Local News for Friday 7th July 2017
‘Where are the crofters?’ – MSP
Scottish Labour’s rural economy spokesperson Rhoda Grant, who is also MSP for the Highlands and Islands, has criticised a new National Council of Rural Advisors, unveiled by the Scottish Government, because there is no Highland or Island, or crofting representation on the Council. Mrs Grant has written to the Cabinet Secretary Fergus Ewing, to express her concerns. She said: "I am deeply worried that this means the concerns of those working on our most challenging land in the Highlands and Islands will be overlooked, once again. Too often have we seen support skewed away from the area that most need it, and this Council does not include the expert knowledge to change that.”
Read more: Local News for Friday 7th July 2017
Local News for Monday 3rd July 2017
Heroes return from Games
An elated party of Western Isles athletes landed at Stornoway airport on Saturday afternoon, to a heroes’ welcome from family, friends and supporters. Lewis Pipe Band turned out in full to serenade the returning champions, with joyous and sometimes chaotic scenes as last team pictures were taken. The Western Isles squad had their best-ever games for gold medals, with 10 between swimmer Kara Hanlon, cycling sisters Kerry and Kirsty MacPhee, Kathryn Offer in the pool and Heather Mackinnon in the triple jump. Eve Carrington’s silver in the shot put, with two more silvers for Kirsty MacPhee and a bronze for Kathryn Offer, made up the total of 14 medals, putting the Western Isles at seventh place out of 23 competing islands. Kerry MacPhee, who has now won 10 gold medals in successive island games, left early to participate in a World Cup mountain-biking event in Andorra, while Kara Hanlon also departed before the end of the games, heading to Aberdeen for the Scottish Championships, a Commonwealth Games trial ahead of Gold Coast 2018. She placed 2nd in her 100 metre breaststroke event there.
Team coach Iain GG Campbell said: “There were lots of personal bests for our young swimmers, but arguably the highlight of the week was Heather’s gold in the triple jump. A fantastic series of PB jumps, an inspiration to other youngsters watching and lovely that her family were there to witness it. Eve Carrington has also been an incredible all-round athlete over seven games. Gotland have been fantastic hosts - very friendly and accommodating. It’s a beautiful island, which I am sure some of us will re-visit in the future.”
Coastguard volunteer off baby duty
A Stornoway coastguard volunteer left the bedside of his wife and new baby on Saturday to answer an emergency call-out at the hospital. Members of the Coastguard volunteer team were tasked to man the helicopter landing site just after 5pm, when rescue helicopter R948 was inbound with three casualties. The three men had fallen from a fishing boat into a loch on the Scaliscro estate, near Uig and, despite making their own way out of the water, called for emergency help. The helicopter was sent to recover them to Western Isles Hospital, where they were checked for hypothermia and the effects of immersion. Coastguard volunteers then went to Scaliscro to search for the party’s dog, a spaniel called Breagha, which is still missing after coming out of the water. Anyone who sees the dog in the area is asked to contact the estate or Stornoway Coastguard. The new father returned to parent duty immediately after the call.
Read more: Local News for Monday 3rd July 2017