Western Isles MP Angus Brendan MacNeil has welcomed the announcement from Comhairle nan Eilean Siar that the sports facilities in Uist and Barra will be open during the Christmas and New Year period.
This will be on the basis of a pilot project to gauge customer response and the Comhairle will then assess whether it is feasible to make this a feature in future years.
Historically, these facilities would close on Christmas Eve and not reopen until after the holiday period.
Mr MacNeil asked the Comhairle to revise this decision and give all communities equal access to sport facilities.
Commenting Angus MacNeil said: “I am pleased to receive confirmation from the Comhairle that this year the sports facilities at Lionacleit and Castlebay will be open within the Christmas and New Year holiday period.
“The closure of the sports facilities at Lionacleit and Castlebay from Christmas Eve until after the New Year break was difficult for people and I asked the Comhairle to review the opening times of these facilities.
“In the interest of health and social wellbeing and particularly at this time of year, it is important that people have access to recreational facilities
“These extended opening times of these facilities are on a trial basis and the Comhairle will gauge customer usage to assess whether it is feasible to make this a feature in future years.
“I hope that the local communities will take advantage of these extended opening times.”