Local News for Tuesday 29th March 2016

Horse rescued from bog
A horse which escaped from its field in Tong on Sunday afternoon had to be rescued from a bog by fire and rescue teams. Stornoway Coastguard Rescue Team were called to Tong to provide safety cover and advice for people searching for a missing horse near an area of sinking sands. After the horse was located in a bog, they remained while Scottish Fire and Rescue recovered the animal, which was described yesterday by police as ‘home, safe and well’.  Coastguard teams stood down once the horse was safely extracted and people had dispersed.

Bus link confirmed from Mallaig
A bus link for travellers using the Lochboisdale to Mallaig service has been agreed between ferry operator CalMac and Fort William based Shiel Buses. The service will provide a daily direct service between South Uist and the mainland for the first time, as the Mallaig Lochboisdale ferry service begins summer operation after a trial period of winter operation. Shiel Buses have altered the time of the morning Mallaig to Fort William service so that this now meets the vessel arriving from Lochboisdale. A brand new service will also leave Fort William in time to meet the afternoon sailing back to Lochboisdale. CalMac operations drector Drew Collier said:”We have been able to come to a agreement with Highland Council and Shiel Buses to provide public transport links to meet this new service, which will allow foot passengers from the Uists to get to Fort William and back on the same day for the first time.” Calmac also says that the summer timetable for 2016 offers improvements including increased capacity and more sailings overall. There’s now a daily direct return service between Oban-Barra with a dedicated vessel, delivering a considerable increase in capacity. The full summer timetable for all routes is available at www.calmac.co.uk
Dog-chipping free event
With micro-chipping dogs becoming a legal requuirement from April, the Dogs Trust has set up free chipping over two days at the Bridge Centre in Stornoway on Monday and Tuesday next week. Between 3 and 7pm on Monday April 4th, and 9am and 1pm on Tuesday, dog-owners can get their pets chipped free of charge. Microchipping is a simple procedure which helps reunite lost or stray pets with their owners, reducing the chance that your dog will be kept in kennels or put to sleep if it becomes lost, and saving money for the local authority. It becomes compulsory in Scotland, England and Wales on April 1st after a trial period in Northern Ireland since 2012. There’s no need to book for the Bridge Centre sessions next week, where vets and Dogs Trust representatives will carry out the procedure free of charge and without distress to your dog.