Monday 30 July 2012

Stairlifts Paisley – Stairlifts Renfrewshire

Click here to find new and reconditioned stairlifts in Paisley, Renfrewshire

Castle Comfort Stairlifts offers top brand stairlifts, keen prices and fast installs for all those seeking stairlifts in  Renfrewshire and Strathclyde . And all work comes with our no-quibble guarantees and famous customer service satisfaction.
Give us a call today on 0141 278 3929  If however, you are looking for fascinating facts about the area then feel free to read on.

Stairlifts Paisley – Stairlifts Renfrewshire

As many as 400 people in Paisley already own stairlifts.  This isn’t out of the ordinary as it’s roughly 2.6 of the retired population here which is the national average.  We keep count as well and you can see our constantly updated counter here.

The truth is that for that a small percentage of us need some assistance with stairs as we age.  A stairlift is a safe way to regain access to your whole home and can make a great difference to your life.

Here at Castle Comfort Stair Lifts we like to help as many people as possible restore this mobility to their lives.  Consequently we have a good range of stairlifts supplied by all of the UK’s manufacturers plus our own brand.  Take a look here if you want to compare them.  We can advise you on which stairlift is best for you and you can see the prices online too.

So take a look around our site but if you still have questions, please telephone our local office so that we can offer your our expertise on all things stairlifts.  Just call  0141 278 3929 .

It’s all about Paisley
Paisley is famous for its paisley pattern and Paisley shawls, for its architecture, for its links to the Royal families of Scotland and England and it witches!

Paisley pattern and shawls
Where to begin?  Let’s start with the Paisley pattern and shawls.  The teardrop design of the traditional Paisley pattern originates in Persia.  It is still used in Iran, Uzbekistan and India.  In fact it was the amazing Kashmiri shawls brought back by soldiers and imported by the East India Company that inspired its recreation in Europe.

Source:Wikimedia Commons

Paisley became the British home of production and gave the pattern its modern name.  Hand weavers in Paisley in the 17th century and later using mechanical Jacquard looms were able to incorporate 5 colours at first.  This was more than other weavers who could only use two.  Later this increased to 15 colours or threads.  This was still less then the colourful originals from India but more than other producers could manage.  Famously the pattern was made into Paisley shawls like the originals from Kashmir.

By the 19th century Paisley had a thriving textile industry and in the next century big business in producing threads for sewing.

The textile history has left Paisley with quite some legacy.  First and foremost the named pattern, some great Victorian architecture in the shape of mill buildings and weaver’s cottages and street names.  You’ll find streets by the names Cotton Street, Thread Street, Shuttle Street, Silk Street, Mill Street and more in Paisley.

You can see a collection of Paisley shawls at Paisley’s Museum.

Architecture - Paisley Abbey
This abbey was first built as a priory or monastery in the 12th century at the direction of Walter FitzAlan, the first High Steward of Scotland.  It was on the site of an earlier church founded by St Mirin.  Thirteen monks came from Much Wenlock in Shropshire to set up the priory.  A century later, the priory was upgraded to an Abbey answerable only to the Pope.

It became a seat of learning too.  William Wallace, a knight and landowner, who was born nearby was educated here as a boy.

The Abbey has had a chequered history.  It was burnt down in 1307 and later rebuilt.  It suffered more problems including another fire during the 15th and 16th centuries and was restored during the 19th and early 20th century.  It is now a Church of Scotland parish church.

The Abbey has one of the finest organs in Scotland built by the French organ builder Cavaillé Coll.

Paisley’s listed buildings
·         Anchor Mills – a Grade A listed building a valuable part of the textile history of the area

·         George A Clark Town Hall, a neo classical building which was funded by the Coats family

Source:Wikimedia Commons

·         The Museum, Art Gallery and Library – the museum was built in 1871 by Sir Peter Coats part of the thread producing family.  It was designed by John Honeyman a Glasgow architect

·         Coasts Observatory – the observatory was opened in 1831 by Thomas Coats.  You can still visit this working observatory which records weather and see how it works.  They also have a planetarium where you can see the night sky

The Russell Institute
This Grade A listed building was built during the early 20th century and in a typical Art Deco style.  It was built to commemorate two brothers, Thomas and Robert Russell by their sister Agnes.  The building has a number of bronze statues including the guardian angel above the door.  The building was used as a child welfare clinic and is still used as clinic today.

Sma’ Shot Cottages
The only surviving weaver’s cottage in Shuttle Street has been refurbished to its original state so that you can see just how the hand loom weavers lived and worked.  It was built in the 1740’s and has three rooms.  Records show that two of the rooms would be living quarters and the third room for the loom.

Behind this cottage are three more built a little later and which show how the weavers lived about 70 years later.

Royal links
The Royal Stewart line descended from Walter FitzAlan the first High Steward of Scotland.  Whilst Paisley was the religious home of the Stewarts, their family residence was a castle near Renfrew.  The connections remain firmly with Paisley though as all six High Stewards are buried at Paisley Abbey.

The Royal connection came when Marjorie Bruce daughter of Robert the Bruce married the 6th High Steward.  The first Stewart king was Walter and Marjorie’s son, Robert II.  Marjorie is also buried at Paisley Abbey.

The Paisley witches
In 1697 seven people from Paisley were found guilty of witchcraft.  Six of them were hanged at Gallow Green.  The seventh took his own life before this.  They were accused of witchcraft by a girl of 11 called Christian Shaw.  The girl accused the family maid of putting a curse on her after Christian saw her steel a glass of milk.  This was only 4 years after the Salem witch trials in America.

Who do you know from Paisley?
Paisley isn’t short of a famous person or two in many walks of life.  Here are just a few with strong connections to this town.

