Calls for running track and outdoor gym to be included in Paisley Park plan

There have been calls for a running track and outdoor gym to be included in Renfrewshire Council’s Paisley Park plan.

Work is underway at St James’ Playing Fields and cash has been used to replace the old pavilion and restore four full-size pitches.

However, community activists are urging local authorities to invest in other free-to-use sports facilities, benches and picnic tables.

Paisley North Community Council spokesman Mike Dillon spoke about the potential mental health benefits of the device, which could encourage more people in the area to spend time outdoors.

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He said: “They’re a step in the right direction, of course, but we’d like to see more than four football pitches. It’s not a lot. We want to invest more in things that people can use for free.

“It would be great if the Renfrewshire Council or OneRen came to talk to us. This is our region and we want to be involved in our region’s decision-making. We don’t want people telling us what we got – asking us what we want Work hard with us.

“For mums to take their kids to the park, they have a bench to sit on. Now there’s nothing to sit on but the grass. It would be nice to have some picnic tables.

“People deserve a space they can enjoy and enjoy after the pandemic. We know there are a lot of mental health issues and one of the best ways to address them is to get people some fresh air so they can enjoy their surroundings .

“Give people something to use, and they’ll use it.”

Renfrewshire Council confirmed it was open to engaging with community councils and other groups about the park’s future plans.

A spokesman said: “Work is already underway to build new and improved facilities for local footballers at St James’ Stadium.

“The old gazebo has now been demolished and will be replaced with new changing facilities. We will also restore the four full-size football pitches operated by OneRen, as well as landscaping works, as well as road and car park improvements.

“In terms of the future development of the site, we would love to work with the community council or any other local group on how we can work with them to do this in St James.

“Over the past few years, we have supported many community groups in Renfrewshire to come up with their ideas to improve outdoor facilities in their area through our £1.25 million green space, parks and play areas and the Village Investment Fund.”

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