This piece is from yesterday's Buddies Briefing newsletter, which is emailed out at 6pm every Thursday. To receive our full, free St Mirren newsletter straight to your email inbox, click here.

Ricky Gillies was in the dining room when his ears pricked up at the sound of a football question on Who Wants to Be a Millionaire? -or so the story goes.

The St Mirren legend was certain he'd know the answer even before the question focussed solely on the origins of his former club.

It's 2003 and a contestant is faced with four options, Oban, Arbroath, Fort William or Paisley. The first two are thrown out but eventually, Fort William is put forward - the mind boggles...

As explained by Gillies - who I make no apology for referencing given the impact he had when I was first attending Love Street as a young supporter - in a social media post doing the rounds this week: "When the options came up he said it wasn't Arbroath or Oban and ended up taking his 50-50 lifeline.

"It came up Fort William and Paisley - and he went for Fort William. He lost the money and it served him right."

While curious about the origins of the tale - a quick Google yielded no results - Gillies' remarks serve as a reminder of the distance that can easily grow between a club and its local surroundings.

Had the Buddies Briefing been around in the previous decade then this might have been a more damning column given a somewhat larger disconnect between St Mirren and Paisley.

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Thankfully, the individualisation of club and community is long gone with clear efforts to blend town and team in recent seasons resulting in increased pride in die-hard supporters and citizens.

St Mirren have become a club with a clear goal, a defined strategy, a blueprint for success and crucially results to back it up.

With that in mind, I was thrilled to see Paisley Town Hall featured in the unveiling of the new home kit - a classy design, might I add.

The "classic reborn" trailer proved the desire from the club to follow the structure outlined in the Paisley, People, Performance strategy. While St Mirren is not only Paisley, the club is intrinsically linked with the town and that fact ought to be celebrated.

It's to the benefit of everyone - football fan or not - for the club and town to unite and help each other.

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To that end, having a front-of-shirt sponsor from a "fellow ambitious Paisley-founded organisation" could little be more fitting.

In Consilium - a contracting firm - St Mirren have a Paisley-born, based and owned company. It's a match made in heaven, especially given the connection between club and company having blossomed from a boyhood supporter to a major team backer.

For the club to be heading back into European competition with a Paisley-inspired jersey, principal sponsor from Paisley and developing ties with the town puts the community back on the map.

Perhaps it's time for the Paisley coat-of-arms to be updated; "Lord, let Paisley [and St Mirren] flourish..."

Oh, and if it means the end of hapless quizzers uprooting the origins of the club some 100 miles north, well, then that'd be another bonus.


Stephen Robinson hasn't wasted any time in building out his squad ahead of the Conference League qualifiers next month.

Already, Jaden Brown, Roland Idowu, Ellery Balcombe, Oisin Smyth and Shaun Rooney have checked-in at the SMiSA Stadium.

Throw in James Scott's loan becoming permanent and that's six signings before July.

It appears Luke Kenny and Gallagher Lennon will also be sticking around having reported back to training earlier this week.

Realistically, that means outwith Ryan Strain and Keanu Baccus - who both faced prolonged spells out last season - the squad is in a stronger position - and there's no suggestion business is finished for the summer.

There's continuity, quality in spades and a sprinkle of new faces to avoid any staleness in the squad.

Robinson has been sharp in his signings but shrewd in transfer dealings too.


St Mirren's first five outings in the Scottish Premiership will likely provide a decent barometer for the season.

Hibs, Aberdeen, Celtic, Dundee and Kilmarnock provide a decent range of opposition in what is shaping up to be a fiercely competitive top-flight in 2024/25.

A stunning start to the season last term aided the push for a return to European competition - a quick start will be required for more of the same this time round.