VISITORS from Barrhead in Canada were welcomed into the namesake East Renfrewshire town recently by Provost Jim Fletcher. 

Partners Jeff Hankinson and Barb Philips, from the town in Alberta, travelled thousands of miles to gain an insight into the history of Barrhead as part of a tour around the UK.

Barrhead in Alberta was named after Barrhead resident James McGuire travelled to Canada from East Renfrewshire in the 1800s. It has a population of around 4,500. 

Jeff and Barb exchanged gifts and spoke at length with Provost Fletcher, reflecting on the similarities between the two towns.

Provost Fletcher said: “It is always fascinating to hear about the similarities and differences between our two great towns, so it was a real pleasure to meet Barrhead citizens Jeff and Barb. 

“The links between Barrhead in East Renfrewshire and Barrhead in Alberta have always been strong and it is my sincere hope that this will always continue to be the case. I wish Jeff and Barb and the residents of Barrhead a prosperous future.”

Provost Fletcher gifted cufflinks, a letter and a baseball cap with the East Renfrewshire Council logo on it to the pair, who had never visited Barrhead before.

To this day, there are historical artifacts referencing McGuire’s epic journey in the Barrhead and District Museum in Alberta. 

In contrast to the weather in East Renfrewshire, Barrhead in Alberta actually enjoys a humid continental climate with warm summers and cold winters. There are four distinct seasons and temperatures can reach 35C during the summer months of June, July and August.