I visited the Gearrannan Blackhouse Village today, but was sad to see the notice in the window, advising all that the hostel there has closed permanently. The proprietors, the Gatliff Hebridean Hostels Trust have posted the following message on their website, which I copy below. If you are asked about hostel accommodation in Lewis, please do NOT refer anyone to Gearrannan.
The Isle of Lewis has, to my knowledge, four hostels, namely at:
Stornoway (Heb Hostel and Fairhaven)
Galson (Galson Farm, South Galson)
Please use a search engine to find further details - I do not (as a rule) promote commercial enterprises.
STATEMENT BY GHHT
It is with regret that the Gatliff Hebridean Hostels Trust announces that the hostel at Garenin is permanently closed. It will not reopen.
We apologise for any inconvenience and disappointment this will cause.
Our lease on the building expires on 31 March 2012 and we have to vacate the building on that date, leaving the building as it was when first leased to us. This closure will allow us to fulfil our lease obligations.
If you should hear from any other source that the building is open, please inform us immediately so that all sources may be made aware of the correct position.
Please note that the SYHA hostel handbook for 2011, which states that Garenin hostel is opening from 1 April 2011, is not the current information in respect of the hostel. (The SYHA handbook was printed before the heating issues arose.) The SYHA is aware that the hostel is closed.
Please also note that Garenin village continues to operate normally. Details are to be found at the Gearrannan website.
This notice was issued on Monday 23 May 2011.