISE that you check with the venue/organiser for updates on these events. Where we can, we will update our listings to notify of cancelled, postponed and rescheduled events.

SATURDAY 30TH - SUNDAY 31ST Kilmacolm Scarecrow Trail



Kilmacolm village general

MONDAY 25 - FRIDAY 29 Halloween Scavenger Hunt TH


RSPB, Largs Road, Lochwinnoch The cost for this activity is £3.50 with normal trail fees applying for nonRSPB members, and also includes an activity bag with pencil, activity booklet, certificate, wild challenge nature activity sheet and pin badge.

THU 28TH MON 1ST NOVEMBER Paisley Halloween Festival Paisley - various venues The festival’s 2021 edition will take on a very different format this year with a series of spectacular installations that are ‘Out of This World’ popping up across Paisley town centre over five-days. Part of the celebrations for Scotland’s Year of Coasts and Waters 20/21. Find out more at halloween/

SATURDAY 30TH Paisley Farmers Market The Cenotaph, Paisley PA1 1BG 10am to 2pm A huge variety of produce for sale. A leisurely walk round the market provides many opportunities to taste produce and discuss the characteristics and uniqueness of each offering.

SATURDAY 30TH - SUNDAY 31ST Halloween Pumpkin Hunt RSPB, Largs Road, Lochwinnoch The cost for this activity is £3.50 with normal trail fees applying for nonRSPB members, and also includes an activity bag with pencil, activity booklet, certificate, wild challenge nature activity sheet and pin badge.

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The Kilmacolm Community Council are supporting a great Halloween family event which is taking place in Kilmacolm over the Halloween Weekend (there will be a map available). The Scarecrow Festival builds on last years event this year expecting more than 50 scarecrows! events/417831459732587

SUNDAY 31ST Renfrewshire leisure Monster Dash - Halloween Fun Run On-X Sports Centre, Brediland Road, Linwood 12noon Everyone taking part will receive a goody bag, with spot prizes for the bestdressed runners in Halloween costumes. The route will take fun runners on two laps of the scenic Linwood Moss and is a flat course with only a few gentle undulations. Entrance fee is only £3 for adults and £2 for children. Go to www. to register for the event.

Erskine Riverside Market Erskine Riverside Market Kilpatrick Drive, Erskine PA8 7AF 10am to 4pm Erskine Riverside Market will run on the last Sunday of each month with a blend of Fresh produce, Unique gifts, Hand made items & Street food. The ideal family day out on your door step.

MONDAY 1ST - TUESDAY 30TH Teddy Bear Scavenger Hunt RSPB, Largs Road, Lochwinnoch 10am to 4pm The cost for this event will be (£3 normal trail fees apply for non – members £3 adult £1.50 child under 5 free this event will include an activity bag). Please ask at the welcome desk.

TUESDAY 2ND Ladies Fellowship Meetings Grace Church, Guide Hut, Kilmacolm 2.15pm to 3.30pm Ladies Fellowship meetings, alternate Tuesdays. Speaker: Linda Fox (Boldly Go)

Bridge of Weir Festival Santa Sleigh Hope Hall, Maxwell Place, Bridge of Weir PA11 3NT 7pm We would welcome all who are interested in the Sleigh’s outings to come along to the meeting. Also, all who would like to help on committee for other activities such as Gala Day to come along.

Donations of Warm Clothes for the Homeless West Halls, Main Street, Houston PA6 7EL (next to Carrick Centre & Village Hall)

CLOCKS CHANGE 31st October ‘21 Turns your clocks back 1 hour at 2am on the last Sunday in October.

10am to 12noon, 7pm to 8pm We are seeking donations of, essentially in the current COVID climate, NEW CLOTHES please. Other dates for donations are on Tuesday 9th & 16th.

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SATURDAY 6TH Kilmacolm Farmers Market Kilmacolm Community Centre, Lochwinnoch Road, Kilmacolm 10am to 2pm A great selection of local Scottish produce! Customer entry restricted for everyone’s safety. Please wear face masks or scarves if you can. Hand sanitizer at the entrance for you to use. Looking forward to seeing everyone! FREE ENTRY

THURSDAY 11TH Animation Workshop with Russell MacEwan artspace33, Paisley 11am to 3pm How To Think When You Draw Comics is a fun introduction to comic art, no previous experience necessary; you can even borrow pencil and paper. The workshops will provide exciting and cool techniques to kickstart your own comic ideas, at whatever level you’re working at. Lots of practical ideas to get you started in character design and everything else we can fit in. Free entry, booking required. Visit steven-thomson-creative-producer16475076871 for details.

FRIDAY 12TH - SATURDAY 13TH BGCP Comic and Toy Market Tour: Greenock

SATURDAY 13TH Paisley Farmers Market The Cenotaph, Paisley PA1 1BG 10am to 2pm A huge variety of produce for sale. A leisurely walk round the market provides many opportunities to taste produce and discuss the characteristics and uniqueness of each offering.

SUNDAY 14TH Renfrew Market Robertson Park, Longcroft Drive, Renfrew PA4 8LY 10am to 4pm Held on the 2nd Sunday of each month, showcasing fresh produce, artisan crafts, unique gifts and street food from local businesses! Come down and support small and local businesses! Upcoming dates: 12th December 2021

Winter Wetland and Waterfowl Walk RSPB, Largs Road, Lochwinnoch 11am to 1.30pm 2 guided walks with a free lunch, walks led by our warden. To book or find out more information please visit https://

TUESDAY 16 Ladies Fellowship Meetings TH

Oak Mall Shopping Centre, Greenock 10am to 5pm

Grace Church, Guide Hut, Kilmacolm 2.15pm to 3.30pm

With traders selling everything from Comics, Art, Action Figures, Art, T-Shirts and much more. Free entry, no tickets. Please keep social distance, wear a mask and use hand sanitizer when needed. Find out more at https://www.facebook. com/BGCPComicCon/

Ladies Fellowship meetings, alternate Tuesdays. Speaker: Sheena MacFarlane

SATURDAY 13TH The Firewalk St Vincent’s Hospice, Midton Road, Howwood 7pm to 9pm Join us for our Hottest Fundraising event EVER!! For more information and details on how to register please. Email info@ or Tel: 01505 705635 Ext 303 Registration: £10, includes a free T-shirt

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WEDNESDAY 17TH Kilmacolm Horticultural Society Winter Lecture Kilmacolm Community Centre, Lochwinnoch Road 7pm We are very pleased to be welcoming Nancy Stevens from Baldernock Gardening Club. Nancy’s intriguing subject will be SHRUBS ARE BORING ARE YOU SURE ?? Tea/coffee available prior to the start of the lecture. Face masks should be worn within the building until you are seated. Further details for the KHS are on the website.

SATURDAY 20TH Bishopton & Dargavel Farmers Market Bishopton Train Station Car Park, off Birch Road 10am to 2pm Full compliment of stalls plus Fish from Oban, Taste of Espana, Three Sisters Bake, and All things Nice for home made chutneys and preserves. Held on the 3rd Saturday every month.

