Sean Batty filming at the mill in Paisley town centre

Television presenter shines a spotlight on businesses as part of Scotland Loves Local campaign as he meets members of Paisley First.

Sean Batty is leading the rallying cry for Buddies to choose local and get behind businesses in Paisley.

The STV weatherman has shone a spotlight on some of the gems of his home town as an ambassador for Scotland Loves Local.

And, in a new promotional video highlighting the critical need for people to spend with enterprises in their community, Paisley businesses told Sean how the support of locals can be the difference between make or break for them.

The presenter said: “I’ve loved the chance to shout about some of the things which make the town so special, showcasing some pretty remarkable businesses, and the people behind them.

“There’s so much going on that makes us positive about the future. Tens of millions of pounds is being invested in major regeneration projects which will have a big part to play in that.

“But, underpinning so much of what can be achieved is the support of people who choose local, whether they’re shopping, meeting friends or enjoying a family day out.

“We want a bright future for town centres. We found out from businesses in Paisley why it’s so important that people shop locally, spending money locally, supporting local businesses and – most importantly – the local people who run them.”

Sean is working alongside Scotland’s Towns Partnership (STP), the organisation which spearheads Scotland Loves Local, on a series of new videos.

Each highlights the ways in which people can get behind the people and enterprises in their area – and how that support will build a stronger, more sustainable future for the places in which they live.

Sean interviewed members of Paisley First Business Improvement District about the life-improving impact of choosing local – with the hope that their insight will help inspire action in communities across the country.

Clemency Dowling of With Love Flowers, on Causeyside Street, is one of those who features and says: “It’s crucial that local people come in and support us. This is our livelihood. Without them we wouldn’t be here.”

It was a sentiment shared at Restoration & Creation on nearby Brown’s Lane.

Caroline Sweeney co-founded the enterprise, which helps restore furniture as well as releasing creativity through various activities and community initiatives.

She said: “Businesses need the community to come and support us. It’s the absolute bread and butter for us. If we don’t have that support, sadly businesses can’t stay open.”

The longevity that local support can ensure for any enterprise was highlighted at Houston Traditional Kiltmakers.

Ewan MacDonald’s family has been running the High Street shop since it opened 1909.

Chatting about the major life events that people turn to them for – and how the business has expanded over the years thanks to that ongoing local support, he said: “We’ve grown up here and would never move. We’ll always be Paisley Buddies. We’re still going strong after 114 years.”

In the video, Sean shares how he has seen the town centre change in recent years, including highlighting the work ongoing to restore Paisley Town Hall, as well as the transformation of the former town centre mill into homes and a museum.

Elaine Templeton, Vice-Chair of the town’s Business Improvement District, Paisley First, said: “Around 70 pence in every pound spent in Paisley goes back into the local economy if you shop locally.

“Our local businesses are the heartbeat of our town centre so please support them and put Paisley first when it comes to shopping and socialising.”

Businesses in Paisley, and throughout Renfrewshire, have been major supporters of the Scottish Government-backed Scotland Loves Local campaign since it was first launched in the summer of 2020.

While born out of that first coronavirus lockdown, it has evolved into a campaign for long-term behaviour change in communities, supporting ongoing financial fightback from the pandemic, the cost of living crisis and supporting local responses to the climate emergency.

In a recent survey by STP, three-quarters of Scottish businesses said the support of local people is critical to their survival.

Find out more about the Scotland Loves Local campaign at

Photo Credit: Jamie Simpson / Scotland’s Towns Partnership

By Ricky Kelly

Main writer for Renfrewshire News

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