On 26 November 2017, Glasgow held its annual Style Mile Christmas Carnival heralding the launch of the festive shopping campaign. The event saw an afternoon of street theatre and performance, arts events and a highly visual carnival procession with almost 600 performers taking part!
This year’s theme was The Gift of Christmas with the front of the parade led by the Lord Provost, Manager of St Enoch Centre Anne Ledgerwood and Lydia Yilmaz, a 4 year old patient from Glasgow Children’s Hospital Schiehallion ward.
There was a variety of groups taking part from North, East, South and West of the city including Mount Florida Primary School, Samba Ya Bamba Youth Group, Bridgeton Community Learning and the Knightswood School of Dance.
This year was full of amazing performances, thrilling costumes and enchanting acts; a definite date for your annual festive calendar.
Two of Glasgow City Council’s partners in the Autism Friendly City Centre project are ensuring that this Christmas is a time to be enjoyed by all!
Both the Riverside Museum and St Enoch Centre are highlighting their commitment to creating an inclusive, family friendly experience for people with autism and their families and giving a taste of things to come following our official launch in April. Details below.
The Riverside Museum The Riverside museum invite you to join in our Christmas fun this December, from free children’s fairground rides, to markets on our old street and the arrival of a famous Batmobile!
We want this special time of year to be enjoyed by everyone. We will be opening early for children and young people who prefer a calmer, less crowded environment. Children can try out the rides, see the Batmobile and explore the whole museum. The Riverside Museum comfort zone will be available as a quiet space. Our neighbour the Tall Ship will be offering a quiet hour.
Sunday 3rd December 2017 Tall Ship quiet hour 9.30-10.30am Riverside Museum early opening 10-11am
St Enoch Centre For younger members of the family, the sound of sleigh bells at St. Enoch Centre can only mean one thing… Santa has arrived in Glasgow to take up residence in his magical Christmas Grotto. Located outside Debenhams on the first floor of the mall, Santa’s Grotto officially opens on the weekend of the 11th and 12th of November and will be open daily from Thursday 16th November right through until Christmas Eve. A visit to the Grotto costs £5.00 and every little guest will receive a special Christmas gift from Santa in person.
The Grotto will also be running selected quiet hour slots this year, designed for customers with autism who want to visit Santa. These slots can be booked by calling the Customer Services Desk on 0141 204 3900. Please note that only Quiet Hour slots can be booked using this number.
As part of the Glasgow City Region City Deal funding, Glasgow City Council is investing approximately £115 million within the city centre to deliver on the Enabling Infrastructure- Integrated Public Realm (EIIPR) programme, more commonly known as the Avenues.
Sauchiehall Street, between Charing Cross and Rose Street/Blythswood Street
Glasgow Film Office (GFO) is the film commission for Glasgow, the centre of the film and television production industry in Scotland. Since 1997, GFO has been assisting productions shooting on location in the city, activity which has contributed over £250 million to the city’s economy over the last 20 years.
GFO’s two main functions are to market Glasgow as an attractive and viable production base both nationally and internationally and to provide a coordinated and efficient production liaison service. GFO works closely with council departments, Police Scotland and production crews to ensure that all filming activity occurs with the minimum impact on the everyday life of citizens and businesses of Glasgow while delivering the maximum economic impact to the city. The service is provided free of charge to all productions shooting in Glasgow.
Glasgow’s distinctive Victorian architecture and grid system have proved attractive to many productions over the years. The layout of the streets, particularly in the city centre of Glasgow, does, in essence, mimic the grid system in a lot of the major US cities. Glasgow has shown incredible versatility in its ability to double as a location.
In their latest delivery of surprising, humouring and imaginative outdoor performances, Mischief La-Bas brings you Nursery Crymes, a nocturnal, site-specific promenade performance exploring the dark themes behind children’s rhymes and stories.
Set around Parnie Street and the Britannica Panopticon Music Hall, Nursery Crymes brings in some of the country’s most exciting artists of different disciplines to create a series of encounters, installations and performances that probe the sinister side of nursery rhymes.
Hidden behind the hustle and bustle of Argyle Street, Parnie Street and surrounding Trongate has developed its own niche identity as a hub for independent artist galleries, vintage clothes shops and original cafes. The creative atmosphere of the area makes it the perfect setting for Nursery Crymes dark and unexpected take on some beloved childhood characters.
You can find out more about the experience, which takes place on Friday 24th and Saturday 25th November, on www.mischieflabas.co.uk.
Tickets are available through the Tron Theatre Box Office www.tron.co.uk or 0141 552 4267.
On Tuesday 3rd October, around 200 delegates attended the Best Bar None Glasgow’s Raise the Bar event at the Radisson Blu Hotel.
