Slideshow: Week in Pictures 26-2-15

Athletes from Stornoway Running and Athletics Club galloped to glory at the weekend’s Scottish National XC Championships.

Top of the podium once again was teenager Connor Maclean who broke the tape in the U17 Men’s event to win gold with a blistering race pace of 21:18.

He finished a comfortable 16-seconds clear of nearest challenger Alex Carcas of Edinburgh AC but third place was also taken by a red shirt of SRAC.

Joining Maclean on the podium in third place was club mate Euan Campbell with a hugely impressive run and time of 21:36.

Lewis rally driver Calum Buchanan marked the 20th anniversary of his first Snowman Rally appearance with a series of top results.

In what was also the 60th Arnold Clark Thistle Snowman Rally, Buchanan drove into the prizes with a 14th place overall finish and a first for non-four wheel drive, a first Ford car and a first for class car.

A new local short film features Peggy Effie MacIver (pictured) from Kneep in Uig.

The well-known singer and composer of Gaelic songs, reveals how she inherited the gift of poetry from her grand uncle on his death-bed.

Peggy Effie, aged 87, filmed recently by local volunteers from Uig Media revealed in verse how the gift of poetry came with conditions that it should never be used to mock or scold.

Uist based Margaret E Cowie, Fiona MacIssac, Jacqueline Maclellan and Michaela Finnegan graduated Moray Art School in Elgin in October 2014 with BA Fine Art (Hons). An example of Margaret Cowie’s work is pictured above and work by the other graduates will be exhibited in Taigh Chearsabhagh, Lochmaddy from March 2nd, Gallery One. Inset are the graduates.

A congregation of 200 crowded into Knock and Point Free Church (Continuing) for the Ordination of Rev. Alasdair J. Macleod.

Rev. Kenneth Macdonald, Scalpay, Moderator of the Outer Hebrides Presbytery, preached from Ezra 7:10 drawing out lessons from Ezra’s life as he sought to lead the Lord’s people.

After the appointed questions were duly answered and the Formula signed, Mr Macleod was set aside for the work of the holy Ministry and admitted to the Charge of Knock & Point Free Church (Continuing).

A Gaelic development officer has been appointed by a community trust which serves the villages of Bragar and Arnol on the west side of Lewis.

Euan Macleod has taken on the role at Urras Coimhearsnachd Bhràdhagair agus Àrnoil (Bragar and Arnol Community Trust) which was set up in 2012 to benefit the community of around 600 people of which 70 percent speak Gaelic.

Internationally important breeding wader birds help support the economy of the Outer Hebrides, Scottish Natural Heritage has recognised.

Tourism is reckoned to be worth around £53million a year locally, with plans to grow it to £63million over the next five years. Local wildlife is recognised as one of the key assets for the industry.

The Uists have nesting waders in the form of dunlin, ringed plover, redshank, snipe, lapwing and oystercatcher. But they have been in decline since the mid-1980s partly due to predation by non-native hedgehogs, introduced in the 1970s.

Despite the inclement weather, a large group of SNP activists were campaigning in Stornoway last Saturday, delivering leaflets and canvassing voters to support the re-election of our MP, Angus MacNeil.

Delighted with the response on the doorstep, an SNP spokesman says: “We were making the point that both Labour and the Tories are committed to austerity policies and will impose yet more cuts on the poorest and most vulnerable people while the rich get richer”.

The Western Isles Labour Parliamentary candidate, Alasdair Morrison, has called for funding to address hospital bed blocking issues.

He wants to see funds allocated to Bethesda Care Home, Stornoway to fund an extension.

Speaking following a meeting with DR Macdonald at the care home Mr Morrison said: “Despite the best efforts of our excellent NHS staff they are working in demanding conditions where too many of their patients are being kept in hospital when they should really be cared for in a “step-down” facility.

The Western Isles Conservative Association has announced the selection of Mark Brown as their Prospective Parliamentary Candidate for the Westminster election.

Mark, 41, manages a portfolio of Small and Medium Scottish-based Enterprises for a global independent Invoice Financier.

He said: “I am proud and honoured to have been selected as the Scottish Conservative candidate for the Western Isles. Having first visited the Outer Hebrides some 23 years ago and with regularity over the past two decades I am delighted to have returned to seek election in May.

“My message is a simple one. I believe that it is time for change and a time for real leadership at Westminster.