Promoting Creative Arts in Community Regeneration: SURF Awards Shared Learning Workshop

This free half-day SURF Awards workshop event in Paisley Town Hall on 1 June provides an opportunity to explore successful approaches towards promoting creative arts in community regeneration. The winning and highly commended projects from the ‘Creative Regeneration’ category highlighted in the 2016 SURF Awards process will provide comment on their experiences and transferable learning.

Workshop guests will firstly hear from a project representative from the ‘Creative Regeneration’ category winner The Stove Network. Based in Dumfries town centre The Stove Network is an independent arts organisation working with a wide range of local and national partners to found an artist-led collective that engages with local people to deliver a range of culture-based regeneration initiatives.

This will be followed by input from the highly commended Hippfest project.  Run by Falkirk Community Trust the Hippodrome Festival of Silent Film (Hippfest) delivers a high-profile national festival of silent film that supports local community regeneration outcomes in the town of Bo’ness.

Guests will then hear from the second of the highly commended projects Made in Easterhouse. Managed by Glasgow East Arts Company’s Platform, Made in Easterhouse marked the achievements of a successful community arts centre on its tenth anniversary.

The event will close with Creative Scotland providing detail on their current priorities towards supporting creative arts organisations. Followed by a short input from the Paisley 2021 bid for City of Culture. It will then open up to a discussion on National Policy.

The SURF Awards ‘Creative Regeneration’ judging panel team – comprising representatives of Creative Scotland, Craft Town Scotland, Plantation Productions and North Edinburgh Arts – were particularly enthused by the level of community engagement and lasting impact in each area within all three shortlisted projects in this category. The judges will be participating in the workshop, which also features a discussion session and networking lunch, to help draw out transferable lessons from the participating projects.

Event page and booking.



10:00am   Welcome and Coffee

10:30am   Introduction: Andy Milne, Chief Executive, SURF

10:40am   Presentation, The Stove Network: Matt Baker, The Stove Network

10:55am   Presentation, Hippfest: Alison Strauss, Falkirk Community Trust

11:05am   Presentation, Made in Easterhouse: Jenny Crowe, Glasgow East Arts Company

11:15am   Open Discussion, Questions and Comments with representatives from the projects

11:40am   Presentation, Creative Scotland: Karen Dick, Creative Scotland

11:50am   Presentation, Paisley 2021 Bid: Jean Cameron, Paisley 2021

12.00pm   Open Discussion on National Policy

12:25pm   Summary and Thanks: Andy Milne

12:30pm   Networking Lunch

When and Where

When: Thursday 1st June, 10am – 1pm

Where: Paisley Town Hall, Paisley

About the SURF Awards

Please visit  for more information on the SURF Awards and the outcomes of the 2016 process.

Places are free but numbers are limited. To reserve a place please complete the booking form. If you have any queries or difficulties with this please contact Emma Scott, Information and Communications Officer, or 0141 4406392

Event page and booking.


more details
What Works in Place Based Regeneration?

SURF, the What Works Scotland research centre and the University of Glasgow’s Training and Employment Research Unit (TERU) have teamed up to contribute to a special seminar exploring ‘what works’ in economic regeneration in the current climate for Scotland’s places.

Who: The event is being arranged by What Works Scotland and key contributors include Prof Ken Gibb, What Works Scotland Co-Director, and Prof Alan McGregor of TERU. They will be presenting a new study on the theme drawn from an evidence review including 20 in-depth interviews with policy experts and practitioners. SURF Chief Executive Andy Milne will also be sharing emerging outcomes from the Alliance for Action initiative. 

Where: The venue is the St Mungo Museum on 2 Castle Street, Glasgow.

When: The seminar takes place at 9:30am on Tuesday 13 June, finishing with a 1pm lunch.

Cost: The event is free to attend, but places must be pre-booked.

Book: Places can be registered on the seminar’s Eventbrite listing.

Further Information: Please contact Lynda Frazer, What Works Scotland Project Manager, on 0141 330 8587 or with any queries.

more details
National Active Travel Conference 2017

The Walking, Cycling, Connecting Communities team is pleased to announce the 9th National Active Travel Conference.