Crafty Kilmacolm Christmas Market Kilmacolm Community Centre, Lochwinnoch Rd 10am to 3pm A perfect place to buy all your unique and handmade Christmas gifts by local artists, crafters and creatives. With a wide range of stalls including homeware and gifts from Tammie Norries, Orieano Candle Shop, Claire Cameron Cakes, Coco Stone clothing, painting from Helen McDonald, needle felting, silver jewellery, sustainable fabric crackers, knitting and baby clothes.

SUNDAY 21 Early Bird Christmas Craft and Gift Fayre ST

Kilbarchan Guide Centre, Barn Green, Kilbarchan 1pm to 4pm 20 stalls filled with gorgeous gifts and crafts for all the family - get Christmas shopping started. We welcome some of our favourites including Nicole McCarron’s silver jewellery, Threepwood fayre, All things nice and Bumble Buttonz to name a few. Entry: Choice between £2 OR donation for Renfrewshire food bank. We’d love to see you there. https:// posts/4728510597161721

TUESDAY 23 Donations of Christmas Gifts for Children of Prisoners RD

West Halls, Main Street, Houston PA6 7EL (next to Carrick Centre and Village Hall)

10am to 12noon, 7pm to 8pm Please give generously and support us again this Christmas. Please donate NEW unwrapped gifts in open gift bags, with an indication of age, and boy or girl.


THURSDAY 25TH Johnstone High Christmas Gift and Craft Fayre Johnstone High School, Beith Road, Johnstone PA5 0JN 6pm to 8pm Jump right into the Christmas spirit at our annual Christmas Gift and Craft fayre. Plenty to choose from with over 20 stalls, gifts for all the family. We welcome back, Nicole McCarron’s Silver Jewellery, Kilbarchan soaps, and many more ... lots of new crafters to buy from. Get lucky on the raffle and tombola and stop for a coffee and cake. Entry £2/ Under 12 go free (inc tea/coffee)

FRIDAY 26TH Houston and Killellan Agricultural Society Annual Quiz Night Fleming Road, Houston Tickets are £5 to include a light supper. For more information please contact Isabelle Stuart on 07508 905298 or email:

THU 25TH FRI 26TH SAT 27TH KDS Aladdin Kilmacolm Kidston Hall Things are hotting up in Widow Twankey’s laundry and this year, in order to comply with social distancing, you will be able to book your seats online with TicketSource. Booking will be opening soon and details on how to book will be on Kilmacolm Dramatic Society’s website and facebook page. In the meantime if you have any queries please contact Rosie Thirde on 01505 873088 or Mandy Robinson on 07719 309960.

SATURDAY 27TH Brighter Bridge Of Weir PopUp Shop Livery Walk, Bridge of Weir The first fund-raising Pop-Up Shop since 2019 - the group’s now traditional rustic reindeer will be among the items available to buy. Check out the group’s Facebook page for a pre-order option also.

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Panto season is back! oh yes it is

A “Not So” Silent Night KDS Aladdin


Wizard of Oz Panto

Old Johnstone Baptist Church, Walkinshaw St,Johnstone PA5 8QL.

Get your tickets for the biggest ball in town this Christmas at the Beacon! Taking place from Friday 10th to Friday 31st December.

Friday 10th & Saturday 11th December, at Renfrew North Church PA4 8RG. Performances, Friday at 7pm, Saturday at 2pm & 7pm. Tickets £9 adults, £7 children under 16 & concession.

Johnstone Phoenix Theatre Group (amateur) are delighted to be able to present A “Not So” Silent Night, on Friday 3rd and Saturday 4th December 2021. Doors open at 7pm with curtains up 7.30pm. Tickets cost £10 and can be booked on the booking hotline 07748 827 727 (Tuesday - Friday 6pm - 9pm) or email:

PACE announcement

Things are hotting up in Widow Twankey’s laundry as the cast of Aladdin are fully immersed in rehearsing for their performances on 25th, 26th and 27th November. This year, in order to comply with social distancing, you will be able to book your seats online with TicketSource. Booking will be opening soon and details on how to book will be on Kilmacolm Dramatic Society’s website and facebook page. In the meantime if you have any queries please contact Rosie Thirde on 01505 873088 or Mandy Robinson on 07719 309960.

The Baroness Demonica and the Wicked Stepsisters Senga and Sadie treat poor Cinderella appallingly but perhaps with the help of her best friend Buttons and the Fairy Godmother she will find that dreams can come true... Book now for the show that proves that a pair of shoes really can change your life! https://www.beaconartscentre.

We reluctantly confirm that there will be no PACE Theatre Company panto for Christmas 2021, and neither do we have plans at this time for an online panto alternative. Last year’s “Lost in Pantoland” was made possible with support from an emergency arts relief fund and without this additional funding the model is not sustainable. This is not a decision we have taken lightly, and we understand that many people will be disappointed. Our annual pantomime is a highlight of the year for many people, as it is for us, but we’re looking forward to being able to come back bigger and better next year. As a registered charity, we are hugely dependent on ticket sales to subsidise the work we do with young people throughout the year. Over 95% of our income comes from ticket sales and fees, meaning that we have been especially hard hit during the pandemic, and the loss of panto from our schedule for a second year running will leave a massive hole in our funds.

The story’s familiar - a tornado blows Dorothy Gale and her home to the Land of Oz, where she encounters a scarecrow who longs for a brain, a tin man who really wants a heart, and a cowardly lion who’s desperate to become brave and courageous. The elusive Wonderful Wizard of Oz is the key to all their hopes and dreams, Dorothy’s being to return to her home in Kansas. This Pantomime has been written by James Barry & by Special Arrangement with Lazy Bee Scripts. https://www.jazzhandsglasgow.


If you are a regular audience member, please consider making a donation here: donate/. Or to donate £10, text PACE to 70191.

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Which?© campaign for online protection Have you filled in quizzes on social media which ask you questions like your first pet’s name, favourite colour, eldest child’s name etc? Did you realise that answering these could put you at risk of identity theft? Which?© magazine has launched a petition to make tech giants take more responsibility to protect consumers. They argue that tech companies aren’t doing enough to protect us online from scams, dangerous products and fake reviews, and are demanding strong new laws be introduced by the government to make tech giants protect you online. Almost 1 in 10 people fall victim to scam ads on social media or a search engine, and fake customer reviews hoodwink consumers into buying billions of pounds worth of poor qualtiy and unsafe products online. If you would like to add your name to the petition, please visit the website at Which?© has also launched a Scam Alert Service. You can add your email on their webpage to receive regular updates on the latest scams doing the rounds – and practical advice to keep you one step ahead of the scammers. Your friends and family can sign up too. Sign up at

SATURDAY 27TH Paisley Farmers Market The Cenotaph, Paisley PA1 1BG 10am to 2pm A huge variety of produce for sale. A leisurely walk round the market provides many opportunities to taste produce and discuss the characteristics and uniqueness of each offering.

Christmas Coffee Morning Kilbarchan Parish Church Hall, Steeple Street 10am to 12noon With various stalls including homebaking, preserves and Aloe Vera. We shall be complying with all of the Church of Scotland guidelines, however it is good to be returning to some kind of normality after 20 months of no social events. Entrance including mince pies and shortbread, is £3, children £1.

