Pailsey People's Archive

Pailsey People's Archive

Featuring oral histories, photographs and film, the Archive captures the memories of Paisley's people as they look back at the various industries which once flourished in the town.

Seedhill Footbridge

Paisley People's Archive, a not-for-profit organisation, was set up last year by community members interested in preserving the social and cultural heritage of Paisley's industries.

After consulting professional historians at the Scottish Oral History Centre, University of Strathclyde, Paisley People’s Archive made a successful funding application to the Heritage Lottery Fund and the project began in March 2013. Working with professional historians, trained volunteers use oral history methodology to generate personal memories of working life and leisure activities at the mills; the resulting oral history archive will be deposited with a local repository, and a copy will be deposited with the Scottish Oral History Centre.

The Archive is led by a dedicated volunteer Steering Committee and managed by a professional oral and social history consultant. The team is very fortunate to have commissioned the services of an experienced social historian and the creative skills and talents of a mobile website creator, a film maker and a photographer. Most importantly, the project has attracted a number of committed volunteers to conduct and digitally record interviews with people who have interesting and entertaining tales to tell. All volunteers are trained by the Scottish Oral History Centre.

This is a truly exciting project, which will create an accessible and permanent oral history of the most important aspects of Paisley's industrial and social heritage. Significantly, this project is created by a dedicated team of volunteers and professionals, with the widespread support and assistance of Paisley people, for the interest and entertainment of the wider national and international population as well as the local community.

We would be delighted to hear from individuals wishing to volunteer their time to the project, from anyone willing to contribute memories, photographs and items to the project, and from schools and community groups interested in learning more about the Archive.


Domestic Finishing Mill, North

The first phase of the Archive (2013-2014) explores personal experiences of working life in Paisley’s thread mills and we are also keen to learn more about what workers did during rest breaks and outside of work. If you have stories to share, please contact us!


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Strathclyde Oral History Centre

Working with heritage professionals from the Scottish Oral History Centre, University of Strathclyde, the Paisley People’s Archive is creating an accessible and user-friendly oral history archive of Paisley's rich industrial past.
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