The aim of this year’s WCCC National Active Travel Conference is to inspire delegates to better understand and engage in the culture and language employed by those who are not direct advocates of active travel. We want to move away from preaching to the converted and towards listening to the unconverted. The vision is to understand how we can walk in their shoes and talk in their language to help us overcome barriers and better promote active travel throughout Scotland.

Walking, Cycling, Connecting Communities is a group of organisations working for a Scotland which supports walking and cycling as the natural choice for short journeys.

Read more and book:



Wed 14 June 2017

09:00 – 16:00 BST

Add to Calendar


The Studio Glasgow

67 Hope Street


G2 6AE

View Map



09:00 – 10:00 Registration, refreshments and exhibition


10:00 – 10:10 Chair’s opening remarks

Dougie Vipond, Broadcaster


10:10 – 10:40 Communicating the Scottish Government’s Active Travel


Humza Yousaf MSP, Minister for Transport and the Islands,
The Scottish Government

Includes questions & discussion

10:40 – 11:00 Keynote Speaker:

Delivering Active Travel Without the Hot Air

Dr Steve Melia, Senior Lecturer: Planning & Transport, University of the West of England

11:00 – 11:20 Making active travel matter more in Edinburgh

Lesley Hinds, Former Councillor, Lord Provost and Transport Leader, The City of Edinburgh Council

11:20 – 11:30 Questions and discussion

to Steve Melia and Lesley Hinds

11:30 – 12:00 Refreshment break and exhibition


12:00 – 13:00 Panel discussion and questions from the floor:

Listening to Alternative Perspectives on active travel

  • Neil Greig, Director of Policy and Research, IAM RoadSmart
  • Chris Little, Regional Policy Advisor, Road Haulage Association Ltd
  • Panelist TBC – High Streets/Business Improvement Districts
  • Panelist TBC  – Housing
  • Panelist TBC – Education and/or Health Professionals


13:00 – 14:00 Lunch and exhibition



14:00 – 14:40 Masterclass sessions:  Reaching out to new audiences for

active travel

Choose only ONE from the sessions below:

Masterclass A – Using the Place Standard Tool for better community engagement
Diarmaid Lawlor, Director of Place, Architecture & Design Scotland
Johnny Cadell, Design Advisor, Design Forum, Architecture & Design Scotland

Masterclass B – Delivering effective social marketing strategies
Tim Steiner, Marketing and Communications Director, SYSTRA Ltd

Masterclass C – Identifying and communicating with different stakeholders 
Speaker TBC


14:40 -14:45 Transition back to the auditorium


14:45 – 15:00 Masterclass feedback


15:00 – 15:20 Making active travel a priority for local government

Paul Lawrence, Executive Director – Place, The City of Edinburgh Council

15:20 – 15:30 Evaluation and final remarks by the Chair


15:45 Close of Conference

more details
Towns Tea Party 2017


This event is free for STP Members, who can RSVP below.

Tickets for non-members are £15+ VAT, and can be purchased here.

Join Scotland's Towns Partnership and the towns network for this year's Towns Tea Party! This year we focus on ‘Developing Scotland’s Waterfronts’, launch the FutureTown Design Competition 2017, and review progress and future plans for Scotland’s towns.

With Scotland possessing the longest coastline of any country within the British Isles, many towns are situated by the open sea and inland sea lochs. At the Towns Tea Party we will hear from developments in Dundee and Fort William, to gain inspiration and ideas for how towns can make the most of their geographical location. 

Taking place in The Melting Pot, Edinburgh, this is an excellent opportunity to gather with colleagues from across the country to network, learn and to be part of the launch of the third FutureTown Design Competition. Fort William Town Team submitted the winning entry in 2016 and will help us launch the 2017 campaign. More information and past entries can be found here.

The Towns Tea Party will also incorporate the Scotland's Towns Ltd Annual General Meeting and this is a great chance to be updated with STP's progress and future activities. Check out the STP Infograph for a quick picture of what we have been up to.

We look forward to welcoming STP members and the wider towns network to Edinburgh for tea and cake along with Allan Watt, Dundee Waterfront Project Director; Sarah Kennedy, Fort William Marina and Shoreline Company; Phil Prentice, Chief Officer, Scotland’s Towns Partnership; and Professor Leigh Sparks, Chair, Scotland's Towns Partnership. Please see agenda below for full information.


