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Paisley, Scotland

Paisley is a large town and the administrative centre of Renfrewshire, Scotland.

The town itself is situated approx 7 miles west of Glasgow and is actually closer to Glasgow Interational Airport than Glasgow.

Paisley is the largest town in Scotland. Historically, it has Monastic origins, due to a site near a waterfall where it is said a chapel was established by an Irish monk named Saint Mirin, it is also said to have been the site of a Roman encampment, but the priory prevailed and in 1219 it was promoted to Abbey status.

Not long after the time of Robert the Bruce and the Stewarts (mid-1400's) Paisley coalesced under James II's wish that the lands be a single regality and as a result markets, trading and commerce began to flourish.

Many trades sprung up and the first schools were established and by the mid-nineteenth century Weaving had become the main industry. Paisley is also still very well known for the Paisley Shawl and its distinctive pattern which originated around this time.

Mainly because of the Weaving fraternity, Paisley gained notoriety as being a literate and somewhat radical town, although it could be argued in a fiercely positive direction, by this time there was a real mixture of religous opinions and healthy drink-fuelled debate raged at night amongst the Weavers, Poets, Merchants, Masons and others.

Paisley's evoloution has been healthy, its gradual expansion throughout the dark days of the great wars has been quiet and steady, the Mills have come and gone and the town centre now resembles most other town centres in Scotland, but if you look closely you can see pockets of interest and outstanding beauty.

Paisley folk, or 'Buddies' as they refer to themselves are very proud of the city and its rough edges, they are also very friendly and pragmatic people. Maybe traces of the radical working class thinkers remain.

See also: University of Paisley