·         Andrew Neil, journalist, ex editor of the Times and TV presenter

·         Tom Conti, TV and film actor

·         Paolo Nutini, singer/songwriter

·         David Tennant who was brought up in Paisley is a classical actor who is probably best known for his TV performance as Dr Who

·         Gerard Butler, the stage and film actor grew up in Paisley

·         The late Gerry Rafferty had a long musical career at one time playing in a band with Billy Connelly.  He is probably best known for his 1970’s hit single Baker Street

·         John Amabile, TV interior designer

·         Boxer Kevin McKintyre

·         Lex Easden, champion kick boxer

·         James and Marion Robertson who set up Robertson’s jams and preserves in Paisley.  Marion turned a glut of oranges into their first marmalade

·         Writer Suhayl Saadi was brought up in Paisley.  He first ground breaking book was Psychoraag

·         Cutting edge hairdresser Trevor Sorbie who invented the Wedge, the Chop and the Scrunch

Going back to the stairlifts, we have the right stairlift for you or your loved one and can also advise on ways to finance your purchase including reconditioned chairlifts, 0% loans and grants to ease the pressure.  Take a look at what other customers say and then call us on  0141 278 3929  so that we can seal the deal.

Friday 27 July 2012

Stairlifts Glasgow – Strathclyde Stairlifts

Click here to find new and reconditioned stairlifts in Strathclyde, Glasgow 

Castle Comfort Stairlifts offers top brand stairlifts, keen prices and fast installs for all those seeking stairlifts in Strathclyde, Glasgow. And all work comes with our no-quibble guarantees and famous customer service satisfaction.
Give us a call today on 0141 278 3929  If however, you are looking for fascinating facts about the area then feel free to read on.

Stairlifts Glasgow – Stairlifts Strathclyde

London has its boroughs, Paris its arrondissements and Glasgow like New York its districts.  As this is a second visit to the city of Glasgow for this blog, some of its many districts will be our focus.  This city is huge and is home to more than half a million people.

During the Victorian and Edwardian eras, Glasgow was known as ‘the Second City’ of the British Empire.  Since then not only has its population grown but much urban refurbishment has taken place and new towns have been built to alleviate some of the early overcrowding of this popular city.

The city stretches beyond its centre, its retail and financial districts to what some would refer to as its suburbs.  Each one has its own personality, some of them evolving as refurbishment occurs.  One thing’s for sure, this vibrant city is never dull.

West End
If you’re looking for Glasgow’s bohemian side, then look no further than West End.  Here you’ll find cafes, bars, clubs, restaurants and up market hotels.  You’ll also find the University of Glasgow and the Glasgow Botanic Gardens in the West End as well as the Scottish Exhibition and Conference Centre.

Source:Wikimedia Commons

Hillhead is one of several residential areas of West End.  It is popular with students and academics as it is close to the university and also with writers and media people.

Partick to the west of Hillside was once the residence of the Kings of Strathclyde and the Bishops of Glasgow.  Now you are more likely to meet students from the university on the streets.

East End
In the East End you’ll find ‘The Barras’ aka Glasgow Barrowland Market as well as Celtic Park home to Glasgow Celtic FC.  Originally an industrial area, many of the original tenement buildings still remain as a legacy to these times.  Now the Wellpark Brewery responsible for Tennent’s Lager is still one of the biggest local employers.

Source:Wikimedia Commons

In the East End you’ll also find the Glasgow Necropolis, an old Victorian cemetery, on a hill behind Glasgow Cathedral or High Kirk.  At the cemetery’s peak there is a statue of John Knox a Scottish Protestant reformer.

Source:Wikimedia Commons

South Side
South Side, literally south of the River Clyde is a jigsaw of small residential districts, although it does have some notable public buildings like Charles Rennie Mackintosh’s Street School Museum and House for an Art Lover too.  It is also home to Hampden Park home to Queens Park FC and the Ibrox Stadium where Glasgow Rangers FC play.

The Gorbals
One of South Side’s most infamous suburbs is The Gorbals.  Industrialisation brought people flooding to the cities where there was work and Glasgow was no exception.  The Gorbals area was already overcrowded by the 19th century.

By this time work brought immigrants from Italy and Ireland; later Jews from Eastern Europe and Russia also came.  At one time, the Gorbals housed the biggest population of Jews in Scotland.  As they improved themselves and got educated they moved out of the area.

Others weren’t so fortunate.  The area became termed as ‘slums’ because of the overcrowding and the poverty.  Although the first ‘slums’ were cleared in the 19th century, it was the 1960’s before there was a big push to improve conditions.  Unfortunately the older buildings were replaced with concrete towers which didn’t help.  There is now a clearance and refurbishment programme in place and the Gorbals is losing its poor reputation.

Alan Pinkerton who set up the Pinkerton Detective Agency in the USA came from the Gorbals.

Located just 2.5 miles south west of Glasgow’s city centre, Govan has a long history back to at least the 5th/6th centuries.  In the 1930’s it became an over-spill district for The Gorbals as slum clearance began in ernest and Govan grew as a working class area retaining some of the Gorbals’ legacy for poverty.  Govan was the centre of the Clyde’s ship building industry.  Now it is home to BAE Systems Surface Ships who were responsible for building the Royal Nay’s HMS Defender in 2009.

Sir Alex Ferguson and Kenny Dalgish both come from the Govan area.

Pollack, Pollackshaws, Pollackshields
Pollock meaning ‘people who live by a pool’ is a large district with a long history.  In recent times – 1920’s and 1950’s – the area was developed to house 30,000 from Glasgow’s crowded inner city.  It is mainly residential but it’s also where you’ll find Pollock Country Park and Crookston Castel where Mary, Queens of Scots was held.

Source:Wikimedia Commons

Pollockshaws was originally an industrial area and still has many of the typical sandstone tenement blocks.  It is home to both working and middle class families which includes and Asian community.

Comedian Frankie Boyle is famously from here.

Pollockshields is a conservation area developed by the Stirling-Maxwell family in Victorian times.  Many well-known architects had input.  Nowadays it is home to an eclectic and ethnic community.

The late songwriter Eric Woolfson who created The Alan Parsons Project grew up here.

North Glasgow
Here there is a cultural mix with affluent suburbs as well as some of the poorest.  Possilpark and Hamiltonhill fall into the latter category with high levels of unemployment and social problems.

In the more affluent Bearsden, where singer Darius calls home, part of the Roman Antonine Wall runs through the area.  Bearsden has many larger town houses and is a desirable place to live in Glasgow.

Milngavie next door to Bearsden is also a desirable area with most of its population commuting into central Glasgow for work.  It’s a real architectural treasure with a few examples of 19th century stone villas remain as does the railway station which has been well preserved.  Victorian houses have been protected in the Tannock conservation area and in the centre of Milngavie, there are Victorian shop and tenement buildings and just a few Arts & Crafts commercial buildings and large houses influenced by that style.

Castle Comfort Stair Lifts
Which ever part of Glasgow you hail from Castle Comfort Stair Lifts is here to keep you mobile.  We have 15 years in the business and can advise on any angle and you get personal service from us.  We can offer you top brands of stairlifts at competitive prices – we even have our own brand.

“We have a knowledge of the stairlifts industry greater than probably any other supplier in the U.K. Our knowledge and experience allows us, via our authorised partner agreements with large manufacturer and also smaller family stairlift firms, to source the best stairlift for your personal requirements – and get you one installed with the most favourable quotation(s).”

We are very keen to make sure that the 115,000 retired people and other who may have mobility problems get the best and fairest service if they need a stairlift.

One the decisions have been made, it takes less than half a day to install a stairlift in your home.  This means access to all areas, a regained independence and a safer journey up and down those stairs.

If you’ll like more information about prices, grants and 0% finance or anything else about stairlifts, please browse our website or give our Glasgow office a call on  0141 278 3929 .

Thursday 26 July 2012

Stairlifts Irvine – Ayrshire Stairlifts

Click here to find new and reconditioned stairlifts in Irvine, Ayshire 

Castle Comfort Stairlifts offers top brand stairlifts, keen prices and fast installs for all those seeking stairlifts in Irvine, Ayrshire . And all work comes with our no-quibble guarantees and famous customer service satisfaction.
Give us a call today on 0141 278 3929  If however, you are looking for fascinating facts about the area then feel free to read on.

Stairlifts Irvine

Irvine in North Ayrshire is a bit of an enigma.  It’s a ‘new town’, one of the 5 designed after the Second World War to ease housing in Glasgow.  But it has also been around for thousands of years!

The first settlement in Irvine dates back to Stone Age times.  The specific area of Irvine that carries this history is Dreghorn, once just a village now part of Irvine.  In fact, Dreghorn is recognised as the earliest inhabited village in Europe.

Source:Public domain

If you are currently feeling like one of the oldest inhabitants because of restricted mobility, please let Castle Comfort Stair Lifts help.  Although we’ve not been around for thousands of years, our 15 years of experience ensures we know just how to help you regain your independence.

A stairlift is a simple electronic piece of equipment that can be fitted to your staircase in just a couple of hours at the most.  But this simple addition to your home can make your life much easier and safer.

There are several types of stairlifts to fit different staircases and different size people and we have a range of them all.  As agents of all UK manufacturers including our own, we can give you a fair and unbiased quote for the one that suits you best.  We also have reconditioned stairlifts too.

One of these will not only suit your needs but also your purse!  Check out our grant advice and 0% finance options that are both on our blog, if paying outright is a little steep.  For any advice, please give our nearest office a call on  0141 278 3929 .

Going back to Dreghorn which has been occupied since those early times – that’s the longest continual residence of any place in Britain.  The remains of a 5,500 year old well have been discovered and a prehistoric site confirming its longevity.

There is an unusual parish church here, it is octagonal.  It is often referred to as the ‘Thrup’ny Bit’ after the pre-decimal three penny coin which was also that shape.  The Earl of Eglinton brought the design back from Europe and had the church constructed here in 1780.

It’s most famous resident was John Boyd Dunlop who invented the pneumatic (inflatable) tyre.  He is also one of the founders of the Dunlop Pneumatic Tyre Company.

Source:Public domain

Irvine from ancient time to Irvine New Town
Irvine has many connections with famous names throughout its history:
·         The title Lord of Irvine was inherited by King John I of Scotland around the mid 1300’s
·         Robert the Bruce secured the town and handed it down to his grandson, Robert the Steward who would later become Robert II of Scotland
·         Mary, Queen of Scots stayed at nearby Seagate castle

Source:Public domain

·         It was a favourite place of Robbie Burns; today it has two streets named after him, Burns Street and Burns Crescent.  Irvine has the oldest Burns Club in Scotland too
·         Alfred Nobel of the family who inaugurated the Nobel Prize, visited and built an explosives factory on the opposite bank of the River Irvine
·         The author and spy Daniel Defoe surveyed the harbour and port on one of his missions
·         Napoleon III stayed in Irvine when he was invited to the Edlington Tournament at the castle of the same name
·         William Booth, founder of the Salvation Army, visited Irvine on his famous motor cycle tour of Great Britain
Irvine had held a Royal Charter since the 14th century so wasn’t the usual candidate to become a ‘new town’.  Turning it into the 5th new town following East Kilbride, Glenrothes, Cumbernauld and Livingston, involved a great deal of development especially in the older parts of the town.  Irvine is the only new town on the coast.  One of the most popular changes was the development of the Irvine Beach Park on what was once industrial waste land behind the harbour.

Irvine Harbour
Once a thriving port, Irvine fell into decline in the 19th century.  This is when Glasgow, Greenock and Port Glasgow became bigger trading ports, although a shipyard on the River Irvine remained productive until after the Second World War.  After this time it was mainly involved in fit-outs including those for the Queen Elizabeth II, one of Cunard’s great ocean liners.

The port is now officially ‘closed’ as a commercial port.  It is home to the Scottish Maritime Museum where a number of vessels are on display.  MV Spartan a surviving ‘Clyde Puffer’, a small steam boat, is on display there.

Source:Public domain

You’ll also find the Boyd Tide Marker building in the harbour.  It was built at the beginning of the 20th century by harbourmaster Martin Boyd.  During daylight hours it uses a ball and pulley system to mark the tide’s status.  During the night time, lamps mark the tide level.  The building is Grade B listed.

During World War II the area housed a military watchtower with views all over the Firth of Clyde.  This watchtower had the first sighting of a German Messerschmitt 110, a German bomber, in 1941.  Irvine harbour was a prime target for Hitler because it was still a major boating area and also because ICI’s weapons development sat on the banks of the River Irvine!

Irvine Bay
The harbour and bay area are now being reclaimed and developed as a coastal park.  It will not only encourage people back to the water but also offer walks and trails along the coastal path.  The bay has great sailing waters and there are several golf courses in the area making this a desirable visitor attraction.

Irvine has already completed many of the plans for this development with others in progress or in the plans.

You’ll also find the leisure centre here – the largest in Scotland - and of course the great sandy beach overlooking the Firth of Clyde is a definite attraction.

The rich and famous of Irvine
Irvine is the home of birth for several footballers including Kris Boyd who started his career at Kilmarnock and now plays for Portland Timbers; Rangers player Kirk Broadfoot, Dunfermline Athletics’ Paul Burns, the late George Hamilton and Alex Parker, Steven Naismith and Everton player, former footballer Steve Nicol and Cardiff City player Craig Conway.

The 18th century novelist John Galt was born here and the American author Edgar Allan Poe attended Grammar School here.

Castle Comfort Stairlifts
You don’t have to be rich and famous to benefit from one of our stairlifts.  We know that about 200 of Irvine retired folk have already invested in a stairlift to make everyday living easier.  We know this because we keep count.  You can see our counter which is updated by the minute here.
You too can join the ranks of the Irvine mobile community.  Just give us a call on  0141 278 3929  – we can be there in a flash!

Tuesday 24 July 2012

Stairlifts Kilmarnock – Ayrshire Stairlifts

Click here to find new and reconditioned stairlifts in Kilmarnock,  Ayrshire 

Castle Comfort Stairlifts offers top brand stairlifts, keen prices and fast installs for all those seeking stairlifts in Kilmarnock, Ayrshire . And all work comes with our no-quibble guarantees and famous customer service satisfaction.

Give us a call today on 0141 278 3929  If however, you are looking for fascinating facts about the area then feel free to read on.

Stairlifts Kilmarnock – Stairlifts Ayrshire

It doesn’t matter where you live, if you aren’t as agile as you used to be it can be really frustrating.  Even more so when you can’t get upstairs or down for that matter.  That means some of your independence is taken away and as not all of us have the good fortune to live in a bungalow or the opportunity to move to one, getting up and down the stairs is important.

Castle Comfort Stair Lifts know from our own family’s experiences just how difficult this can be.  Which is why 15 years ago we set up our family run company to make sure other families could receive the help and advice they need when this happens.  We have local offices all around the country so that no one need find themselves in this predicament.

The nearest office to Kilmarnock in Ayrshire is Glasgow some 22 miles away.  Close enough to visit you in your home to see how we can help.  Or just offer the advice at the end of a telephone.

One thing’s for sure we should be able to set you up with the sort of stairlift that’s right for you and in record time.  Installations usually take no longer than half a day.  Just think you could be riding the stairway chariot before you know it.

Let us assess your house to see whether a straight or curved stairlift is right for you.  Or if you need a more specialist means of transport we have perch lifts for those of you who can’t bend your knees and wider ones which will take additional weight.  No one need be left stranded.

We supply all makes and you can get an idea of prices here.  So people of Kilmarnock, once you’ve had a good look round our website, please give us a call if you need more information on  0141 278 3929 .

Kilmarnock - Did you knows?
·         that Kilmarnock is famous for being the place that published the first collection of poems by Robbie Burns?

·         that Kilmarnock has the largest Burns monument?

·         that it is the home of Johnnie Walker Whisky?

·         that it is also home to the second oldest Scottish football club Kilmarnock FC?

·         that it was voted Scotland’s Friendliest Shopping town in 2006?

·         that Alexander Fleming who discovered penicillin attended Kilmarnock Academy?

·         that the Titanic’s carpets were woven in Kilmarnock?

Kilmarnock and Johnnie Walker
We know that Scotland is the home of whisky production, but did you know that Kilmarnock is the home to the brand Johnnie Walker?  Well Johnnie Walker whisky has a long association with Kilmarnock.  This whisky was originally known as Kilmarnock whisky and was first sold by John ‘Johnnie’ Walker in is grocery store.  When Walker died in 1857 his son Alexander Walker inherited the shop and the whisky!  It was Alexander and his son Alexander II who established it as a popular brand.  Prior to 1860 blended whiskies weren’t legal so in 1865 Alexander, John’s son, produced their first blend, Walker’s Old Highland.

In 1870 Alexander introduced the iconic square bottle for purely practical reasons – less bottles got broken and you could pack more into the same space!  The angled label was further developed by John’s grandsons George and Alexander II, increasing the size of the text and introducing the colour names i.e. Red Label.  By 1908 the company’s MD James Stevenson instigated a mini-rebranding renaming the whisky, Johnnie Walker Whisky and introducing the slogan ‘Born in 1820 – Still going strong!’ alongside the Striding Man logo.  The Striding Man is said to have a likeness to the original John Walker in his traditional clothes.

Johnnie Walker label colours are used to denote the different types of whisky and how and when they are used.  The Blue Label for instance is ‘rare and expensive’ and intended for special occasions.

The company is now owned by Diageo plc who also produces Smirnoff, Baileys, Guinness and Jose Cuervo Tequila.  In 2011 they closed the blending and bottling plant in Kilmarnock despite protests and campaigns to stop them.  Johnnie Walker production has moved to one of their other Scottish sites.

Johnnie Walker remains the world’s best selling whisky.  The story is told brilliantly in the short promotional film starring Scottish actor Robert Carlyle called The Man who Walked Around the World.

Johnnie Walker has made many appearances in popular culture further confirming its subliminal message:
·         Tom Hanks as Walter Fielding is drinking Red Label in The Money Pit

·         Jack Donaghy played by Alec Baldwin is often seen enjoying it in the sitcom 30 Rock

·         It’s referred to in the Lynard Skynard song Poison whisky

·         Tom Waits sang about it in Bad Liver (and a Broken Heart)

·         Another American, George Thorogood, a blues singer, mentions ‘me and my pal Johnnie Walker and his brothers Black and Red’ in the song I Drink Alone

·         In a West Wing episode, Leo McGarry (John Spencer) mentions Johnnie Walker Blue

This just shows how important Johnnie Walker was to the town of Kilmarnock.  Losing their blending and bottling plant meant as much as the job losses.  Though no one can take away the history.

Kilmarnock FC and the Killie Pie
Something else that the locals are proud of is their local football club ‘Killie’ which plays in the Scottish Premier League.  Another famous connection is the Killie Pie made by local bakers, Brownings and sold at their home games at Rugby Park.  The Killie Pie is made from steak unlike the more traditional football game snack, Scotch Pie which is traditionally made from minced mutton.  They look the same but taste very different.  This pie has also made a name for Brownings!

Kilmarnock and Robbie Burns
As we mentioned earlier Robbie had his first collection of poems published in Kilmarnock by John Wilson.  This volume is referred to as the Kilmarnock Edition and can be seen at Dean Castle.

In the 19th century money was collected and used to build a monument to Scotland’s national bard.  The site of the monument which has been restored and cleaned after much of it was destroyed by fire in 2004.  Here, there is a family and local history facility complete with a research room and archive storage.  This facility allows work to take place on old, delicate documents in a climate controlled environment.  Did you know you can spend the day researching your family history here?

Dean Castle
Nearby Dean Castle was built in the 14th and 15th centuries by the Boyd family.  Its historical connections are well known:
·         Robert the Bruce gave the land to the Boyds

·         The sister of James III married Boyd’s sister

·         Bonnie Prince Charlie, the 4th Earl of Kilmarnock and Robbie Burns all had connections to the Castle

In the 1970’s the family gifted the castle to the people of Kilmarnock and it was opened to the public.

Today you can see the Robert Burns Kilmarnock Edition of his poetry collection in the Banqueting Hall; a collection of arms and armour gifted with the castle in the Great Hall and musical instruments of the past in the Solar in the Keep.

There is a plaque here dedicated to those who lost their lives in the 9/11 attacks.  It was presented by the Robert Burns World Federation and has a quote from the Bard:
Dedicated to the victims of terrorism in the USA on 11 September 2001 "Man’s Inhumanity to man Makes countless thousands mourn!"  Robert Burns (1759 – 1796)

Dean Castle Park in the surrounding countryside has many trails and walks through the countryside and an education programme to help visitors protect what they see.

Getting around
For local residents of the town of Kilmarnock with its great histories and iconic links, Castle Comfort Stair Lifts just want to remind you that we are here to help.  If you can’t get around like you used to, then give us a call to discuss the installation of one of our best aids, a stairlift.  Just give us a call on  0141 278 3929.

Saturday 21 July 2012

All about Arthritis

All about arthritis

Over time, many people start to feel pain and stiffness in the body. Sometimes they hurt in their hands, knees or shoulders and they find it hard to move, as their joints may become swollen. These people may have "arthritis."

Arthritis can be caused by inflammation of the tissue lining the joints. Signs of inflammation include redness, heat, pain and swelling. These problems indicate that something is wrong. Joints are where two bones meet, such as the elbow or knee, and with the passage of time, in some types of arthritis, (but not all) these joints can be severely affected.

The term "arthritis" includes all rheumatic diseases in which the process triggers inflammation. If the intensity of inflammation is high and continuous we can find other general alterations to the condition such as fever, tiredness, loss of appetite and weight loss.

If arthritis affects a single joint we talk about monoarthritis.. If the suffering is found in less than four we are facing an oligarthritis and if there are more affected joints we designate it as polyarthritis. In any case the process may be migratory or additive, acute, chronic or intermittent. There are multiple causes that can cause the presence of arthritis for someone, and some of these causes are as follows:-
 A) Some infections such as bacteria and viruses.  These are usually rarer than agents such as fungi or parasites.
 B) Crystals deposited in organs and mainly in joints.
 C) Genetic disorders
 D) autoimmune diseases
 E) other unusual groups of cases of arthritis that occur in relation to cancer or diseases of the endocrine glands (thyroid).

Many people confuse the difference between arthritis and arthrosis. The first is chronic inflammation of multiple joints, large or small, while osteoarthritis is the wearing of the cartilage of one or more joints. Inflammatory joint pain usually takes up the day to day life of the patient, and although it gets worse with exercise and activity, pain can also be there when resting and even peak in intensity at night. Discomfort may be accompanied by fever, tiredness and fatigue. All these symptoms are not observed in arthrosis.

Atrophy in the muscles around the inflamed joint, especially on hands and knees, is also very characteristic in the early appearance of arthritis. Arthrosis, except in the joints of the knuckles and knees, doesn't usually alter the axis of the joint. Rheumatoid arthritis commonly causes deviations and deformations in the joints. Arthrosis may not show symptoms at the start and be detected by radiographic study. These symptoms always correspond to the affected joint. The beginning of arthritis is insidious and instead presents both articular and extra articular symptoms (subcutaneous nodules, anemia and eye, pulmonary, renal or cardiac disorders ). Pain in the large and small joints of the body is the most common symptoms in rheumatoid arthritis. The most frequently injured joints are the wrists, knuckles, finger joints, the elbows, shoulders, hips, knees, ankles and toes. Inflammation though maintained and controlled, can end up damaging the bones, ligaments and tendons that are around the area, which can lead to progressive deformity of the joints and loss of ability to do some tasks of daily living.

Arthritis Stair Climbing - Are Stairs Good for Arthritis?

For the arthritis sufferer everyday tasks like climbing up and down stairs can be painful and difficult.  It is for this reason that a stairlift is often installed to make a difficult and possibly dangerous climb up a staircase into an easy automated glide to the top instead.
According to the American Arthritis Society in their practical tips series:-
Every stair step puts strain on the knee. If you can use an elevator instead of taking the stairs, always take the elevator, even if you travel just one floor or if it means waiting a few minutes. With osteoarthritis of the knee, avoid stairs whenever possible.
 The main symptoms of arthritis are:
 · In hands it typically involves the small joints of the fingers and swelling of the wrists. Over time and in the absence of adequate treatment, the wrist joint loses mobility. Over the years deformities can occur, especially in more serious cases, such as deviation of the fingers. In some patients this can cause tendon ruptures, causing difficulty to extend or straighten the little finger and sometimes the middle and ring finger.
 · In the elbows: they are frequently affected in rheumatoid arthritis, causing deep pain in bending and straightening it. · On the shoulders: patients often complain of shoulder pain and limitation for activities of daily living such as dressing, washing the back and raising the arms to reach objects.
 · In the hips: it appears in severe forms of the disease, with pain in the groin, leading to difficulty in walking, rising from a chair and of course, up and down stairs.
 · The knees are affected most often and sometimes is the only manifestation of the start of the disease. Chronic inflammation may lead to difficulty in stretching entirely and muscle atrophy of the thigh. There may be a limp or difficulty in walking.
 · Joints of the foot: patients often suffer this pain in that area, and the feeling of stones or crystals, especially in the morning, sometimes even going limp and feeling uncomfortable wearing their shoes. The toes may be deformed in the long run, for example causing a bunion and in advanced stages the deformation of the heel and flat part of the foot may be the outcome.
 · Joints of the cervical spine: the most common symptoms of this dislocation is neck pain just in the back of the head. This pain often affects some patients more so in the morning, improving as the day progresses. This pain can be accompanied by leg weakness and urinary problems which suggests that the luxation may be severe.
 · Signs outside the joints: although the fundamental location of lesions caused by rheumatoid arthritis is in the synovial membrane of joints, sometimes it can alter other structures. Extra-articular manifestations are due to rheumatoid arthritis but affect different parts of the body than the joints.
The stairlifts are suitable for the elderly, since they are more likely to suffer from arthritis and other conditions that alter their movement. There are many diseases that make it difficult for the elderly to use the stairs, thus, an elder would greatly benefit from a stairlift. The elimination of the physical struggles with conventional stairs by using a stairlift can change the life of an elderly person. Castle Comfort Stairlifts offers top brands, competitive prices and fast installs for those seeking help with problems of mobility. We adapt to any particular case. Call us now and ask us for advice on 0800 007 6959 as we will be happy to provide our help.  
Click here to find new and reconditioned stairlifts in your area or call the local number below for the office nearest to you.

City NamePhone Number
Aberdeen01224 421214
Belfast02890 538653
Birmingham0121 371 0123
Bournemouth01202 355466
Braintree01376 396015
Brighton01273 796030
Bristol01179 059177
Burnley01282 899809
Cardiff02920 501790
Cork021 236 3222
Coventry02476 249100
Derby01332 561002
Dublin01 513 3658
Edinburgh0131 242 0046
Glasgow0141 278 3929
Gloucester01452 899902
Hull01482 407016
Ipswich01473 209069
Las Palmas928 514838
Leicester0116 202 9866
Lincoln01522 899769
Liverpool0151 676 2727
London0207 717 9797
Luton01582 447766
Macclesfield01625 886599
Madrid91 562 28 50
Maidstone01622 616046
Manchester0161 452 3636
Newcastle0191 644 0366
Northampton01604 269919
Nottingham0115 971 7012
Oxford01865 477004
Plymouth01752 648138
Portsmouth02392 395095
Sheffield0114 291 9000
Shrewsbury01743 493039
Southampton023 8124 3046
Stafford01785 318701
Stoke-on-Trent01782 630999
Swansea01792 359212
West Country01395 349198
Wolverhampton/Walsall01902 489422
York01904 820776

Castle Comfort Stairlifts offers top brand stairlifts, keen prices and fast installs for all those seeking stairlifts. And all work comes with our no-quibble guarantees and famous customer service satisfaction.
Give us a call today on 0800 007 6959 

What is accessibility?

What is accessibility?

By accessibility we mean the characteristics, transport or means of communication that make it possible for someone to reach something in their environment, whether that is regarding the aspects of a physical space such as a home or accessibility in terms of, for example, access to the internet for people with special needs.

Good accessibility is that which exists but goes unnoticed for the majority of people except for people with serious problems in their mobility and/ or with sensory, visual and /or auditory limitations.

To carry out the design of spaces, elements, transport and products around us we have to take into account these features in order to improve the quality life of everybody. If we want to improve the accessibility in public and personal environments, buildings, transport and in existing media we´ll have to remove some of the architectural barriers that still exist in them. The architectural barriers are those obstacles, impediments or physical hindrances that limit or prevent freedom of movement and autonomy of individuals. They can be classified as: Urbanistic architectural barriers: which are those located on roads and open spaces for public use, and these can be resolved through urban accessibility.

Architectural barriers in public or private buildings: are those who are inside buildings, and these can be resolved by building accessibility.

Architectural barriers in transport: are those found in transportation and can be resolved by the different means of transport accessibility.

Communication barriers: any impediment to the expression and reception of messages through the media whether or not mass media. They can be resolved by communication accessibility.

But why must we remove architectural barriers or sensory impairments? Isn’t it too expensive?

The answer is because we can improve our quality of life. It´s expensive only in some cases like rebuilding in an existing space in which we meet space limitations. So all the actions of new construction must incorporate accessibility in all its forms and in this manner it´ll go unnoticed and will be included in new projects and help everyone individually; i.e. if a visually impaired person needs a label with sufficient contrast, it is clear that anyone with an index of normal vision can identify it more clearly too.

The disabled are those who have temporarily or permanently limited the ability to move on, while a person with limitations is one that has temporarily or permanently limited the ability to use the medium or relate to it.

We can establish three large groups of people with physical and / or sensory impairments:
             1) Ambulant disabled people: are those that execute certain movements with difficulty, either with or without the help of braces, canes, etc.  Among them are: old people with degradation of the physical and mental capacity, in plaster, amputees, pregnant, people with heart or respiratory  failures ..etc..

2       2) Wheelchair users:  they are those who require a wheelchair even to carry out their activities, either independently or with third parties. Among them are: paraplegics with paralysis of the lower body including the lower extremities, or both upper and lower body including legs and arms; quadriplegics, with paralysis of both upper and lower body, including legs and arms.; hemiplegics, amputees,  unable to walk, affected major diseases (polio, sclerosis, etc..) or malformations.
The main problems that affect them are: Inability to overcome abrupt slopes and stairs, inability to overcome steep gradients, danger of falling over or slipping. Due to restrictions in their ability with visual and manual reach, large spaces to turn or door openings require adaptation.

3      3) People with reduced sensory abilities that have perceptual difficulties due to a limitation of their sensory abilities, mainly visual or hearing. Among them are: blind, amblyopic, hard of hearing , deaf and in general all kinds of people with impaired vision., and hearing disorders.

In our society there live many hundreds of people with physical disabilities, illnesses, other disabilities or with large barriers that limit their chances.  This also affects their right to work, leisure and culture, so sometimes the disabled are those who we inadvertently deny the possibility of a decent life, to which they are entitled.

Stairlifts help to make life easy.
If you have accessibility difficulties let us help. Castle Comfort Stair Lifts have been supplying Stairlifts throughout the whole of England for 15 years and can advise you on the best stairlift for you and your staircase. We supply all the major makes so can truly offer you an unbiased opinion.

Click here to find new and reconditioned stairlifts in your area

Castle Comfort Stairlifts offers top brand stairlifts, keen prices and fast installs for all those seeking stairlifts in . And all work comes with our no-quibble guarantees and famous customer service satisfaction.
CALL 0800 007 6959 TODAY!

Thursday 19 July 2012

Stairlifts Ayr – Ayrshire Stairlifts

 Click here to find new and reconditioned stairlifts in Ayr, Ayrshire 

Castle Comfort Stairlifts offers top brand stairlifts, keen prices and fast installs for all those seeking stairlifts in Ayr, Ayrshire . And all work comes with our no-quibble guarantees and famous customer service satisfaction.
Give us a call today on 0141 278 3929  If however, you are looking for fascinating facts about the area then feel free to read on.

Stairlifts Ayr – Stairlifts Ayrshire

Ayr, the County town of Ayrshire has Royal Charter status and has done so since the 13th century.  The very first meeting of the Scottish Parliament was in Ayr at the beginning of the 14th century under Robert the Bruce.

Cromwell also used the town as one of his headquarters.  He even built walls around some areas of the town and some of these can still be seen today.

Ayr which sits on the Firth of Clyde is 50 miles north of Stranraer on the west coast of Scotland.  It is also right next door to Prestwick which is renowned for its golf.


If you struggle to get to the Tee much less get up and down the stairs, maybe you need some Castle Comfort TLC.  We supply and install a whole range of stairlifts from all of the UK’s manufacturers, so we have something for everyone.  You don’t need to worry about the cost either as we can point you in the direction of grant applications or 0% finance if you need one right away.

If this has caught your interest and you’d like to know more, please give our local office a call on  0141 278 3929 .

In the meantime we already know that around 230 people in Ayr own stairlifts.  That’s just over 2.5% of its retired population.  We know because we keep count – you can check out the ever-changing counter here.  We know how important it is for people with mobility problems to recapture their independence and confidence.

Ayr’s industrial history
Sitting on the River Ayr has always been a plus for this town especially since the industrial revolution.  Ayr’s economy really got a boost during the 19th century when ship building was prevalent.  By the 1960’s there was no more building and even repairs had stopped.  However the northern side of the harbour at Ayr still acts as a commercial port.  Its main trade is the export of coal.

There also used to be a thriving fish export business operating here for white fish and salmon caught locally.  The production of carpets and other textiles as well as agricultural products was also a part of Ayr’s industry until the 1970’s.

Now its main industry is tourism which started in the 1840’s when the rail links made it possible.  Visitors still come to Ayr for its great sandy beaches today.

Rabbie Burns
The country’s famous bard, Robbie or Rabbie Burns was born in Alloway which is on the outskirts of Ayr.  Visitors can see the cottage he was born in suitably ‘plaque-d’ and visit the nearby Robert Burns Birthplace Museum.

You can take a Rabbie Burn’s 2 hour walking tour from here.  It will take you around Alloway visiting some of the landmarks like the Brig o’ Doon and the Auld Kirk and hear his famous tale about Tam o’ Shanter.

Or you can visit some of the local places that he immortalised in his many poems.  This is a day trip which covers a distance of 50 miles.

Other celebrated Ayr-ians!
·         Botanist William D Brackenridge who emigrated to the USA was originally born in Ayr

·         Minister and religious writer William Dalrymple was born here in 1723

·         In 1809 another of Ayr’s famous sons who had emigrated to America drew the first geological map of the USA; he also became the president of the American Geological Society

·         The engineer John Loudon McAdam who invented tarmacadam was born here

·         Mike Scott, lead singer of the Waterboys grew up in Ayr

·         As did Stuart Murdoch of 90’s band Belle & Sebastian

Source:Public domain
·         Comedienne Karen Dunbar is from here too

Culzean Castle
A few miles south of Ayr right on the coast sits Culzean Castle.  It was rebuilt by Robert Adams to replace a more basic castle and has a circular tower with views of the sea and an oval staircase.  It was commissioned by the 10th Earl of Cassilis.  After the Second World War, President Eisenhower of the USA was ‘given’ the top floor apartment in honour of his services to the war.  The property is now owned by the National Trust but you can stay in the Eisenhower suite.


Take a look around the 600 acres of grounds including the gardens, the cliff walk and the beaches to get a real feel for the size of this great castle.

Sporting town
Ayr’s racecourse has been running races since 1907.  With the largest capacity for horse racing in Scotland it hosts flat and National Hunt races.

Professional Ice Hockey has strong ties to the town.  The last team to play in the British Super league was last active in 2002.  Unfortunately ice hockey is now only played at recreational level in the town by the Ayr Jets and the Ayr Lions.  This is partly due to facilities that don’t comply with professional standards.

Ayr is represented in several other sports: football Ayr United FC, rugby by Ayr RFC, and also has a curling club, a sport which originated in medieval Scotland.

‘Keen Ice’
With a stairlift just like a ‘keen’ or ‘fast ice’ as any curling fan will know, you can get to the top or bottom in no time.

If you’ve been looking into the possibility of getting a stairlift to make life easier, Castle Comfort Stairlifts can certainly help.  As we said we have a stairlift just right for everyone’s needs from straight, curved and even perch stairlifts for those with knees that won’t bend.  We even have bariatric lifts which will accommodate more weight than others.

Check out our prices and remember that we also do reconditioned lifts.  One thing that our customers always confirm is what a difference a stairlift makes to their lives.  Let us help you.  Please give us a call on  0141 278 3929  to get the ball – or the puck - rolling.

Monday 16 July 2012

Stairlifts Airdrie – Lanarkshire Stairlifts

Click here to find new and reconditioned stairlifts in Airdrie, Lanarkshire 

                                                                                                            Castle Comfort Stairlifts offers top brand stairlifts, keen prices and fast installs for all those seeking stairlifts in Aidrie, Lanarkshire . And all work comes with our no-quibble guarantees and famous customer service satisfaction.
Give us a call today on 0141 278 3929  If however, you are looking for fascinating facts about the area then feel free to read on.

Stairlifts Airdrie – Stairlifts Lanarkshire

Airdrie forms part of the Monklands area with Coatbridge.  Airdire is just 12 miles from Glasgow and still acts as a commuter town for this city.  It also has a number of satellite villages of its own.  These include Airdriehill, the old mining village of Chapelhill, Calderbank where the first iron boat, Vulcan was ‘born’, Caldercruix known for its mining and papermaking, Greengairs, Longriggend, Upperton and Wattston.

Monklands was named after the Cistercian monks who founded the New Battle Abbey and farmed the local land back in the 12th century.

Airdrie is built on a plateau some 400 feet above sea level.  This is relevant as the monks were good at building roads – little more than tracks in those days.  In fact the original main road between Glasgow and Edinburgh ran through Airdrie.  Roads on high ground were popular as they were less boggy and more open so travellers weren’t so prone to ambush by robbers.  They became known as ‘the high way’ and later the King’s Highway.  Airdrie’s highway was where its first houses were built too.

Like its close neighbour Coatbridge many of Airdrie’s ancestors were Irish immigrants who came over to work in the mines.

Keeping mobile in Airdrie
Castle Comfort Stair Lifts can’t make similar claims but they can make sure you can still reach all parts of your home.  We have been in the stairlift business for 15 years supporting individuals and families who need mobility help to climb the stairs.

With a slightly smaller population than Coatbridge, Airdrie also has a smaller retired population and slightly less stairlift owners, around 180 to be exact.  Check out our website homepage to see our scrolling counter which records stairlifts as they are installed!

With so many years’ experience and a great 24/7 after service, we can advise you about the make and sort of stairlift which will suit you.  But first, why not check out what other owners have said about us and compare prices and the benefits of the many different types.  If you still have questions, please give our local office a call on 0141 278 3929.

Football city
Airdrie’s professional football club is Airdrie United FC and are currently managed by Jimmy Boyle who started his career playing for Airdrie United.  They are also known as the Airdrieonians and the Diamonds due to the red diamond on their white shirts.

Airdrie has produced more footballers than you can throw a stick at!  These include:
·         Ex goalkeeper John Armstrong who played for Nottingham Forest, Portsmouth and Southport during his playing career

·         Scottish player Barry Bannan currently playing for Aston Villa

Source:Wikimedia Commons

·         The late George Brown who played for a number of Scottish clubs and ended his career playing for Poole Town in the south of England

·         Jackie Campbell who played for Partick Thistle

·         Sandy Clark started out playing for his home team before West Ham, Rangers and Hearts.  He currently manages Queen of the South

·         The retired Bobby Cumming emigrated to America after a football career playing most notably for Lincoln City

·         The late Torrence Gillick was also born in Airdrie

·         The late Dick Hendrie also played for his home team as well as Queens Park

·         Drew Jarvie now retired also played for the Diamonds

·         Brian McClair who was born in nearby Bellshill is now Director of Man U’s Youth Academy

Source:Wikimedia Commons

·         John McGregor now retired played for Queens Park, Liverpool and Rangers

·         Ian McMillan played and later managed Airdrie United

·         The late Alan Morton grew up in Airdrie; he was one of the ‘Wembley Wizards’, the Scotland team that defeated England 5-1 in 1928

·         Gardner Speirs currently managers Queens Park after a playing career

·         Martin Woods is currently playing for Doncaster Rovers

·         Local boy Paul McGowan is signed to St Mirren

Source:Wikimedia Commons

·         Whilst John Rankin is with Dundee United

Without even naming all the players who were born in Airdrie over the years, we wonder if this is a record for one town?

As well as Airdrie’s professional club they have several teams playing in amateur leagues.  They also have a Rugby Union Team, Waysiders RFC, as wells as 6 local bowling clubs!

History of the town
Airdrie is thought to have been given its name in reference to its location, from the Gaelic that means ‘high hill pasture’.  It sits on what is known as the Hog’s Back, a high land ridge that runs from East to West.

Modern Airdrie is considered to have been founded in the 17th century by Sir Robert Hamilton who was Laird of Airdrie House which unfortunately no longer exists.  Monklands Hospital stands on its former site.

Already a thriving market town, the lands around Airdrie grew flax so the town grew up as a weaving community; then by the end of the 18th century coal had been discovered and coal mining became important to Airdrie too.

Airdrie’s Public Observatory
At the end of the 19th century, Airdrie’s Public Observatory was built in the library.  This observatory is one of only 4 that exist in the UK; it is the second oldest.  The original telescope was a 3inch refracting one donated by Glaswegian Dr Thomas Reid.  Although this telescope is no longer in use, you can still see it at the observatory.

The main telescope now is the Cooke, a 6 inch refracting one which can track the stars across the sky.  The telescope provides magnification up to 450 times.  Even this telescope is believed to be more than 100 years old.  The observatory has a number of small reflector telescopes too.

Source:Wikimedia Commons

Other famous people from Airdrie
·         The late actor Ian Bannen was born in Airdrie.  After an Academy Award and several BAFTA nominations, he was honoured with a BAFTA Lifetime Achievement Award in 1996

·         Actor Ross Davidson who played Andy O’Brien in Eastenders in the 1980’s.  He died from a brain tumour in 2006

Source:Wikimedia Commons

·         Dee Hepburn also came from Airdrie; she presented it’s a Knockout and appeared in Crossroads amongst other things

·         Canadian racing driver Bill Adam was born here

·         Hugh de Largie was one of the founding members of the Australian Senate in the early 20th century, was born in Airdrie

·         Two soldiers who were awarded the Victoria Cross came from here: David Ross Lauder and John O’Neill

There’s no doubt that Airdrie has a long line of famous personalities.  But locals no matter whether they are ‘known’ or not deserve to retain their independence wherever possible.  That’s why Castle Comfort Stair Lifts go to no end of trouble to make sure you know about the services we offer.

If you or a loved one in the area needs some mobility help, we’re here to assist.  We have a wide range of stair or chairlifts to accommodate everyone.  Take a look at some of our different types: straight, curved and perch for those who have trouble bending their knees.  Remember that we also have reconditioned ones too.

If you’d like to make the purchase easier, take a look at the grants on offer or consider a 0% finance deal.  If we haven’t answered all of your questions here or on our website, please give our local office a call on  0141 278 3929 .  Our team will be more than pleased to help you.