SATURDAY 27TH - SUNDAY 28TH Helensburgh Winter Festival 2021 Colquhoun Square, Helensburgh 10am to 5pm Over 70 stalls with 12 hot food units, over 50 craft stalls and at least 12 market stalls. Kiddies fairground rides, a twister ride and trampoline. Festival Stage where music and dance acts will perform over the two days, featuring many local acts. Sunday is our Classic Car Show, & there will also be a vintage fire engine!

SUNDAY 28TH Erskine Riverside Market Erskine Riverside Market Kilpatrick Drive, Erskine PA8 7AF 10am to 4pm Last Sunday of each month with a blend of Fresh produce, Unique gifts, Hand made items & Street food. The ideal family day out on your door step.

TUESDAY 30TH Ladies Fellowship Meetings Grace Church, Guide Hut, Kilmacolm 2.15pm to 3.30pm Ladies Fellowship meetings, alternate Tuesdays. Marion Cunningham (Tearfund)

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TUESDAY 30TH Donations of Christmas Gifts for Children of Prisoners West Halls, Main Street, Houston PA6 7EL (next to Carrick Centre & Village Hall)

10am to 12noon, 7pm to 8pm Please give generously and support us again this Christmas. Please donate NEW unwrapped gifts in open gift bags, with an indication of age, and boy or girl.

December FRIDAY 3RD - SATURDAY 4TH A “Not So” Silent Night Johnstone Baptist Church, Walkinshaw Street, Johnstone PA5 8QL 7pm Johnstone Phoenix Theatre Group (amateur) presents A “Not So” Silent Night. Doors open 7pm. Curtains up 7.30pm. Book tickets now on: booking hotline 07748 827727 (Tuesday - Friday 6pm - 9pm) or email: johnstonephoenix@ Tickets cost £10.

SATURDAY 4TH Kilmacolm Farmers Market Kilmacolm Community Centre, Lochwinnoch Road, Kilmacolm 10am to 2pm Kilmacolm Farmers Market is held on the first Saturday each month featuring a great selection of local Scottish produce! Customer entry restricted for everyone’s safety. Please wear face masks or scarves if you can. Hand sanitizer at the entrance for you to use. We are encouraging all of the stall holders to take card payments where possible. Looking forward to seeing everyone! FREE ENTRY.

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Bridge of Weir Festival - Santa Sleigh As the relaxation of restrictions progresses The Bridge of Weir Festival Committee will be becoming more active again,but with some significant changes. After many years of service Brenda Lethorn (Treasurer), Meg Gilzean (Secretary) and Margaret Dymond will all be standing down. Anne and Paul Matthews will also be leaving the committee. A huge thank you to ALL for the service and hard work committed. This still leaves a strong committee, but more people are needed to carry on the good work. I suspect that Covid, and the hiatus in activities it has created, will leave us sadly wounded in many ways and possibly for quite a while. We may not be out of the wood yet at all, but we need to go forward as carefully as we can. Christmas is hurtling towards us and Santa is already preparing his Sleigh for the tour of Houston, Kilmacolm, and Bridge of Weir. He will start his runs on Friday 3rd December and hope to finish, weather permitting, on 18th Dec. More details of this will follow. The next meeting of the Festival Committee will be on Tuesday 2nd November, 7pm, at Hope Hall. We would welcome all who are interested in the Sleigh’s outings to come along to the meeting. Also, all who would like to help on committee for other activities such as Gala Day to come along.

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to be here someday : Book release A new book about Scottish band Deacon Blue has been written by a Kilmacolm-raised writer. Journalist Paul English, who grew up in the village and attended Kilmacolm Primary and St Stephen’s in Port Glasgow in the 80s & 90s, collaborated with the multi-million selling act on their first authorised book. Entitled To Be Here Someday, after the lyric from their best-known song Dignity, the book is a chronological history of the band, originally formed in Glasgow in 1986. Paul, a freelance newspaper journalist and broadcaster, conducted extensive interviews with band members past and present, charting their early days, their rise to become an arena act in the 1990s, their split and eventual reformation. The book also contains entries from hundreds of fans, including well-known names like Hollywood actor Alan Cumming, American chat show host Craig Ferguson and First Minister Nicola Sturgeon. Paul said: “It was a really big deal to be given the opportunity, because Deacon Blue are one of the bands whose music has stayed with me since I was a teenager. They’ve a really loyal fan base, and some of the stories the fans shared about what their music has meant to them are quite moving.” Deacon Blue, fronted by lead singer Ricky Ross and wife Lorraine McIntosh, have sold seven million albums worldwide in a 30 year career, with hits including Real Gone Kid, Fergus Sings The Blues and Chocolate Girl. Their drummer, TV presenter Dougie Vipond, comes from Inchinnan. Paul said: “It was fascinating to have access to the band’s own collection of photos and other archive bits and bobs from down through the years. They were really generous with their time, and quite frank with their stories, too.” The book, published by This Day In Music, is being released next month in standard issue hardback, with a special limited edition box set featuring a new 7” single with two unreleased versions of Dignity also available to fans. Paul said: “Hopefully fans of the band will learn a few things they didn’t know, as well as just how much this band’s music means to people.” To Be Here Someday is available for pre-order from images: © Carlo Paloni / BAFTA Scotland


Port Glasgow High School Councillor David Wilson reports, “The new head at Port Glasgow High School has settled in. We wish her predecessor Stuart Clark well in East Renfrewshire. “The school continues to impress with 5 pupils attaining 5 A’s in the highers and 24% achieving 5+. Advanced higher Chemistry and Biology and higher Sociology are now available in the curriculum. “My schools are slowly opening up and I certainly have missed prizegivings, musical extravaganzas and parent councils. 5 minute telephone call, parents nights are the best that can be done under the circumstances, but it does give the teacher an opportunity to update parents on their children’s progress. Needs must.”

Helensburgh Winter Festival 2021 This year the Winter Festival is back and will be held in Helensburgh on Saturday 27th & Sunday 28th November from 10am - 5pm! Over 70 stalls with 12 hot food units, over 50 craft stalls and at least 12 market stalls. The School’s Penguin Competition has already been launched, which follows last year’s very successful virtual competition. This year we have a number of kiddies fairground rides, a twister ride as well as the ever-popular bungee trampoline. In the centre of Colquhoun Square will be our Festival Stage where music and dance acts will perform over the two days, featuring many local acts. Returning this year on Sunday is our Classic Car Show, & there will also be a vintage fire engine! We are planning for Frozen characters & penguins to be out and about in the Square giving photo opportunities for families. There will be a Tombola stall with some fantastic prizes to win all donated by local businesses. Grey Matters are holding a knitted Penguin Hunt Competition supported by local businesses. The Rotary Club of Helensburgh & Lomondside is hosting Santa’s Grotto on Saturday and The Round Table Santa Dash is back on Sunday. New for this year will be a Best Dressed Pet competition as well as a buskers corner. The Xmas light switch on is the week before, so the square will have a real Christmas feel and a great atmosphere! The Helensburgh Winter Festival is a registered charity and relies on the help of volunteers all year round. If you wish to help in some way or volunteer over the weekend, please send us a message!

