View across the Outer Harbour of Stornoway

Wednesday, 6 June 2012

16 years ago

A simple image, which some of my regular readers (you know who you are) will recognise. The track, paved with ground-up seashells, the leafless trees, although in bud, and the pale-blue sky of early spring. Nothing out of the ordinary, but what prompted the post was the wee cat in the roadside. The picture was taken on the Dutch island of Vlieland in April 1996. I have images of the same location from much more recent years, but the wee cat will no longer be in it - or around. Things change.

The same applies to this old pic from Stornoway, taken on 31 July 1996.

Only the Caledonian Hotel and adjacent buildings are still standing. The Maritime Building was demolished in October 2007, and the sheds on the quayside were removed well before I came to Lewis in 2004.

The below image, from April last year, shows a side-on view of the same area, pier no 1.

68 years ago today

Today in 1944, an armada of ships brought an invasion force to the beaches of Normandy, spelling the beginning of the end for Nazi Germany. After some hard fighting, the march through France, Belgium and Holland did not falter until they reached the Rhine bridge at Arnhem in September that year.

A list of those from the Isle of Lewis who fell at Normandy and the month following the invasion.

Last address in Lewis: 30 Knock, Carloway
Service unit: Royal Navy HMMM 7
Date of death: 07/06/1944 at the age of 34
Killed in action in D-day Invasion of Normandy

Last address in Lewis: 8 North Tolsta
Service unit: Naval Auxiliary Personnel (Merchant Navy) HMRT Sesame
Date of death: 11/06/1944 at the age of 41
Lost off Normandy

Last address in Lewis: 2/4 Kershader
Service unit: 7th Seaforth Highlanders
Date of death: 28/06/1944 at the age of 24
Killed in action at Caen, France

Last address in Lewis: 15 Cross Street Coulregrein
Service unit: 6th Royal Scots Fusiliers
Date of death: 29/06/1944 at the age of 30
Lost in German counter attack at Manvieu

Leading Seaman DONALD MUNRO
Last address in Lewis: 6 Knock, Point
Service unit: Royal Naval Reserve HMMM 1019
Date of death: 02/07/1944 at the age of 37
Lost off Cherbourg

Hurricane update - 6 June

A tropical cyclone has formed in the Southern Hemisphere, more than a month after the season ended. Tropical storm Kuena is 600 miles east of Madagascar and will strengthen gradually as it moves over Agalega, an outlying island under the jurisdiction of Mauritius. The system is expected to veer northwest, passing through the archipelago of the Seychelles. Kuena will be weakening at that point, and is not expected to survive to the coastline of mainland Africa.