This event is free for STP Members, who can RSVP below.

Tickets for non-members are £15+ VAT, and can be purchased here.


Towns Tea Party

Incorporating the Annual General Meeting of Scotland’s Towns Ltd

14 June 2017, 1400 – 1600. The Melting Pot, 5 Rose Street, Edinburgh EH2 2PR



1400      Towns Tea Party

Afternoon Tea and Networking

1430      Welcome & AGM Business

                Professor Leigh Sparks, Chair of Scotland's Towns Partnership

1440       Scotland’s Towns – Progress and Future Plans

                Phil Prentice, Chief Officer, Scotland’s Towns Partnership


1450       Dundee’s Leading Edge Waterfront Development

                Allan Watt, Dundee Waterfront Project Director

1510       Future Town Design Competition Winner 2016 – Fort William Marina and Shoreline Company

                Sarah Kennedy, Fort William Marina and Shoreline Company

1530      Questions and Answers

1545      Future Town Design Competition 2017 Launch

              Professor Leigh Sparks, Chair Scotland's Towns Partnership 

Close (1600)

more details
Explore Quality Co-working Workshop

An energising two-day workshop exploring key insights and strategies for building your quality coworking business.

Are you planning to launch, or have you recently launched, a quality coworking space? Then this event is for you!

  • Receive critical insights that will shape your business model and delivery, and inform success for your business and your community.
  • Learn from highly experienced, successful quality coworking space operators.
  • Work on your plans for developing your space alongside others on the same journey.

Join other leaders who are creating quality coworking businesses in their communities at EXPLORE Quality Coworking, June 22—23, 2017.

Read more here

more details
Funding: Where’s the Money? STP Funding Workshop June 2017

This event is free for STP Members, who can RSVP below.

Tickets for non-members are £60 (inc VAT), and can be purchased here.

Identifying and accessing funding is a key challenge for organisations and groups working to improve towns and communities. To help you out, Scotland's Towns Partnership is bringing together funding experts and providers for an afternoon of practical advice, learning and sharing. Don't miss this opportunity to connect with some of Scotland's major funders!

These partners are ambassadors for the regeneration of our places and want to support you in achieving your goals and projects. STP’s resident funding expert will also provide you with top tips for approaching and completing the applications which can sometimes be a daunting task.

The first part of the session will share expert advice from Scotland’s Towns Partnership, Funding Scotland and the Scottish Local Authority External Funding Officers Group on identifying, applying for and obtaining the right funds to support your activities or project.

The second part of the workshop is a unique Funding Surgery. You will be divided into small groups, and representatives of major funders will sit at each table for 15 minutes to discuss directly about how they might be able to help you. The funding experts will then rotate, giving you a chance to speak to each funding provider present.

See below for the invited organisations and agenda for the session.

For a taste of what to expect, check out the August 2016 Funding Workshop report.

This event is free for STP Members, who can RSVP below.

Tickets for non-members are £60 (inc VAT), and can be purchased here.


Big Lottery Fund

The Big Lottery Fund is responsible for distributing 40 per cent of all funds raised for good causes by the National Lottery. This totals over £650 million each year.

Funding Scotland

Funding Scotland is a free online funding search engine launched by the Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations in 2014. From small grants to funding for big capital projects, it can help you track down the funding you need to make a difference in your work. Funding Scotland provides information on over 1200 funds which support Scottish projects.

Heritage Lottery Fund

From the archaeology under our feet to the historic parks we love, from precious memories to rare wildlife… HLF use money raised by National Lottery players to help people across the UK explore, enjoy and protect the heritage they care about.

Scotland’s Towns Partnership

STP is the go-to body for Scotland’s towns; a hub for promoting all things towns, and a hive of activity to help you learn, connect, find practical support and advice, and share good practice and knowledge. It is a repository for a wealth of intelligence around the Town Centre Action Plan and other policy conversations.

Sustrans Scotland

Sustrans Scotland works closely with communities, the Scottish Government, local authorities and other partners to ensure that the people of Scotland have access to a network of safe walking and cycling routes, making Scotland a healthy, happy place to live, work and play, and a sustainable and beautiful tourist destination.


