Hundreds of Renfrewshire residents turned out to a special procession and echo the international call to end to violence against women.

The Reclaim the Night procession in Paisley prompted a huge turn out as local people showed their support for the cause. The procession launched Renfrewshire’s 16 Days of Action, a local version of the UN’s international campaign.

Men and women joined the procession, led by Tony Lawler, who bangs the Charleston Drum each year for the Sma’ Shot parade, as they marched from West College Scotland to Paisley Town Hall, where attendees were invited in for an evening of entertainment.

Poet Sean Moore
Poet Sean Moore

At the town hall, Rosie Kane gave a powerful talk on why society needs to break the silence on violence against women. Local community groups also provided music and entertainment.

Rosie Kane, guest speaker
Rosie Kane, guest speaker

Councillor Iain McMillan, Convener of Renfrewshire Council’s Social Work, Health and Wellbeing Policy Board, said: “It’s great to see so many people coming along to support such an important cause.

“There was a great atmosphere throughout the procession and the high turnout shows that the people of Renfrewshire are dedicated to raising awareness of violence against women.”

Renfrewshire’s Provost Anne Hall, who also attended the procession, said: “It was inspiring to see so many people brave the cold and rain to show their support for ending violence against women. Domestic violence can happen to anyone and it’s important to break the stigma and encourage victims to speak out.

“There is always support available and no-one should suffer in silence. Groups like Renfrewshire Womens Aid and Renfrewshire Rising do great work and it is important to continue to support them.”

Anyone suffering from domestic violence can get help via two national helplines, which are available 24/7 and are free to call from a landline.

Scottish Domestic Abuse Helpline – 0800 027 1234
Abused Men in Scotland Helpline – 0808 800 0024
For more information, please visit www.renfrewshire.gov.uk/16DaysofAction

Grace Scott, Soroptimist International – Paisley, Councillor Iain McMillan, Jennifer Galbraith, Scottish Interfaith Group on Domestic Violence, Provost Anne Hall, Rosie Kane, Susan Campbell, Renfrewshire Rising and Ghzala Khan, West of Scotland Regional Equality Council.
Grace Scott, Soroptimist International – Paisley, Councillor Iain McMillan, Jennifer Galbraith, Scottish Interfaith Group on Domestic Violence, Provost Anne Hall, Rosie Kane, Susan Campbell, Renfrewshire Rising and Ghzala Khan, West of Scotland Regional Equality Council.
Dancers who took part in the Break the Chain flashmob in the town hall.
Dancers who took part in the Break the Chain flashmob in the town hall.
Fiona Mackay, Head of Planning and Health Improvement, Renfrewshire CHP, Provost Anne Hall, Councillor Iain McMillan, Convener of Renfrewshire Council’s Social Work, Health and Wellbeing Policy Board and Director of Social Work, Peter Macleod with the procession outside the Abbey.
Fiona Mackay, Head of Planning and Health Improvement, Renfrewshire CHP, Provost Anne Hall, Councillor Iain McMillan, Convener of Renfrewshire Council’s Social Work, Health and Wellbeing Policy Board and Director of Social Work, Peter Macleod with the procession outside the Abbey.
The procession on Abbey Close
The procession on Abbey Close
Crossing Gauze Street onto Abbey Close
Crossing Gauze Street onto Abbey Close
The procession on Smithhill Street
The procession on Smithhill Street
The procession on Smithhill Street
The procession on Smithhill Street
The procession makes its way onto Smithhill Street
The procession makes its way onto Smithhill Street
Crossing the road at Weir Street
Crossing the road at Weir Street
The procession on Renfrew Road
The procession on Renfrew Road
Locals join in the procession at West College Scotland
Locals join in the procession at West College Scotland