Best Bar None Glasgow was developed in partnership with Glasgow City Alcohol and Drugs Partnership, Glasgow City Council, Community Safety Glasgow, Police Scotland, Scottish Fire and Rescue and the Scottish Late Night Operators Association. Glasgow’s Best Bar None organises regular training seminars in conjunction with the Tennent’s Academy for venues on topics such as stewarding, crime scene preservation, drug prevention, responsible drinking and recognising/protecting vulnerable people.
Following a welcome by Councillor Susan Aitken, Leader of Glasgow City Council, delegates were also addressed by Annabelle Ewing, the Scottish Government Minister for Community Safety and Legal Affairs and Mandy Haeburn-Little, CEO of the Scottish Business Resilience Centre.
The first industry-only Licensing Conference also offered a host of licensed premises across Glasgow, an opportunity to engage with the experts in a question and answer session. The panel included BII Scotland, the Scottish Licensed Trade Association, Glasgow City Council’s licensing department and included specialist licensing solicitors.
Glasgow has a thriving night-time economy and the development of the Best Bar None awards scheme allows venues to demonstrate that they operate to the high standards both themselves and the residents of Glasgow have come to expect. Further detail about the scheme can be found online at: https://www.bbnglasgow.com/
As part of our Autism Friendly Glasgow city centre, we would like to develop a greater knowledge and understanding of autism amongst Glaswegians and city centre businesses/organisations in the hope that this initiative will highlight the additional layer of support available for autistic people and their families.
To assist with this we will be designing a logo to promote the project and essentially become the ‘go to’ sign to highlight Autism Aware venues in the city centre. You’ll be able to see this logo out and about in the city centre on the windows of participating businesses.
To design the logo, and to encourage the lesson of inclusion, we are asking Glasgow schools; including early years, primary, secondary and ASL units to submit bright and colourful entries that will become instantly recognisable to city centre visitors. The winner will then spend time at GCC Graphics Department and see their concept come to life.
The winning entry will be unveiled as part of a series of events during Autism Awareness Month in April.
Entries will be judged by officers from the City Government, GCC Graphics, Autism Network Scotland and the Autism Resource Centre, representatives from the business community, representatives from the autistic community and GCC City Centre team.
Case Study 1: Cath Kidston, Retail store, West Nile Street The Cath Kidston Glasgow branch is a well-known shop situated on West Nile Street in the city centre which was blighted by dozens of bins, belonging to surrounding businesses, left in front of their shop window 24 hours a day. Since the new commercial waste project there has been a dramatic improvement in the appearance and cleanliness of the street outside their business.
Megan Maguire, sales assistant in Cath Kidston, was regularly dismayed by the appearance of the street having spent a lot of time and effort in the presentation of their front window display, “Before this project, the street was an absolute mess. There were tonnes of overflowing bins, bins that didn’t belong to our business and they stunk. You couldn’t have a customer walk past and stop and have a look in our window as you could barely get past the mess.”
Megan is delighted with the results, “The clear up has been fantastic. You can walk down the street now with no smell, no blocked drains anymore and it’s just so much more pleasant when walking past the store”
Case Study 2: Merchant City and Trongate Community Council: The Merchant City and Trongate Community Council is a residents’ forum whose role is to seek and represent the opinions of local people and businesses and to express the wider views of the entire neighbourhood on issues affecting their environment.
Both Garth Street and John Street, in particular, had become a bugbear for residents who were coming home at night to overflowing bins, vermin and litter derived from commercial waste. Merchant City has benefited from a range of public realm work over recent years so the proliferation of big bulky trade waste bins was unwelcome.
Tam Coyle, chair of the community council, is already impressed with the change, “I’m delighted the council has put this initiative in place and it’s back to the way it should be. When we do have the café culture in Glasgow, all these bars and restaurants will benefit, the local residents will benefit and tourists will benefit.”
“Certainly, a few people have mentioned the results already to the community council as they known we’ve been liaising with the council on the issue. I’m absolutely delighted that it’s giving people their streets back.”
Case Study 3: Apex Hotel, Bath Street The award-winning Apex Hotel had been using Sauchiehall Lane to permanently store their commercial waste containers. Since the start of the new trade waste policy, the Apex Hotel has put in place a variety of measures to not only ensure compliance but see them become a champion in effective trade waste management.
Lindsay Sturrock, General Manager felt the project could be challenging initially. He said, “When we were initially told about the changes, there was definitely going to be benefits to us in that the lane was going to be clear and we were going to see a big improvement in the hygiene. From our point of view, it was quite a lot of work as we had nowhere to put the bins and no space inside the building so we had to be a bit creative in thinking where we could put the bins.”
The Apex also attended one of our waste minimisation workshops, carried out by Zero Waste Scotland, in an effort to look at their waste at source and identify any possible reductions and ultimately savings, “In a lot of places they’re used to just opening up the bin and throwing the waste in so we all had to get used to what goes in the correct bins and that it’s effectively flattened. As we’ve only got limited space, it was a re-training exercise.”
The Apex has since created an internal storage enclosure for storage of commercial waste and already managed to reduce their bin numbers by 2.
