View across the Outer Harbour of Stornoway

Tuesday, 14 July 2009

Greetings from South Uist

I am typing this from a B&B in South Uist, about 80 miles south of Stornoway. I have spent the past two days trawling graveyards in Eriskay, South Uist, Benbecula and North Uist for wargraves or gravestones referring to people who died as a result of the two world wars. Pictures from the Barra cemeteries were very kindly taken for me, which completes the lot. All I need to do now is research the names on the gravestones and put them on the Net. I also have pictures, taken by someone else, of the war memorials in the Southern Isles, which enables me to compile an on-line tribute to the men from the aforementioned islands.

Tomorrow, I return to Lewis. Once there, I'll write the blogposts of this week.

Sunday sailings

Atlantic Lines reopens with the announcement that local ferry operator Calmac will start running a regular ferry on Sundays between Stornoway and Ullapool on the Scottish mainland. Unlike during the week, there will be only one crossing each way, leaving Lewis at 2.30pm, Ullapool at 6.15pm and returning to the island at 9pm.

Sunday sailings were opposed for many years by people wishing to retain the unique Lewis way of life, and/or for reasons of Sabbath observance. Personally, whilst deeply respecting the sincerely held religious convictions of those people, the inconsistencies had become so glaring that it was only a matter of time before the MV Isle of Lewis would show itself beyond the Arnish Lighthouse on Sundays. I mean, within the island chain covered by Western Isles Council, ferries were already running on Sundays, planes were flying on Sundays (out of the Stornoway airport) - and the pubs are open on a Sunday.