The Silent Weaver

Raasay-based writer and journalist Roger Hutchinson will be talking about his new book The Silent Weaver: The Extraordinary Life of Angus MacPhee in two forthcoming events in the Uists.

South Uist man Angus MacPhee returned from the Second World War bearing, as many young men did, invisible scars. At the age of twenty-four, and in chronic mental pain, he was referred to Craig Dunain Hospital in Inverness where he would spend the next fifty years of his life. Angus retreated into his own silent world, never speaking, but creating wonderful works of art, usually clothes, hats or caps, using organic matter – grass, wool, leaves – which he would allow to decay or even destroy himself. It was only when an art therapist discovered him and his creations did some of them begin to be preserved and Angus begin to talk again. His story is fascinating, and movingly told by Roger who also wrote the story of Calum MacLeod, the builder of Calum’s Road on Raasay.

Roger will be appearing on Sunday 11th December from 2.00 p.m. at Gerinish Taigh Ceilidh, West Gerinish, South Uist. The event is free. For more information please contact Ceolas on 01878 700154.

Roger will also be appearing on Monday 12th December 2011 at 7.30 p.m. in the Taigh Chearsabhagh Museum & Arts Centre, Lochmaddy, Isle of North Uist, Outer Hebrides, HS6 5AA. The event is free. For more information please contact Tel. 01876 500293.The Silent Weaver: The Extraordinary Life and Work of Angus MacPhee is available from all good bookshops and online (£8.99 pbk) and as an eBook. Published by Birlinn, www.birlinn.co.uk.

Roger Hutchinson is an award-winning author and journalist. After working as an editor in London, in 1977 he joined the West Highland Free Press in Skye. He is still a columnist for the WHFP, and has written for BBC Radio, The Scotsman, The Guardian, The Herald and The Literary Review. His book The Soap Man (Birlinn 2003) was shortlisted for the Saltire Scottish Book of the Year (2004) and the bestselling Calum’s Road (2007) was shortlisted for the Royal Society of Literature’s Ondaatje Prize. He is the author of several books including Camanachd!: The Story of Shinty and Father Allan: The Life and Legacy of a Hebridean Priest.