“Sometimes it’s worth looking at the bigger picture. Certainly, from our point of view, there are no bins on the lane, it’s nice and tidy and there’s no vermin. It’s made a big difference to us.”
Case Study 4: Malones, Bar/Restaurant, Sauchiehall Lane
Malones Bar has its main entrance situated on Sauchiehall Lane so large, unsightly bins dumped in city centre lanes were a hindrance to the appearance of their business. There were around 15 large, commercial bins left near Malones front door, spoiling the look and feel of the area.
“Our front entrance is Sauchiehall Lane.” says Fergal McMahon, assistant manager of Malones, “So it has always been a priority for us to have the lane as clear as possible.”
By working closely with their waste contractor the bar was able to adapt well to the new changes by storing their bins inside and having them collected from within the premises, “A lot of work was involved in planning where we were going to put our bins. We had to speak to our waste contractor and it meant more regular uplifts and staff being shown exactly what was going to be happening.” By doing this, Malones now have a much more flexible approach to their waste management, having them collected out with the presentation windows.
And a cleaner, clearer lane has made an impact already on business, “Immediately you could see people looking down the lane and seeing it was pristine. We’ve noticed already our lunch trade has had a massive increase and every day has been busier than previously.”
Having a clear pathway is crucial for many pedestrians who are blind or partially sighted and who wish to navigate along streets independently. Street clutter, such as bins, can also prevent people with mobility impairments such as wheelchairs and other vulnerable pedestrians from using the pavements with confidence.
Emma Brown of Guide Dogs Scotland welcomes the changes and believes bins along our pavements can cause obstructions which can hamper a person’s progress along a street, “We have loads of guide dog owners that would visit Glasgow from people that live and work here or just visiting. Street clutter is a big problem for someone with sight loss and these bins can block the pavement, especially in a busy city centre with lots of people.”
Knocking into items of street clutter is not only painful but can be a shock to a person who is blind or partially sighted, and could affect that person’s confidence to use these streets and local amenities, “Getting the bins off the streets of Glasgow is a really positive move, it gives people a lot more confidence to walk down the street and less chance of having to go on the road to avoid a bin.”
Glasgow has recently installed CityTrees on Royal Exchange Square and Killermont Street. Glasgow is the first UK city to have CityTrees installed in key city centre locations. Their arrival is a major boost for the city.
Created by Berlin-based Green City Solutions, the CityTrees contain a plant mixture of mosses and vascular plants which provide environmental benefits and introduce additional “greening” to the city centre by removing dust and nitrogen dioxide from the air.
The CityTrees include information panels which provide technical details about the installations and advice on air quality, health, and sustainable travel. The installations are largely self-maintaining, with solar panels providing power for irrigation and sensors which monitor the plants and the surrounding environment. Rainwater is also gathered and recycled through the irrigation system.
In addition to providing stability, the benches on both sides of the CityTree provide convenient spots to watch the world go by.
The award winning 1 City Centre Mural Trail, funded by the City Centre Mural Fund, has continued to grow and attract attention and interest. The much-loved art project has been enjoyed by residents and visitors alike, with enquiries being received from as far as New Zealand, USA and the Middle East and Smug’s recent St Mungo mural receiving well over a million hits on social media in its first few days after unveiling. Hundreds of travel blogs are promoting the mural trail and hugely supportive articles have also assisted in this, including Conde Nast and the New York Times, amongst others.
The project gained national attention recently with the addition of three new murals celebrating one of Glasgow’s greatest loved comedians, Billy Connolly, on his 75th birthday. The 3 pieces of artwork were created by contemporary Scottish artists John Byrne, Rachel McLean and Jack Vettriano and left their unique mark across the city centre as murals, as shown on BBC Scotland programme Billy Connolly: Portrait of a Lifetime. You can find these new murals at Osborne Street (John Byrne) and Dixon Street (Jack Vettriano) and Rachel McLean’s vinyl replica in the Gallowgate.
We are pleased to note that many spin-off benefits of the murals are happening including the development of small businesses who offer walking tours and guidance on the murals and surrounding attractions.
For people wishing to complete a guided tour of the Mural Trail, Photo Walk Scotland has their Glasgow Street-Art Tour, giving their participants photographic tuition along the way. The tour has 5* accreditation from Visit Scotland and received a Certificate of Excellence 2017 from Trip Advisor.
Mural trail booklets can be picked up from a variety of venues including:
Gallery of Modern Art
Kelvingrove Art Gallery
The Glasgow Building Preservation Trust has invited the Mural Trail to be part of the Doors Open Day since 2015. We will be taking part again with a guided walking tour on 16/17th September 2017. http://glasgowdoorsopenday.com/
PARTNER CONTRIBUTIONS: Art Pistol
the City Centre mural trail and mural fund project won the Enterprise Award at the 30th annual Arts & Business Scotland Awards in March 2017