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schools & Sports Bridge Of Weir Primary BRIDGE OF WEIR PRIMARY LOVES READING! When parents ask us what they can do to help their children during the school holidays, our advice is always simple: Get outside, play with friends, hug loved ones, ride a bike, spend time in nature, and READ FOR FUN! Throughout the holidays many pupils and staff took our advice; they enjoyed being read to, listening to audiobooks, reading independently, reading aloud, and trying ‘paired reading’ together. The feedback from children and adults was that they loved it. Every participant logged and rated their books in a special ‘Read for Fun’ booklet. We also celebrated our love of reading by presenting certificates and ‘reading related’ badges. It’s been a great partnership project. This month’s reading recommendation comes from Zara Christie-Cree in P7a. “I recommend ‘ Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone’ – I loved studying it in P4 with Ms McCann. It’s a really attention grabbing book with an exciting storyline”

Duchal Nursery Using some of the amazing Julia Donaldson books as inspiration the children have been immersed in some imaginative play and learning over the last few weeks. The Smartest Giant in Town and the Squash and the Squeeze were a great hit and provided a great deal of entertainment while also giving the opportunity to learn. With the arrival of Autumn the park has provided us with our craft resources for leaf painting and creative art displays, as usual we make the most of our magnificent surroundings and use the park and its surroundings for exploring, learning road safety, football and fitness. Having our own native speaking French teacher is wonderful and the children so enjoy the visits from Madame, as she makes learning a new language at a young age so much fun. We are currently taking registrations for August 2022, Duchal is an independent nursery with our children moving on to various local schools in Inverclyde, Renfrewshire and Glasgow. We are open daily from 8am until 6pm during term time and offer free funded hours. If you would like to find out more, please get in touch and we can arrange a visit the Nursery to meet the teachers and see our facilities. Email: Visit our website: www. and our Facebook page for further information.

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BRIDGE OF WEIR PRIMARY AND COP26 This term every class in our school has focused on the subject of climate change and the protection of our environment. We’ve been learning about the COP26 climate conference in Glasgow in November, when world leaders will gather to see if they can make changes to benefit the planet. One highlight was the One Planet Picnic held in P6/5. All food eaten at the picnic was locally sourced, including honey from Charlotte’s and Mr Lowit’s bees, fruit and bread from Barnhill Farm, and pumpkins from our very own allotments. Pupils feasted on pumpkin soup, which they made, and locally baked bread, followed by fruit salad and double cream. Daisy Hickman said, “It was yummy and it felt good to know all the food was sourced locally.”

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Houston Primary Harvest Food Appeal A massive thank you to all those who donated so generously to this year’s Harvest Food Appeal. The staff at the Renfrewshire Foodbank were delighted to receive such a huge delivery, which will help very many families in need at this time.

Nursery Demolition Demolition of our original nursery started this week. So many families attended here and I’m sure will have very many happy memories of the time they spent there, making friends and learning so many exciting things through play. The land will be used to extend our playground area, and pupils are currently being consulted on what things they would like. Watch this space!

Fundraising At this time of year when online spending is at a peak we would very much appreciate it if you can help us by collecting free donations each time you shop online. Click on the link to register causes/houstonpsc

Christmas Light Competition Congratulations to Isla from Primary 2, who is this year’s winner of the Christmas Light competition. Her design will take pride of place in the village display and for many years to come.

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Old Ranfurly Ladies Section A great Old Ranfurly ladies section summer golf season is now over. It was very well supported and all who participated greatly enjoyed it. Now October sees the start of a programme of 3 winter competitions. This includes winter greensomes where ladies choose their own partners and form a team of 2. They are then matched against other ladies in the group. All teams play each other in a round robin format. These games are keenly fought and eventually those with most points go through to next round. There’s also a 5 club competition where ladies choose only 5 clubs to play a round and are matched with one another. Making the best choice for you is vital to best outcome!! The winner goes through to next round. Finally there’s a well supported and enthusiastic winter swingers competition where all ladies play each other in a round robin format. In addition to these competitions there are monthly medal, stableford competitions and American greensomes. Good luck to all our participants!! Clearly ladies will be very busy through the winter season with plenty of golf to enjoy. Let’s hope the weather is kind and not too inclement!!! Happy winter golfing ladies!!!


Kilmacolm Golf Club Despite the outcome in this year’s Ryder Cup with the dominance of the Americans, members at Kilmacolm Golf Club thoroughly enjoyed a day of Ryder Cup competition at the club. With teams consisting of juniors, ladies and gents the 3 days of the Ryder Cup were condensed into 18 holes, with 6 holes of four ball match play, 6 holes of foursomes followed by 6 holes of singles match play. A great fun format of playing golf followed by an afternoon of watching the real thing on the big screen in the clubhouse. With the arrival of Autumn and the odd day of wet weather now is the time to make the most of our fabulous indoor golfing facilities, the 2 bay indoor studio is the perfect place for some fun social golf or an opportunity to improve your game through practice or make the most of our Professional staff and their winter coaching offers. As the ladies golf season draws to a close social golf will continue with our weekly Tuesday 10 hole competitions a fun informal chance to keep out on the course throughout the winter, as well as the winter matchplay knockouts. Also we are delighted that our weekly bridge afternoons will also re start on Tuesdays for the winter months.

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#YouDecide - submit your ideas now Renfrewshire Council wants you to have your say in how they spend their budget. The power of local knowledge can’t be underestimated. Of course, there are areas like education, health and social care, bin collections and housing investment that they need to allocate money for, but they want to give you the chance to use other areas of the budget to make the improvements you know are needed in your community. #YouDecide is how they will let you choose what projects will make the biggest difference to Renfrewshire. Double Olympic medallist Jack Carlin (pictured with Cllr Michelle Campbell) helped launch the scheme this month. Jack is a passionate advocate of safe cycling routes - and you can see that he has already submitted his idea!

Strathgryffe Club Championships 2021 Strathgryffe Tennis, Squash and Fitness Club held their annual tennis club championships recently. There was a total of 27 finals played catering for all age of player. Highlights were the men’s singles with Lee Wishart overcoming Liam O’Brien 6-4, 7-5 in a high-quality final. In the women’s final, the tennis was of a similarly high standard with Carla Ward defeating Sophie Dunlop 6-7, 6-3, 6-1. Strathgryffe is currently running a 1-week trial membership to allow people to try our tennis, squash and fitness facilities. For further details visit:

This time, £1.2million is available for your ideas - taken from the Environment and Infrastructure service’s budget (2020-2023) and available for you to spend on infrastructure projects across Renfrewshire. Renfrewshire Council wants all your ideas so think big! Is it new walking and cycle routes? Safer local roads? Outdoor gym equipment? Anything that will make where you live better! They’ll cover pot holes, road resurfacing and things like that in our own wider budget, so let them know what else needs improved. You can put forward your ideas in our #YouDecide survey - send in as many as you can think of! The team will assess each idea as it comes in and carry out a feasibility study to ensure that it would be possible. They’ll then compile a shortlist of all possible projects to put to a public vote. You’ll then cast your votes and pick the ones you think are most needed in your community. They’ll announce the winners and they carry out the work. So stay tuned to all their channels and make sure you have your say on how this money is spent. Find out more at YouDecide---submit-your-ideas-now DEADLINE FOR SUBMISSIONS: Sunday 14th November 2021

