Paisley Halloween Festival brings thousands of people to town
Paisley’s hugely popular annual Halloween Festival brought more than 25,000 people to the town looking to enjoy all the frights, lights and fun of the festival.
The event, which is part of Renfrewshire’s Winter Events programme, is part of Paisley’s bid for UK City of Culture 2021.
The festival kicked off on Friday night with the Paisley Town Hall Halloween Ball and culminated in a lantern-lit parade through the town centre led by fantastic fire dance performers, FlameOz.
More than 400 people took part in this year’s parade making it the biggest one yet. A number of community groups walked the route including PACE, Who Cares Scotland, Street Stuff, Jump Dance, Solid Rock Academy and Angela McCallum School of Music to name a few.
The festival atmosphere continued in Abbey Close itself with a fire garden run by outdoor arts specialists Walk the Plank, featuring fire-breathing sculptures and spooky illuminations. There was also a spectacular performance from the Spark! LED Drummers.
Throughout the day there was plenty to keep both children and adults entertained – from Halloween arts and crafts, mascot meet and greets, face painting, a Halloween market, and zombie apocalypse workshops at Paisley Town Hall to gruesome storytelling from Paisley’s past and scary pumpkin carving workshops at Paisley Abbey.
A new addition to the festival, the cinema screenings, proved popular with visitors looking for a good scare by showing spooky films like classics Ghostbusters, Halloween and The Lost Boys.
There was also a funfair, street entertainers and a great selection of outdoor food vendors, as well as some excellent entertainment at the Live Stage featuring music from local musicians and dance groups.
As part of the festival there was a performance of Seraphina. The show – a story which explores the history of Witches – was funded by Renfrewshire’s Culture, Heritage and Events fund, aimed at boosting the local creative scene ahead as part of the Paisley 2021 bid.
Paisley 2021 bid director, Jean Cameron, said: “This year’s Paisley Halloween Festival was a fantastic spectacle which showed why it’s one of the most popular events in the town’s calendar.
“It was fantastic to see so many people dress for the occasion in their scariest fancy dress and it was wonderful to see so many of our brilliant community groups take part in this year’s parade.
“With a decision due on Paisley’s bid for UK City of Culture 2021 before the end of the year, it highlighted once again the flourishing creative scene we have here.”