SLOG is a professional network of local authority officers in Scotland exchanging and sharing information and experience on funding sources such as Lottery, EU funding, Trust and Foundations. SLOG acts also as an interface with funders to promote local authorities and communities they represent. 

Zero Waste Scotland

Zero Waste Scotland provides support to SME’s, which can include supporting businesses to access funding that will allow them to make changes and savings in their operations. ZWS supports delivery of the Scottish Government’s circular economy strategy and the EU’s Europe 2020 growth strategy. Its goal is to help Scotland reap the environmental, economic and social benefits of making best use of the world’s limited natural resources.


Agenda - Funding: Where’s the Money?

28th June 2017, ADS Edinburgh

13:30 Coffee and Networking

13.45 Scotland’s Towns Partnership – Helping you to Help your Town

Find out how Scotland’s Towns Partnership can help you understand your town; share tools to shape its direction; and signpost you to funding to make it a reality.

Phil Prentice, Scotland’s Towns Partnership

14.00  Funding Scotland - Scotland’s free online search engine.

From small grants to funding for big capital projects, find out how to track down the funding you need to make a difference in your community.

Rhonda McLean, Funding Officer, Funding Scotland

14:15 Funding Success!  

Advice on finding and securing the right funds for your project.

Ellen Archibald, Chair, Scottish Local Authority External Funding Officers Group and Development Officer, North Lanarkshire Council

14:45  Questions

*Top up with Coffee and Biscuits*

Funding Surgery Sessions

15:00 Quick pitch from all funders at the start of the session.  (2 mins each)

15:15 Surgery sessions

There is a funder at each table. Find out how they might help you. Funders move round each table every 15 minutes.

  • Heritage Lottery Fund        
  • Sustrans Scotland  
  • Big Lottery Fund
  • Zero Waste Scotland

16:30 Close 

more details
A Smarter Scotland (Digital Strategies and Technologies)

Rapier Systems, Scotland’s leading wireless systems integrator, invites you to join us for a unique event in June 2017.

Read more and book here

This half day event (9am to 1pm) is designed to provide you with key information, helping you better understand what can best deliver Smarter Scotland.

You will hear from partners who are all leaders in their fields, working together to deliver coherent, joined-up thinking in what can appear to be a very muddled industry. You will also hear from those in the public sector, expressing their aspirations for delivering game-changing technology in their towns, cities and regions.

Who should attend?

We are inviting decision makers from Scotland’s Public Sector - Local Authorities (Economic Development Officers, IT and Innovation Managers, Director Level Officers), the Health Service, Colleges and Universities, BID and Locality Managers, Government Departments, Tourism Bodies and other supporting public services, . The event is designed for those who have an interest in exploring opportunities to develop projects under the Smart City and Internet of Things (IoT) initiatives - with a view to delivering tangible and measurable benefits in towns, cities and regions across Scotland.

Why should I attend?

You will gain a much broader understanding of the technology that exists today, as well as what is being developed for tomorrow. This will help you to make decisions that will transform your town, city or region into a technologically smarter place. There will be no selling or specific product placement at the event. It is not funded through the sale of exhibition space. It is run by practitioners who have many years experience in proven service delivery, with content designed to deliver clear and concise information, and to stimulate the discussion about IoT, Smart City and a Smarter Scotland.

Speakers include:

  • Richard Watson – Rapier Systems
  • Tom Flanagan – Perth & Kinross Council
  • John Robertson – The Highland Council
  • Dr Mark Begbie – CENSIS
  • Spencer Hinzen – Ruckus Wireless
  • Richard Mumford – RG Nets
  • Nick Platt-Higgins – Axis Communications
  • Luke 0’Kelly – Siklu Communications
  • Richard Roberts – Purple
  • Simon Baldwin – Destination66

Spaces are limited so please register as soon as possible to avoid missing out.


What are my transport/parking options for getting to and from the event?