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Ranfurly Castle Golf Club As temperatures drop and the daylight shortens golf events are slowing down at the Castle. However, September was still pretty busy for the Ladies section. The winter Greensomes were played on 15th September and the winning partnership were Alison Templeton and Lilias Lamont with 37 points. On 22nd September there was a Fun Competition called an Australian Scramble. 10 teams of 3 played over 12 holes and, despite the difficult weather conditions, there were no call offs. The winning team consisted of Denise Cowan, Fiona Christie and Evelyn McDermid with Pamela MacKenzie, Vivine Howe and Anne Judge taking runners up slot. The Vets Trophy had been scheduled for earlier in the summer, but due to dreadful weather on the day, no one actually played. It was decided to re schedule and it was played for on 6th October with Eleanor Cannon winning the Silverware. The Greenlees Team have finished the year in the top position in Division Two. This means they will once again be playing in Division One next year. Many congratulations to all the Ladies who played in these matches. The Club held its Finals Day at the end of August and there were some close fought matches played in good conditions. The new Club Champion is Mac Menzies having defeated Alastair Frood. Seniors Champion is Hunter Paterson having defeated Paul Morrell and the Junior Champion is Gregor Rawson having beaten Iain Milne on the 18th green. Very many congratulations to all our Champions.

It was all square down the last and Gregor prevailed. It is little consolation, but Iain will learn much from this and his ball striking was impressive. I look forward to seeing how next year goes for Iain. Well done, again! Gregor now has 3 championships in a row and has done the double for the second year in succession as he won the Old Ranfurly junior championship again a few weeks before. A great achievement!!

Seniors Champion is Hunter Paterson

It is great to see the juniors from both clubs in the village playing with and against each other in good spirit and long may that continue. Also, well done Kenny & Elaine Rawson and Mairi and Derek Milne whose nerves must have been shattered watching their boys going through the experience!! Derek was an excellent caddy.

The 2021 Ranfurly Castle Golf Club Junior Championship final was a tense encounter between Iain Milne and Gregor Rawson. Iain played Club Champion is Mac Menzies some great golf on the way to the final and had the difficult task of challenging Gregor who was defending his title. Congratulations go to Gregor who successfully defended his Junior Championship crown in an excellent match. Both played well and both had their nervy moments but played the match in great spirit. Iain did well to get in front on the outward nine and will rue some shots on the back nine but equally Gregor will say the same about the front nine! It really was that close!

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Junior Convenor, David Provan and Junior Champion, Gregor Rawson

The Junior section at Ranfurly Castle has welcomed a number of new members in 2021 and if you are interested in joining for the 2022 season you should contact the Junior Convenor, David Provan at the Club by email to gm@ ranfurlycastlegolfclub. or come along to any of our events for an informal chat.

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New £200k park is pitch perfect SPORTS fans will be having a ball at a Greenock outdoor sports facility thanks to improvements worth nearly £200,000. A new 3G pitch has been installed at Lady Octavia Sports Centre following investment by Inverclyde Council. The surface meets quality standards set out by world football governing body FIFA and comes complete with a brand new set of 11-a-side goals. Councillor Jim Clocherty, depute leader of Inverclyde Council and convener of education and communities, said: “The investment in the pitch and sports centre here at Lady Octavia highlights our ongoing commitment to sport and leisure to provide first-class facilities right across Inverclyde. “We have incredible outdoor and indoor facilities, but it’s important to maintain high standards and that’s why we’re continuing to invest, along with our partners Inverclyde Leisure, in sites like Lady Octavia. Councillor Ronnie Ahlfeld, Inverclyde’s sports champion, said: “Continued investment in our leisure sites, including here at Lady Octavia, ensures residents all over Inverclyde have high-quality facilities that are easy to access and where they can enjoy exercising whether that’s with a game of football or other sports that can be played on 3G pitches all year round.” Robert McVitie, Inverclyde Leisure operations manager, said: “In partnership with Inverclyde Council, we are delighted to welcome another upgrade across our football estate. “This will be a welcomed addition at Lady Octavia to help serve the community of Inverclyde. The facilities are well used by local grass roots football team as well as the wider community for recreational football.” For booking enquiries for Lady Octavia and other outdoor pitches in Inverclyde, including school lets, phone 01475 213131 or email:

Regular Meet Classe Energise with Laura

Online and in person yoga classes @ Thrive, 7 Castle Terrace, Bridge of Weir Monday - beginner friendly DDP Yoga: 11am - 12noon Wednesday - mum & baby DDP Yoga: 10am - 11am Thursday - beginner friendly DDP Yoga: 7pm - 8pm 1-1 slots also available Contact: or visit: to book your sessions.

Zumba Light

Monday 10am in Freelands Church, Main Street, Bridge of Weir (Opposite Amaretto). Come along, have fun to fantastic music and feel FAB. All fitness levels welcome. For more information contact Mo 07505 126416.

Reebok Step Class

Tuesday 6.45pm Freelands Church, Main Street, Bridge of Weir (Opposite Amaretto). Miss the Original Reebok Step Class? Then come along for fun, fabulous music, full body workout, feel fantastic! Contact Mo 07505 126416 for more details and to book (limited spaces available).

Little Down Dogs Yoga

From left, Councillor Michael McCormick, Robert McVitie and Stewart Burns from Inverclyde Leisure, and Councillor Jim Clocherty at the new 3G pitch at Lady Octavia Sports Centre in Greenock.

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Howwood (Parish Church): Tues - After School Yoga - 3.30pm Thursday - Adults Yoga - 6.15pm or 7.30pm Houston: (Compass Centre) Monday - After School Yoga - 3.45pm (Strathgryffe Tennis Club) Tuesday - Adults Yoga - 9.30am Friday - Pre School Yoga - 1.30pm Kilmacolm (KNCC): Thursday - Yoga HIIT - 9.30am For more information please contact Jackie on 07977 139251

Move it or Lose it!

A warm welcome awaits you. Come and meet your friendly instructor and see what FABS can do for you. Easy to follow exercises which can be done seated or standing. Flexibility, Aerobic, Balance and Strength (FABS) exercises. With music to spark memories! Come and join the fun and make new friends. Classes in Gourock, Greenock, BoW, Kilmacolm, Houston and Kilbarchan. First class is free for new members, booking essential! If you would like to join the fun please contact: Fiona 07811 766672 or www.moveitorloseit. or moveitorloseitwithfiona on Facebook

Jennifer Sloan Physiotherapy Led Pilates

Kilmacolm Community Centre, Wednesdays at 6.15pm - 7.15pm & 7.30pm - 8.30pm For more information or to book a class call Jennifer 07731 303709 or email:

Clyde Physiotherapy Pilates classes

All classes held in St Machars church hall, Bridge of Weir. Monday 9.30am, 10.40am and 7pm. Booking essential. Zoom option also available. For more information or to book contact Yvonne on 07786 224367 or yvonne@

Many of the classes which usually feature in this section have been unable to resume for the time being. Check out previous Advertizers or our website for various class details and contact information.

