Engineers from Scottish Hydro Electric Power Distribution (SHEPD) have presented Portree RNLI with a cheque for £5,000 in recognition of the assistance given restoring power to customers in Raasay after Storms Gertrude and Henry battered the Highlands and Islands in close succession earlier this year.

The lifeboat crew twice came to the assistance of SHEPD’s local team, initially taking linesmen to the island on the evening of 29 January to get the lights back on while Gertrude unleashed winds gusting up to 94mph and then again on 1 February when lightning associated with Storm Henry inflicted fresh damage. The severe conditions meant that the Raasay ferry was unable to sail, leaving engineers facing an uncertain wait to bring help to island customers.

SHEPD Team Manager Neil Macdonald, who was one of the engineers transported to the island, said: “The assistance we received from the RNLI was given freely by highly skilled volunteers who are used to saving lives at sea in atrocious conditions. The value of their work for our communities - and on this occasion for our customers who were without power - goes well beyond money. We hope our donation is a small recognition of the unique service they made available to us and the difference it made.

CalMac Ferries Ltd has gone public for the first time with its plans to transform west coast ferry services in a new contract beginning on 1 October for up to eight years.

The company, which was announced as the successful bidder for the Clyde and Hebrides Ferry Services tender in May, signed the contract with Transport Scotland on August 22 following the finalisation of legal agreements.

Scottish Ministers and Transport Scotland place great value on the contribution that the Clyde and Hebrides Service can make to the social, cultural and economic vitality of Scotland, and in particular in the Island and Coastal communities. 

Managing Director, Martin Dorchester, said that CalMac’s winning bid was rooted in ambitious plans to drive improvements which will transform the experience of ferry travellers, exemplify customer focus, and show the company’s determination to make a positive difference to the communities.

Skye Ladies missed out on a Valerie Fraser Camanachd Cup victory after going down to a 4-2 defeat to rivals Lochaber.

However, at least there was the consolation of being presented with the Ladies 1st Division trophy after a season long fight for the title.

Glendale Trust want to get the go ahead to bring the local Pooltiel Pier and slipway back into full use.

They are seeking planning permission which, if successful, would see essential repairs and an extension to the low water mark carried out. The extended slipway would then provide safe access to the water at all times.

Steven Fraser in action

Skye and Lochalsh Club stage their annual Skeabost Rally Time Trial next month.

The event, won in 2015 by Steven Fraser, will take place on Saturday 17th September, with spectators, as always, welcome to come along and enjoy the high speed actions.

One hundred and twenty rides cycled their way around Skye this week as the annual Sportive event was staged on the island.

In the 95 miles Skye Mor some 70 riders set off with all but one managing to completed the tough course around the north of Skye before heading for Dunvegan and back via Sligachan.

First male place went to Alan Cope with a time of 4.47.03 while first female home was Marie Meldrum in 5.08.51.

Cuillin Wheel members James Stephenson was 30th in a time of 5.50.32 followed by Simon Hammond in 52nd place at 6.52.30

In the 48 mile Skye Beag there were 50 competitiors and the winner time was Jonathan Bell’s 2.24.42 while first female was 17 years old Ella Conelly in 2.34.00. Cuillin Wheeler, Wheldon Houlsby did a time of 3.53.43 for 40th.

Full results


Gina at the oath ceremony


Skye now has a new Special Constable after Gina Mills was officially sworn in.

She travelled to Police Scotland’s training centre at Tulliallan Castle in Kincardine, Fife, for the special occasion.

Set in 90 acres of parkland the 19th century built facility castle lies at the heart of the force’s main training facility.
Since opening for police training in 1954, Tulliallan has also been Scotland’s central recruit training base for over 50 years.

Roger and Andrea

A tweed worn by the rich and famous is the inspiration for Glendale weavers Roger and Andrea Holden.

In the past the Glenurquhart Check, probably one of the world’s most famous tweeds, has been worn by the likes of former US president, Ronald Reagan, actor Cary Grant and figured in the creations of designer Ralph Lauren.

Created in the mid-19th century it now comes in a huge variety of related patterns, known as Glen Checks.

Now though this October, to mark Wool Week, a celebration of all things woollen, Roger and Andrea who run Skye Weavers, are setting out to design their very own special variation of this pattern, the Glendale Check.

The work of Lucky2bhere, the Skye-based life-saving charity received a massive boost from the emergency services in Stornoway recently when it received a cheque for £7311,79 arising from the annual soccer match between 999 service personnel and a fundraising evening event.

In the hard-fought game on Saturday August 13 at the Stornoway Running Track pitch, the police took a 2-0 lead, but the fire service came back with a 3-2 victory to take the cup home for another year.  The police team included members of the ambulance, paramedical and Coastguard services.

Roddy Macdonald and Angus Morrison of Lucky2bhere on the Western Isles received the cheque on behalf of the charity and Angus talked of the huge progress made by Lucky2bhere during 2016.

Portree & Braes Community Trust have landed extra cash to help cover the cost of the local helipad.

Inverness based PDG Helicopters have donated £300 which will be used locally to maintain the pad which helps ensure that it remains available for emergency use for residents of Portree and north Skye