Guest blog: Linstone Housing Association on becoming an ambassador for Paisley 2021
In this blog, Linzi Clark (Engagement Intern) updates on the recent work undertaken to get 12 local organisations on board as ambassadors for the Paisley 2021 City of Culture bid.
On Tuesday 25th October, the Paisley 2021 team embarked on a culture-filled tour around 13 organisations in Renfrewshire.
On board our new state of the art ‘Culture bus’ we also had Alan McNiven and Stacey Gallacher from Engage Renfrewshire, as well as Sharon McAuley and Emma Richardson from the Star Project.
Some songs, plenty of laughs and far too many selfies later, we had successfully linked with 12 local community organisations and were delighted to announce them as our Paisley 2021 Ambassador Organisations.
These organisations give so much back to the people of Paisley, and we’re delighted to have them on board.
For example, Linstone Housing Association has been in operation for over 17 years, investing significantly in Paisley and building a high profile within the community and beyond.
Last year, Linstone were finalists at the Chartered Institute of Housing Excellence Awards for their work to insulate homes and reduce fuel poverty in Paisley. They were also the runners-up for the Small Housing Association of the year at the Scottish Home Awards.
We spoke to Adele Fraser, Chief Executive at Linstone, about becoming Paisley 2021 Ambassadors!
In what ways does Paisley bidding to be UK City of culture benefit your Organisation?
Raising the profile of Paisley and wider Renfrewshire as a good place to live. It highlights the cultural benefits that Paisley has to offer. We want to be able to have a healthy demand for our affordable housing in Renfrewshire and attract people to live in our communities. It helps if there are work opportunities, good local services, transport links, educational and leisure opportunities. I think that Paisley 2021 highlights a lot of the positives about the area.
From your experience, why do you think Paisley has what it takes to be UK City of Culture?
There is a lot of potential for Paisley to be at the forefront of regeneration in Scotland and the UK. As a locally based housing association, Linstone has experience of working closely with communities and third sector organisations – so we know about the real positives that exist. Paisley really has the resources available – sometimes it just needs a fresh approach to be able to really appreciate what’s there for both local people and visitors to Paisley. I think Paisley has done really well to date. It’s about having long term aspirations and also grasping the thistle of dealing with the difficult challenges.
How do you plan to use your new role as a Paisley 2021 Ambassador organisation?
Telling as many people as possible about the bid, highlighting the positives, using our contacts to spread the word, and thinking of Paisley as a location for important events.
Linstone recently launched the innovativeConnect4Renfrewshire project (http://www.linstone.co.uk/our-houses/help-with-your-tenancy/connect4renfrewshire/) which is a partnership project funded by the Big Lottery Fund and a direct response to Welfare Reform.
They’re also supporting the Community Connectors programme (https://www.facebook.com/CommunityConnectorsInRenfrewshire/?ref=hl) by providing a “Health and Housing Hub” which provides free impartial housing advice for any kind of property.
With so much fascinating work going on, we are thrilled to have Linstone join us in #backingthebid, and look forward to joining them on their exciting journey!
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