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local community, local business, local life .........


out & about Picture:BoW Hillwalkers Corran Ferry

RSPB Lochwinnoch Nature Reserve in November

Bridge of Weir Hillwalkers

A heart felt welcome to RSPB Lochwinnoch in November, with colder days and early dark, there is still plenty to see at your local nature reserve. Our winter migrants are arriving with the first Whooper swans and Teal arriving the beginning of October. Our Wigeon, Goosander, Goldeneye, and Pochard will also be on their way, to settle on the Aird and Barr Lochs for the winter. Our visitor centre is now fully open for visitors, with our seating area now open, for you to enjoy a wee coffee, sandwich, or snack. Our shop is open with lots of Christmas stock available, so why now come and choose a unique gift for a loved one. Come and enjoy the beautiful outdoors, and relax as you wander our trails, you never know what amazing wildlife you might spot. In November we are running our winter wetland and waterfowl walk, on the 14th at 11am – 1.30pm. During this event there will be 2 guided walks and free lunch, the walks will be led by our warden. To book or find out more information please visit

The BoWHW have been active over the summer months with weekends away in Ardnamurchan and Corran Ferry and walks in Perthshire, on part of the West Highland Way, two trips down the Borders and numerous other outings and most in good weather.

We haven’t forgotten our younger explorers we have a teddy bear scavenger hunt running in November every day 10am - 4pm. The cost for this event will be {£3 normal trail fees apply for non – members £3 adult £1.50 child under 5 free this event will include an activity bag}. Please ask at the welcome desk.

Up and coming trips include the fairy hill near Aberfoyle, a trip to Abernethy for a walk and a clootie dumpling and our anniversary celebration weekend in Oban. December sees us back at the panto and a Christmas walk and lunch planned (by bus) to Arrochar.

Our opening times are 10am – 5pm 7 days a week.

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We are just back from Corran Ferry where the weather was a bit challenging at times but a good time was had by the 11 who attended.

Follow us on facebook and new faces are always welcome - contact: donwwsmith@

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Well, well what a difference! Kilbarchan Smile joined forces with village volunteers to clean up and tidy Wellstrand in Kilbarchan. This historic footpath and drinking well had become overgrown in recent years and Renfrewshire Council’s Spotless September was the perfect motivation for a village tidy up. Weeds were scraped from the pathway and the overgrown bank weeded and planted up with bulbs and violas. It is once again the pleasant walk beside the burn with its ‘Pooh Sticks’ bridge enjoyed by Habbies for generations. A massive thank you to all involved, especially Alex who powered his way through the work with the help of his trusty shovel and leaf blower, also the Co-op for helping us stay Covid safe with their kind donation. Other areas within the village that would benefit from a tidy up have already been identified, and if you would like to help make a positive difference to your community, please email us at: or watch out for our posts on Facebook. In the meantime Kilbarchan Smile volunteers will continue to maintain the various areas around the village including the Gateway Garden which is open weekly to visitors on Tuesdays between 2pm and 4pm.

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Bridge Of Weir Horticultural Society

Kilbarchan & District Beekeepers Association There’s not a lot to do at our hives now as they are closed for the coming winter. So it’s the season for sitting back and reminiscing at the summer’s successes and hopefully not too many failures. Some beekeepers will tell you that the new beekeeping year begins when the honey is removed, others in spring and some will say that there is no start or end to the year. It is a continuous cycle for the bees and those who enjoy looking after them. The winter preparations for the colony begin in autumn when the Queen reduces her laying and honey is stored in the brood chamber instead. As the temperature drops, gaps in the hive boxes are filled with propolis to keep out draughts and the bees cluster into a ball for warmth. Meanwhile the beekeeper has been careful to insulate the hives well, reduce the entrance size and add guards over it to keep out invading rodents. A mouse seeking a warm home can do damage inside the hive before it is overcome. Many hives have a large lump of fondant or dampened sugar bags placed on the frames for extra winter stores.

We meet on Thursday 11th November at 7.30pm in The Bridge. This will be “an evening at the pictures”! We will be watching a presentation to members and those new-togardening, called “Swapping Garden Views“ which will show just what we gardeners get up to in our gardens. As we know, gardeners always like to peek into other gardens so this will be an eagerly anticipated evening! For “newbies” this will also be a great opportunity for you to find out what is growing nearby and perhaps can be grown in your garden? It will certainly be a chance for everyone to exchange ideas and information. Last month we got the ball rolling with a relaxed “reunion” for old members and a “welcome” to newcomers. Frequently we hear that gardens are one of the best places to de-stress, so we were very pleased to welcome several new faces who have made this discovery and are now interested in growing their knowledge as well as their gardens. With our unsettled weather patterns even seasoned gardeners have to think ahead, reflect on these changes and plan accordingly. October started off as a blustery month of showers and yoyoing temperatures. This was the forecast for the month and also for November, so it has been a good time, between showers, to get on with an autumn tidy. It is always best to do this sooner rather than later - but do not be too tidy – remember that insects will hibernate in herbaceous foliage! These insects will then provide much needed food for birds in Spring when supplies are low. Hedgehogs too are more likely to hibernate in a quiet, over-grown corner of your garden. We need to remain vigilant and wildlife-aware in our gardening habits. Members’ houseplants feature here, Calathea and Ginger Lily/Hedychium Forrestii, as do autumn plants, Callicarpa and Sedum Atlantis which illustrate that colour is not just for Spring and Summer.

Away from the hives beekeepers can use these quieter times of the year to repair and replace equipment, read books – on bees of course and attend on-line lectures. Warmer days give an opportunity to check ‘heft’ to see if there is still plenty of food available, so bees don’t go hungry. And if there isn’t regular monitoring of the varroa mite presence using the removable correx inserts, then hives will suffer. So it’s an ongoing circle of loss and renewal whatever the season. If you are interested in beekeeping for yourself please contact our secretary via who will provide more details about our association and how to join. We have a Facebook page which is reserved for members and beekeeping friends, but you can follow us on Twitter @KilbarchanBees and Instagram via kilbarchanbeekeepers

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November 2021

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Are we There Yet?

CLOCKS CHANGE - 31st October 2021 In the UK the clocks go forward 1 hour at 1am on the last Sunday in March, and back 1 hour at 2am on the last Sunday in October.

Have we reached the point where it’s OK to mention Christmas? It’s just that Brighter Bridge of Weir is planning to have its first fund-raising Pop-Up Shop since 2019 on Saturday, 27th November. And the group’s now traditional rustic reindeer will be among the items available to buy. Such is the popularity of the reindeer that the group have again opened a pre-order option. You can find details on the illustrated panel, and more information is available on the group’s Facebook page. Brighter Bridge of Weir have also tackled the scruffy bit at the gable end of Livery Walk, opposite the Heritage Garden. It certainly looks better now than it did. Thanks to Ian Beaton, John and Mark Baxter, and Ryan of JBX for their help.

