About The Ferguslie Group
Ferguslie residents are angry about the assumptions and pre-conceptions relayed by some of the media but also held by near neighbours in Paisley and the rest of Renfrewshire. The neighbourhood has had plenty of bad press over the years – Drug wars and associated murders, a community business "run by gangsters". But these were all finished more than 10 years ago. When strangers come to Ferguslie Park they are always pleasantly surprised by how attractive, safe and ordinary it is.
Ferguslie Park is often quoted as the most deprived neighbourhood in Scotland. It was ranked the worst in 2006, the 2nd most deprived in 2009, the worst in 2012 and then again in 2016. It is important that we put this into context. The few datazones in Ferguslie Park which are the "most deprived" contain only a few streets. The stigma this places on all other residents has the effect of lowering self-esteem and encouraging external pre-conceptions and discrimination. We know that the reasons for this enduring situation are complex, and the many multi-agency and area-based solutions to date have been only partly successful in reversing the situation. Multiple deprivation indices are assessed on employment, education, health and housing yet it seems to be the health and employment aspects that are proving most difficult and keeping Ferguslie Park at the bottom of the list.
Poverty is assessed against the minimum income standard and means not being able to heat your home, pay your rent, or buy the essentials for your children. Poverty wastes people’s potential. We know that the reasons for poverty are also complex. A recent study by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation has identified that long-term poor health is one of the key contributing factors and we know that previous approaches of area-based regeneration tended to focus on improvements to the physical and built environment and achieved less in terms of health and wellbeing.
The Ferguslie Group is a partnership of a charitable community controlled housing association and a Community Centre which is a charity and a social enterprise. The Group exists to continuously improve housing and achieve social impact. Our values are Compassion, Inclusion, Integrity and Professionalism. The Tannahill Centre has added Creativity and Dynamism to these. Ferguslie people want to do things for themselves and don't take kindly to being treated as an academic study or an improvement project. So our Group needs to belong to the people of Ferguslie, include, reflect and deliver their priorities.
Further information can be found as follows: