Praise for water safety campaign

Published date05 July 2022
Publication titlePaisley Daily Express
William McNally, 13, died on June 5 last year after getting into trouble in the water at the Clay Pits in Linwood, part of the River Gryffe, while swimming with friends

The tragedy led to seven GPS signs being placed at potentially dangerous areas along the river as part of a drive to improve the safety of waterways in the area — one of the first actions of the Renfrewshire water safety working group.

Additionally, equipment such as a life buoy and throw lines can be found at certain spots.

A video was also released on the one-year anniversary of William's death, in which his aunts Jayne and Claire

Drennan remembered the "gentle, kind and polite" Linwood High student and talked openly about the impact of his passing.

"There's a hole been blown through us that will never, ever, be able to be fixed," Jayne said last month.

"It is just a case of trying to get through the day really, and it's been that way for a year.

"My sister has lost her son. My niece and nephew have lost their brother.

"My parents have lost their grandson and we've lost a nephew."

Councillors Alison Ann-Dowling and Audrey Doig, who both represent Linwood, put forward a motion at Thursday's full council meeting, commending William's family and the water safety working group, which was agreed unanimously.

The former said: "I think the development of this policy is an example of what this council can do when it works to its full potential — working together.

"I also want to thank everyone across Houston and Linwood, who rallied together to help bring change and safety measures. These efforts have been community led with the support of all ward councillors.

"Finally an education safety video to raise awareness of the dangers of open water swimming has been produced and I would like to emphasise that we, as a council, pay tribute and give sincere thanks to the family of...

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