Via Train - Perth has a main-line railway station with connections from Inverness, Aberdeen, Dundee, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Stirling etc. Scotrail Website is here

Via Bus / Coach - Stagecoach Website is here

Via Car - Parking is available for a fee adjacent to the venue at Kinnoull Street Multi-Storey with details here

On Foot - The main entrance to Perth Concert Hall is on Mill Street.

How can I contact the organiser with any questions?

Please email any questions to

Is my registration fee or ticket transferrable?

Yes, however please let us know before the event - giving us 24 hours notice via email to

Are refreshments provided or available?

Refreshments will be provided throughout the event.

Read more and book:

more details
Sustainable Building 2017

Sustainable Building 2017: creating homes and communities for the future

September 6th 2017, Saracen House, Glasgow


Scotland's Towns Partnership Chief Officer Phil Prentice is speaking at this event. In addition, STP members can benefit from a discounted rate of attendance of £75+VAT. Please contact to receive a discount booking code. 

Sustainability is a crucial factor within the modern construction process and the creation of new homes and communities as we as the infrastructure that serves them. This reflects a wider cultural prioritisation of low carbon, environmentally responsible credentials. Given the size and scale of construction activity within the housing and social housing sectors recently and over the coming years, improvements in this area can have a dramatic impact on social and environmental objectives. This has also driven the demand for the new communities and the thousands of new homes which have been promised to be delivered to a higher standard with contractors expected to add social, economic and environmental value and sustainability.

 This conference will not only consider the incorporation of sustainable principles within the construction processes of new buildings and the retrofitting of existing stock, from changes in public policy to the evolution and innovation in design, the development of new materials, the creation of jobs and apprenticeships within these new communities but it will also examine the progress made towards reaching Scotland’s ambitious housing targets and what needs to be done to ensure these are met. Following on from last year’s conference, this event will bring together thought leaders from across Scotland and beyond to discuss the modernisation of construction practices, and explore how innovative solutions can be used to improve sustainability and deliver lasting value. The conference will also present a unique forum for knowledge exchange, open discussion and cross-sector engagement.


Event Agenda


9:20 Opening address from the Chair

9:30 Session 1: Strategies for New and Existing Communities

Current Progress, Housing Targets and Upcoming developments

Are we making the most of existing stock and retrofitting

Town Centre Living – Phil Prentice, Scotland’s Towns Partnership

Creating Better Communities


11:00 Break

11:15 Session 2: New technologies and innovations for sustainable building

Innovation in sustainable communities and place making – Craig McLaren, RTPI Scotland

Design and innovation case study – Diarmaid Lawlor, A+DS

People and places; creating a liveable place

Building technology case study – Kingspan Representative


12:45 Lunch

13:45 Session 3: Preparing for the future and creating environmental, social and economic sustainability through the supply chain

Are we achieving our environmental and social KPIs?

Creating a Future Ready Workforce

Construction industry sustainability and supply chain case study


15:15 Closing remarks from The Chair

15:30 Close

There are a limited number of discounted 'early bird' places available for just £89+VAT which will be allocated on a first-come-first-served basis, so we do recommend booking early to avoid dissapointment. To book your place click on the button below or visit

more details
Institute of Place Management: 4th International Biennial Conference

Institute of Place Management: 4th International Biennial Conference

7th – 8th September 2017, Manchester Metropolitan University, Manchester UK

Conference Chairs: Dr Ares Kalandides, Dr Steve Millington and Professor Cathy Parker

The repercussions of the 2008 global financial crisis continue to reverberate across the world, presenting major challenges to local development.  In many places, after decades of regeneration, the money has simply run out. This is an era of austerity, but one where responsibility for prosperity (or failure) is being devolved and localised through current political agendas.  This coincides with calls to take back control, both in the UK and USA. However, the local capacity to transform places, to tackle serious issues such as income inequality and climate change is severely over-estimated, and brings into question the future of the current economic development mantra, inclusive growth.

Despite these broad economic and political uncertainties, places continue to evolve.  In the absence of public or private funding there is a greater emphasis on communities to self-organise, through ordinary and neighbourhood placemaking.  The stories of how people in places support the arts, the local heritage, the vulnerable, the young and the old can be an inspirational example of creativity and compassion. Nevertheless, the organisers of food banks, free after-school clubs, community litter-picks, and all the other people who attend neighbourhood gardens, produce local festivals and events, are under-resourced, under-supported, and under-valued. 

