Redevelopment project set to get underway in the Grimsay area

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New beginnings are starting as Grimsay Community Association (GCA) announce the first phase of the redevelopment of Ceann na h-Airigh.,

The renovation of the former Free Church building, has been made possible through the generosity of private donors, Comhairle nan Eilean Siar’s Community Capital Grant Fund as well as Grimsay Community Association’s own fundraising activities.

The work will improve the facilities and services, and provide a dedicated Post Office counter, archive and workroom to allow access to the asssocation’s extensive maritime and local history collections, as well as offering a more flexible and comfortable environment for community events and activities.

The association stated this week that the Post Office have confirmed that they are happy for GCA to take on the Grimsay Post Office with the counter to be relocated to Ceann na h-Airigh.

This move is a community-led initiative, but will be subject to a full public consultation, however it is expected that Post Office counter services will be offered when the building reopens.

Matthew Topsfield, Development Officer for Ceann na h-Airigh said: “The first year of community ownership of Ceann na h-Airigh has been one full of successes and fun for the residents of Grimsay, our neighbours, visitors and friends.

“At the end of 2015 we look forward to the exciting prospect of delivering Grimsay’s aspirations for this building in the new year, providing better facilities and services to our local communities.

“These achievements have only been made possible with the backing of the community and are a great example of what can be possible when people get behind local projects.

“We’d like to thank everyone who has supported us throughout the last year and look forward to welcoming you again when the doors reopen in 2016.”

As a result of the redevelopment work the building will be out of use throughout January to March 2016.

All activities, including the weekly local produce markets will be on hold until the grand relaunch event to be held in April.

The weekly local produce markets will continue, every Wednesday 3-6pm until December 16th when folk are invited to join in a festive celebration with carol singing.

To celebrate the achievements to date there will be one final event at Ceann na h-Airigh, a fundraising auction and ceilidh on Saturday, January 9th.

The auction will include all the quality fixtures and fittings that are to be removed from the building.

Amongst the items for sale are a bathroom suite and jacuzzi bath; wall panel heaters; kitchen units including ceramic sink, integral hob and oven; utility units including integral dishwasher; moulded wooden doors; a washing machine; and decorative ceiling lights.

Sale items can be viewed from 5 to 7pm on Friday, January 8th.

All are welcome to attend the auction with bidding to commence at 7pm on the Saturday.

A traditional Grimsay ceilidh featuring local musicians and artists will follow the auction. Tickets for the ceilidh are £10 each and booking is essential - please contact mtopsfield@icloud.com or 07775 812036.

Pictured is the former Free Church building which will be redeveloped into a new community resource.