Local News for Monday 23rd May 2016

Women’s Cancer Challenge blockbuster
Torrential rain failed to dampen high spirits at the tenth annual Women’s Cancer Challenge on Saturday, with a record turnout and 601 finishers at the line. This year’s winner, in a course record time of 18 minutes and 30 seconds, was Scottish national athlete Eilidh Mackenzie, who won the first Challenge 10 years ago while still a school pupil, a result that organisers Tony and Kirsty Wade said was ‘fitting’.  At least seven women had entered all ten of the events to date. The race has raised money for the Lewis Branch of Cancer Research UK every year since it started, and could this year come close to the £100,000 mark in overall funds raised by runners, sponsors and supporters. Among pledges and help on the day, Tescos donated support staff, water and bananas for the runners, Grillburger gave 1000 bottles of water and Fergusons Heating Systems pledged a £1 donation for every runner. Tony Wade said: “It was a day of stories, some of which we will never know, but there were many there who had their own challenges. The starting whistle was blown by members of the Hebridean Mens Cancer Group, and we heard that one of the finishers was a nurse who came straight from a night-shift to run. We also know that there were people running with us in Aberdeen, Donegal, Iberia and  Rhode Island - because they could not join us in person.“

Ferry passenger airlifted
A man was taken off the MV Loch Seaforth by helicopter on Sunday afternoon after suffering a cardiac arrest at 3pm, during the crossing to Ullapool. He was taken to Stornoway and onward by ambulance to Western Isles Hospital, where he is receiving treatment.

Police news
A woman was detained by police at 5pm on Saturday when she was detected taking good without paying from a town centre store. She was released with a formal recorded police warning.

And a man was arrested for disorder in Stornoway town centre in the early hours of Sunday morning. He was also released with a recorded police warning.

Big cruise week
It’s set to be a busy week at Stornoway harbour as a succession of cruise ships berth, bringing passengers for a memorable day in the islands. Last week saw the arrival of three unscheduled cruise visitors, bumping up the year’s  cruise visit numbers. Yesterday morning the Zuiderdam passed the islands to the east, giving onlookers a view of a vessel accommodating 2,500 passengers – she visited the Shiant Islands on her way to Greenock yesterday.  Also visiting was the Dutch sail-training ship Morgenster, a two-masted square-rigged brig, which anchored off Point overnight. Today sees the mega-yacht Le Austral in port, an unusually-shaped small cruise vessel carrying just 250 passengers in luxury. Other ships arriving this week also including Silver Explorer, Astoria, Hebridean Princess and Corinthian, which also called in on Saturday.
Award listing for Uist schools
Two Western Isles schools have beaten off stiff competition from across
Scotland to be selected as finalists at this year's Scottish Education Awards. Iochdar and Daliburgh schools have been working together to develop Gaelic school status in South Uist and have been shortlisted for the Gaelic Education Award. Pupils organised a drama festival with the aim of raising the profile of Gaelic, and developed their own leadership skills and knowledge of the Gaelic
language at the same time. They’ll attend an awards ceremony in Glasgow on June 8th, where the winners will be announced.
There was disappointment for Lewis Camanachd, who heard on Friday that their Saturday home game was postponed, as opponents Inverness were unable to raise a team. The team now look to next week’s clash with Caberfeidh for a good workout on the pitch. Development work carried on with young players, as Inverness-based Camanachd  Association coach Katie Drain put young island players through their paces with sessions through the islands. Katie and commented afterwards: “Harris was fantastic, the kids were great and the scenery was not bad either!”
Iochdar Saints performed strongly against Westside in Saturday’s Highland Amateur Cupfirst round match, to win 2-1 and go through to the second round and an away match against Wick on June 4th. Point fought a tough battle against Ness at Garrabost on Friday, the match remaining 1-all after extra time, but Point winning 7-6 on penalties and securing their passage to a match against Keiss at Avoch on June 4th.

In the Lewis and Harris league on Friday Lochs beat Carloway 1-3. Tonight’s matches see United versus Back in Stornoway, and Westside welcoming Stornoway Athletic. Kick-off for both matches is at 7pm.