In this context, we want to understand more about placemaking as a participatory and inclusive practice, which connects individuals into networks of place-based action and results in the context of austerity, devolution, and local responsibility.  We are also interested in moving beyond the silos of academics disciplines or professional interventions, to consider the connection between business, community and policy. 

More information:

more details
The Herald Property Awards for Scotland 2017
The Herald Property Awards for Scotland honours the achievements of Scotland’s most innovative and successful house builders, developers and registered social landlords.

Since their inception in 2007, the awards have gained the respect and support of the new build industry as a result of the thorough judging process, and the high calibre awards evening which celebrates the winners and nominees in a range of categories.

As publisher of Scotland’s most comprehensive property guide, Scotland’s Homes, The Herald has a unique understanding of the new build market and there is a wide range of categories to ensure that all styles of properties and developments are recognised, from bespoke luxury homes to innovative social housing developments, from practical family homes to sympathetic renovations.

The award for Best Regeneration Project will be sponsored by Scotland’s Towns Partnership. On the launch of the HPAs 2017,  Phil Prentice, STP Chief Officer, said: “Scotland is a nation of towns and our future social and economic success will depend heavily on how we invest, nurture, innovate, support, repurpose and regenerate our towns. Scotland’s Towns Partnership is pleased to be working with The Herald again in 2017 to showcase the best regeneration projects taking place across the country.”

“There is so much regeneration progress being made across Scotland's towns and cities. Places like Inverness, Paisley and Dundee are reinventing their role and function using creativity, digital, life science’s and energy as new 21st century drivers. This event highlights the best of these regeneration projects and encourages others to follow suit.”

Deadline for entries is Thursday, June 1, 2017.

For more information on how to enter the 2017 awards please contact Claire Hunter on 0141 302 7319 or email

This years black tie awards evening, bringing together figures from across the house building and development industry will take place on Thursday, September 21, 2017 at the DoubleTree by Hilton, Glasgow.

@HeraldEvents  #propertyawards

more details
Scotland's Towns Conference 2017

Visit the Scotland's Towns Conference 2017 web page

We are delighted to announce that Scotland's Towns Conference 2017 will be held on Tuesday 21 November, with Scotland's Towns Week running from 20 - 26 November. 

STC 17 will take place in Paisley Town Hall, and is being held in partnership with Renfrewshire Council and Paisley 2021. 

Further details will be announced, however we encourage you to save the date for the annual gathering for all those who support Scotland's towns.

@Scotlandstowns #STC17

Paisley 2021

Paisley's bid for UK City of Culture 2021 will use the town's unique and fascinating story to transform its future—by putting the town in the international spotlight, attracting visitors, creating jobs and using culture to make people's lives better.

The one-time global textile hub and birthplace of the Paisley Pattern is also home to stunning architecture, an internationally-significant museum collection, Glasgow Airport, University of the West of Scotland, West College Scotland, PACE Theatre Company and a thriving contemporary cultural scene.

The UK City of Culture competition is run by the UK Government. The shortlisted cities will be announced in summer 2017, and the winner at the end of the year. Find out more about our story at 

@Paisley2021 #Paisley2021

more details
Small Business Saturday

Small Business Saturday UK is a grassroots, non-commercial campaign, which highlights small business success and encourages consumers to ‘shop local’ and support small businesses in their communities.

The day itself takes place on the first Saturday in December each year, but the campaign aims to have a lasting impact on small businesses. In 2017 Small Business Saturday will take place on Saturday, December 2nd.

We want all kinds of small businesses to get involved, so know that whether you are a family business, local shop, online business, wholesaler, business service or small manufacturer, Small Business Saturday is supporting you! For all the ways you can get involved, check out the links below.

Want to support your local small businesses as a local authority? Show your support for Small Business Saturday and encourage others to get involved! For all the ways you can get involved, check out the links below:

Are you a trade body, membership organisation, BID or local business network? Show your support for Small Business Saturday and encourage others to get involved! For all the ways you can get involved, check out the links below:

Read more here. 


more details
Sponsored By …Connecting Scotland's Towns