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FAR FROM A ‘BORING’ VISIT AS SCHOOLCHILDREN WELCOME ‘TUNNELLING TANYA’ TO PAISLEY

It was quite a different morning for a group of schoolchildren from Paisley as they began their day learning about Scottish Water’s major engineering project in the town.

Earlier today the pupils from St Charles Primary were on site to welcome the second, eagerly anticipated, Tunnel Boring Machine (TBM) from Germany onto site. The children heard all about the project and had the chance to see ‘Tunnelling Tanya’ up-close.

The project team ran a competition at the end of last year’s school term asking pupils to come up with a name for the TBM. It was Hope Hunter, now a primary 6 pupil at the school, who impressed the judges with the name ‘Tunnelling Tanya’.

Headteacher Grace Hannigan accompanied the schoolchildren to site and was delighted for them to be there. She said: “It’s been amazing for the pupils to see first-hand what’s involved in a project of this scale and nature. Tunnelling Tanya certainly is an impressive piece of equipment and it’s such an honour that one of our pupils has named her. We’d like to thank everyone involved for providing this unique opportunity.”

One and a half metres in diameter (5ft) and weighing in at an impressive 23 tonnes, Tunnelling Tanya will tunnel at depths of up to 27 metres and will remove 5,000 tonnes of rock as she makes her way under Saucelhill Park in Paisley.

Brian Boland, Project Manager, welcomed everyone to the site. He said: “We’d like to thank you all for coming along today to help mark this important milestone for the project. We’re sure you’ll join us in wishing Tunnelling Tanya well as she sets to work, tunnelling for around eight weeks before emerging at the other side of Saucelhill Park. She’ll undertake the longest drive on this project.”

Working alongside Donegan Civil Engineering, Scottish Water contractors Amey are constructing the large interceptor sewer in Paisley which, once completed, will substantially reduce the frequency of spills from the sewer network into the Espedair Burn and White Cart Water in storm conditions. The project will therefore improve the river water quality in the two watercourses and, in turn, the River Clyde.

Paisley’s MSP George Adam also joined the local schoolchildren on their visit. He said: “It’s not every day you get to see a Tunnel Boring Machine in Paisley – it was a fascinating visit for us all. And what a brilliant name Hope came up with!

“I’m extremely encouraged by the enthusiasm shown by the pupils; they’re so keen to learn and perhaps having had the chance to find out about this major engineering project will spark their interest in a future career in engineering.”

He added: “I’ve really enjoyed hearing about the work that’s being done here and the environmental benefits the project will bring for our vibrant town of Paisley.”

The investment, which is the biggest of its kind Scottish Water has ever made in Renfrewshire, is part of the company’s £250m, five-year programme of work, launched in 2013, to improve river water quality and the natural environment and tackle flooding across the Greater Glasgow area.

Renfrewshire Schools Receive £4,558,000 Attainment Funding Boost

Primary and secondary schools across Renfrewshire will receive £4,558,000 from the Scottish Attainment Challenge fund in 2018/19 to help boost the attainment levels of the most deprived pupils.

 

Nine local authorities in Scotland and an additional 74 individual schools will share £50 million funding from the Scottish Attainment Challenge fund for initiatives targeted at children living in communities affected by high levels of deprivation.

 

This brings the total Attainment Scotland Fund investment to £170 million this year – helping raise attainment in schools across the country.

 

Paisley’s MSP, George Adam said:

 

“The latest Scottish Government investment of £4,558,000 in Renfrewshire schools will help us significantly drive up standards in education and raise attainment in our schools.

 

“We want to ensure that every child in Scotland has the best possible start in life, no matter their background, and this investment will help us narrow the poverty-related attainment gap across Paisley.

 

“We now have hundreds more teachers in classrooms the length and breadth of Scotland as a direct result of the Attainment Scotland Fund – and the SNP Government’s £170 million investment this year will help us raise the bar higher still.”

 

SNP Budget Protects Public Services

Pay Rise For Public Sector Workers – And Lower Taxes For Many

The Scottish Government’s budget protects low and middle income earners and delivers for public services and public sector workers, Paisley’s MSP, George Adam has said – after Finance Secretary Derek Mackay laid his plans before the Scottish Parliament.

The budget delivers progressive reforms to Scotland’s income tax system, with modest increases on high earners while a majority of taxpayers will pay less than in the rest of the UK. Polling has found that most Scots back an increase in income tax for those who can afford it.

Mr Mackay also outlined plans to spend an additional £400 million on the NHS, an expansion in childcare, more spending on broadband, extra funding for our police and fire services – and a pay rise for hard-working public sector employees.

Commenting, George said:

“This is a budget for a stronger economy and a fairer society – with increased funding for our NHS and protection for low and middle income earners.

“The Scottish Government is delivering lower income tax for the vast majority of Scots, with every worker earning less than £33,000 paying less in tax next year – while protecting public services across Paisley that we all hold dear.

“This budget brings an additional £400 million for our NHS, delivers a pay rise for public sector workers, £756 million for affordable homes, additional funding for the arts and culture sector, a £4 billion investment in infrastructure, including in superfast broadband – as well as significant investments in research, education and childcare.

“In the face of the challenges presented by a cut to Scottish Government funding, ongoing Tory austerity, and their extreme Brexit – this budget provides the investment we need to meet these challenges and seize the opportunities of tomorrow.”

Renfrewshire Receives Major Investment In Affordable Housing

Paisley’s MSP, George Adam has welcomed the announcement of a further £1.75 billion Scottish Government investment in affordable housing across Scotland, which includes a £46.244 million investment in Renfrewshire.
 

Councils and house-builders across Scotland’s 32 local authorities will have the opportunity to plan ahead with grant subsidies guaranteed, for the first time, for the next three years until 2021.
 

In 2018-19, £532 million will be shared amongst local authorities – rising to £591 million in 2019-20 and £630 million in 2020-21.

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George commented:

“The announcement that Renfrewshire will receive £46.244 million over the next three years provides the certainty that Paisley and the sector needs to keep progressing and ensures we keep up the momentum to reach the Scottish Government’s target of 50,000 new affordable homes by 2021.

“Increasing the supply of affordable homes is a key SNP commitment and plays a vital role in helping to tackle poverty and inequality in Paisley.

“Committing funding until the end of this parliament will help ensure that Scotland leads the way in building homes that are high-quality, efficient and affordable, and will strengthen our house-building sector and the estimated 14,000 jobs that the affordable housing supply programme supports each year.

“The SNP believes that everyone in Scotland deserves a warm, affordable home and with a huge number of affordable homes approved last year, we are making great progress towards that aim.”