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21/10/2021 14:52:58

local community, local business, local life .........


In Remembrance. Two letters to Kilbarchan. John Meikle, 27, single, a Kilbarchan plumber, was called up in March 1916. He joined the 1/7th Argylls, in France, in August 1916. By October he was hospitalised with trench fever, returning to duty in January 1917. At the Third Battle of Ypres (July to November 1917), John was wounded in the left leg, and in hospitals from 30th September until January 1918. He had been recommended for the Military Medal and was offered several months work as a plumber at the hospital, which he refused.

The 11/11 Challenge Take on the 11/11 challenge to support the Poppy Appeal Join us in our centenary year and take on the 11/11 challenge. Inspired by the 11th day of the 11th month, we’re asking you to raise funds to help serving and ex-serving personnel and their families during this time of Remembrance. We have lots of ideas that you can choose from. All can be done within a safe environment and with minimal resources. You can take on the challenge in a way that suits you, from baking 11 cupcakes or repurposing 11 items to running up 11 flights of stairs or knit 11 poppies for 11 friends – the choices are endless! By supporting the Poppy Appeal you ensure that those who have served are being looked after no matter what challenges they, and the country faces. Now more than ever, every poppy counts. Join the nation for a 2 minute silence on 11/11 knowing you’ve made a difference to those who need our help today. Find out more and order your free fundraising pack at https://www. things-to-do/fundraise-for-us/1111-challenge/

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He wrote home regularly: on 11th March 1918, to his sister: Dear Bella, ‘……we are having very warm weather, fairly good rations and Jerry not bothering us too much. So you have been having a real good week-end instead of writing to your big brother, you were walking round the Dampton and visiting the Picture House with Bill. Well, you are a lovely girl and I would like to be doing the same thing. However, it may not be very long now before we are all home enjoying ourselves again. I will stop now by asking you to remember me to all at home. Your loving brother. John. That was his last letter to his family. ………………………………………………………

Picture: John Meikle’s name is on a panel in Arras.

1st May, 1918 ‘Dear Mr. Meikle, I have just heard from one of my company that you have not been informed about your son’s death. I am extremely sorry but the Minister of the regiment usually writes to the relative, thus the reason I did not write sooner. On the 23rd March our company was ordered to hold a wooden track at all costs, about 10 o’clock in the morning a Major of the 4th Seaforth Hdrs. was seen to fall about 50 yards in front and Johnnie jumped out of the small trench and crawled out to where he lay and bound up the officer’s wound which was very serious. Having finished he turns and was coming back and a German sniper, who had crawled forward, fired and got him through the head, killing him instantly. About half an hour afterwards, the German Hordes started to advance and owing to casualties we were forced to withdraw. I have been his Company Sergt. Major for some time and during the three and a half years I have been out here I have never met a braver soldier or better man. He was first and foremost at everything, sports as well as fighting, and Mr. Meikle none of those who knew him out here know how he is missed in this company. He was loved and respected by all in the regiment, his comrades along with myself send their deepest sympathy in your loss. I remain yours in sympathy, C.S.M. Cunningham D.C.M., C de G. (Croix de Guerre). B Coy. 7th A&SH Corporal John Meikle, Military Medal has no known grave. Extracts from Listen Closely, an oral history of Kilbarchan 1900-2000. Campbell and MacLeod. Available in Kilbarchan from the butcher, Bobbins and Usave. Also at www.thirstybooks and www.abbeybooks Profits will be shared between Erskine and St Vincent’s.

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November 2021


Kilmacolm Horticultural Society The winter lectures organised by the Kilmacolm Horticultural Society started on a high note last month when Louise Bustard (Glasgow Botanic Gardens) spoke with her usual brilliance in describing the gardens of the Italian Lakes. We are very pleased to be welcoming Nancy Stevens from Baldernock Gardening Club on Wednesday 17th November at 7pm in the Kilmacolm Community Centre. Nancy’s intriguing subject will be SHRUBS ARE BORING - ARE YOU SURE ??. Subscriptions for the current year of £5 can be paid at the door. There will also be the chance to pick up several interesting books on gardening, on offer for a small donation, proceeds to the Ardgowan Hospice charity. Tea/coffee available prior to the start of the lecture. Face masks should be worn within the building until you are seated. Further details for the KHS are on the website.

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21/10/2021 14:53:02

local community, local business, local life .........

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CHILDCARE Houston registered childminders. For an informal chat to find your best childcare, call Helen Smith on 07952 390282 Kilmacolm/Quarriers area registered childminders. P/time or F/time vacancies for u-5’s and after school. T: 01505 873839.







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November 2021

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sales & wants

ITEMS FOR SALE CLOTHES & SHOES Brand new, never been worn, ‘Minuet’ (Petite) Ladies Wool Jacket. Fuchsia Pink. Perfect for an Autumn/Winter wedding. Purchased from House of Fraser for £99, sell £49 ono. Tel: 01505 391536 or Text: 07864 520883. Dinner suit, gents, BHS, worn once, jacket 46” chest regular, trousers 38” waist, 31” inside leg. Great condition, £100 new, sell for £30. Pics available. 07730 541977. Ladies golf waterproof jacket (navy & purple), trousers (navy) and showerproof pullover (silver check pattern). £15 for all. Good condition. Pics available. 07730 541977. Children’s M&S insulated s a l o p e t te s , 3 p a i r s (would sell separately). Hardly worn. Red 5-6 years, Blue 7-8 years, Pink 7-8 years. £10 each. Pics available. 07730 541977. Boys rugby boots Decathlon Kipsta UK 3/ EU 36 (hardly worn). £5. 07730 541977.

Girls party/occasion shoes in winter white. Worn once, excellent condition. Size 3. Pretty flower and pearl design, small heel and strap. £5. Pic available 07730 541977. Trespass Girls outdoor jacket, waterproof/ windproof, two-tone pink, brand new, never worn, labels attached. Age 7-8 (122-128cm). Ski jacket style £10. Pics available. 07730 541977. Trespass Boys outdoor jacket, waterproof/ windproof, black, brand new, never worn, labels attached. Age 7-8 (122128 cm). Ski jacket style £10. Pics available. 07730 541977. Boys black M&S pleat front trousers, non-iron, adjustable waist, size for 12 years (height 152cm/5 ft). New, can’t return. £5. 07730 541977. Girls’ hockey shoes from Decathlon Kipsta FH100, UK 4/EU 37 (hardly worn) in purple and pink. Included is a pair of girl’s white trainers UK 4/EU 37 (excellent condition). Both pairs for £15. 07730 541977. Boys Foot Joy golf shoes, Junior GJ. Size UK 4/EU 36.5 (hardly worn). £20. 07730 541977.


The Business Advertisements (Disclosure) Order 1977 - the Law requires that Advertisers selling goods in the course of a business MUST include the word Trader, Dealer, Agent, Breeder or appropriate wording in the Advertisement to distinguish from private advertisers. Girl Guides jacket (28”/71cm) and polo shirt (size 30”/76cm), great condition. Age 1012. Jacket has 2 pinholes where patrol badge was displayed. £20 for both. 07730 541977. Brownies tee-shirt (30”/76cm) and trousers (24”/60cm). Good condition. £10 for both. 07730 541977. Boys Brigade Junior section sweatshirts £6 each (32”, 30” & 28”), polo shirts £4 each (28” & 26”) and caps with hat badges & surrounds. £5 each (sizes 2 & 3). All good condition. 07730 541977. Boys grey school trousers, 2 pack, 11-12 years (height 152cm, 5ft), regular leg, flat front, stain and weatherproof, crease resistant. Were £15, now £10. Change of school and school colours! 07730 541977. Boys black 2-piece suit, great for Christmas parties. From H&M, great condition, worn twice (carefully!). 1112 years, black silky lining, adjustable waist for trousers. £20. Pic available. 07730 541977.

HOUSEHOLD & GARDEN Gateleg table and 4 chairs. £30. Tel: 01505 331019. Shower Tray 900 x 800 white stone resin with chrome finish hi-flow outlet. Brand New. £75. 07551 947132. Table chairs & sideboard - 67 ” l o n g x 39. 5 ” wide table: 62.5 long x 18.6 wide x 33” high sideboard. £450. Tel: 07796 225146. Motor reclining single armchair. Westbury model from Hampton & McMurray in Bryson Cappuccino colour. Less than 2 years old in perfect condition. Cost £850 will sell for £200. Tel: 07788 917365. WPRO replacement water filter cartridge compatible with Maytag, Whirlpool, KitchenAid and Amana fridge freezer, 1 still in box, no longer required. Cost £40 sell £5. Smoke and pet free home. Tel: 01505 615156. Single “Adjustamatic” bed. Good condition (serviced regularly) bed can be adjusted to raise foot, head of the mattress or both, also has a massage function. Cost £3,000 new. Must collect. £100 ono. Tel: 07780 705763.

2 seater Bed Settee, never been used. Good condition. £200. Tel: 01505 506385.

ELECTRICAL & GAS Washing machine, Beko 1-6kg load, 1200 rpm. Size W 60cm, D 38 cm, H 85 cm. Excellent condition, must be collected. £60 ono. Tel: 07780 705763. Morphy Richards supervacuum lightweight and comes with tools for cleaning car and couch etc. Cost £150 sell £20. Rarely used, smoke free and pet free home. Tel: 01505 615156.

OTHER ITEMS Curtains, made to measure, countrystyle/berry/fruit fabric on cream background (Montgomery fabric), with gold eyelets on header tape, 54” wide x 52” drop, fleecy lining, never been used. £25. Pic available. 07730 541977. Caravan awning curtains 8 of (4 pairs), fresh spring green colour with pattern. Used with curtain rods - pole fitting 32” x 58” drop. £15. 07730 541977.

Caravan awning curtain “J rail”. Used as a curtain track in many awnings: Dorema, NR, Pyramid, etc. One continuous length of 4 meters. Cut it up into smaller pieces, turn it upside down and it becomes curtain hooks for use on the same rail. £4. 07730 541977.

WANTED ITEMS Old records Wanted 45`s & LP`s CASH Paid. Tel: 01505 873958 or 07710 777571. Cash paid for Vinyl Records and Music CDs (a few or a lot). Tel: 01505 329638 or 07765 115347. Local lily grower requires the use of a greenhouse/ polytunnel in Kilmacolm area in return for light gardening duties. Tel: Vince 01505 872082.

FREE CYCLE Ikea Billy book case, 5cd racks and a corner desk, all in matching Beech veneer. Free to collect. Tel: 07840 692532. 3 Worcester varnished light oak doors with clear glass panels. 2 doors are 826 by 2040, 1 Door is 762 by 1981. Must collect. Tel: 07890 680179.

Find a list of local defibrillator sites online:


House/BUNGALOW Wanted To Buy Min 3 beds - Detached or older Semi preferred in Houston, Kilmacolm, or Bridge of Weir area. Sunny back garden. CASH WAITING

Please call: 07753 659804 48-51 CLASSIFIED 319 NOVEMBER 21.indd 49

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local community, local business, local life .........


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November 2021


Local history Johnstone History Society Our second monthly meeting takes place on the 9th November at the usual time of 7.30pm in the Masonic Hall Collier Street. Before we hear our speaker there will be a very short AGM. The speaker for the night will be Mr Jim Renfrew and his subject will be “Norway to Neilston” this should be a very interesting talk as it will include somewhere very close to us. Tonight was our first meeting and it was very well attended and everyone enjoyed it and were pleased to meet up with friends they may not have seen for a while. The Museum continues to open Wednesday Friday and Saturday from 10.30am till 4pm. We still have COVID restrictions in place hand sanitizing and the wearing of masks. We have all our usual books and maps on sale this includes copies of Jackie Whittet’s book “Len’me yer Ear” to obtain a copy of this book a donation to Erskine Hospital is what is asked for as it and author does not want any monies for himself.

the history spot Cartbank Laundry, Kilbarchan Cartbank Laundry was founded about 1903 by brothers, John and Tom Gibson, the sons of Robert Gibson, the owner of Glentyan Laundry. Cartbank Laundry was built on what is now the flat grassy area, on the right of the entry to the cycle path opposite Waterston Terrace. Over the seventy years of its existence little change was made to the west frontage of the main building, and the cobbled path leading up to the laundry which, according to family descendants, was designed specifically to allow easy access to horses and carts. It was still in its original form when photographed in 1974. The building on the right was a later addition. From an early age the two brothers had worked in their father’s laundry, gaining experience in all aspects of the trade. They were ambitious young men and well able to run their own business. In 1910, both brothers were married with young families and lived Easwald Bank. John was in No.18 and Tom was in No.17. Business prospered and before 1915 John, the elder brother, bought Riversdale in Tandlehill Road and Tom bought St Katherines in Ladysmith Avenue. The brothers were now men of property - no more bed recesses, no more shared toilets, and their own private gardens! In the 1920s Gibson Bros. Of Cartbank Laundry continued to expand and modernise. They had clients not only in surrounding villages, but also in Paisley and Glasgow. They no longer used horse and cart for deliveries, and owned a small fleet of delivery vans. In the 1920s it was a regular procedure for Cartbank Laundry delivery van drivers to hand over their week’s takings to the company’s main office on a Thursday. Unfortunately, this regular procedure was public knowledge in the area. On the evening of February, 1925, two robbers broke into the laundry main office and over three hundred pounds of silver coins were stolen. (More about the Cartbank Robbery will appear in the next issue.) In 1937 Gibson Brothers became a Limited Company, with John and Tom as Directors and members of the next Gibson generation joined the family firm. John died in 1950, and Tom in 1965 and the next generation of Gibsons continued to run the company. In the 1960s, laundry businesses all over the country, including Cartbank Laundry, saw a slow steady decline in demand for their services. Although Cartbank Laundry was still a viable, solvent business, the company ceased trading in 1974. The laundry buildings, later used as a store by the paper manufacturers, Smith and McLaurin, were destroyed by fire in July, 1977. Sketch based on OS map: Renfrewshire, XI7, 1912 © 2021, Helen Calcluth, Renfrewshire Local History Forum

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