Butt to Barra - District News 05-02-15

editorial image


Emergency Plan – following the recent bad weather and subsequent power cuts, a few people in the Pairc area have been talking about forming a local plan to deal with such emergencies in the future.

A meeting is planned to try and discuss these issues and take forward some action points. It would be beneficial to have someone from each village represented at the meeting to try and make sure all the area is covered.

Those who are interested, should go along to Kershader Resource Centre on Wednesday 11th February from 7.30pm to find out more.

Pairc Hall – the final plans for the Hall have been finalised and will be on display in Ravenspoint over the next few weeks.

The committee have joined forces with Pairc Trust and Pairc Playgroup who are also looking for new accommodation.

The new site for the hall is opposite the Kershader Fank between Garyvard and Kershader, on the Common Grazings.

It will include a sports hall, office space and nursery. The hall group are planning to have a drop in session at Ravenspoint on the 6th and 7th February to discuss the plans. There will also be a ‘Family Quiz Night’ on Saturday 21st February at Pairc School.

Sympathy - We send our sincere condolences to the wife & family of the late Roddy Mackenzie, Habost and Gravir, who recently passed away in Bethesda Hospice aged 81 years. Roddy better known as ‘Roddy Murty’ was a well known figure in the community and beyond and was a diligent, hardworking individual who greatly supported the area of South Lochs and what it stood for serving on various committees for many years.

Pre funeral services were held in Gravir Free Church with interment taking place in the nearby cemetery.

To his wife Joan, sons Murdo and Angus and his sister Chrissie and the extended family we sent our sincere sympathy in their sore loss.

Condolences - We also remember the family of the late Neil Macleod, Caros, Cromore and Stornoway who recently passed away in the Western Isles Hospital.

We also remember the family of the late Ann Margaret Matheson, Stornoway and Gravir who passed away in Bethesda Hospice following a short illness.

Congratulations - Belated congratulations go to Kate Mackay resident in Dun Eisdean Nursing home and ex 2 Gravir who recently celebrated her 100th birthday.

Those who celebrated her birthday with her had a lovely afternoon of tea and cake and entertainment organised by the home. S’math a rinn thu.


The annual Bethesda Lunch organised by Margaret Maciver will be held this year on February 7th at 12 noon in the Tolsta Village Hall.

The cost of the lunch will be the same as last year £8. A small sale of work will also be held and any items or baking you wish to donate will be gratefully received. Please contact Margaret on 890 463 for collection.

Margaret appreciates your help and support every year and hopes that you will be able to join her for lunch with your friends and neighbours and have an enjoyable Saturday afternoon break whilst helping a very worthy cause.


PM Alex Maciver - The pipe tunes written by Pipe Major Alex Maciver Glasgow and Lochs, are now available as a new online collection, making them available to pipers and pipe tutors all over the world.

A number of the tunes are familiar to some of the current high ranking Scottish pipers, as practice pieces with tutor PM Alex MacIver of the 214 Boys Brigade in Glasgow during the 1950s and 60s.

Alex MacIver (pictured)was born in Glasgow, the son of John MacIver, Iain Mhurchaidh of 12 Laxay and Catherine MacKenzie, Catriona Murchaidh Sheòrais of 4b Achmore .

Having returned from army service in India in 1947, he joined the 214th Boys Brigade in Glasgow as pipe tutor. The pipe band of youngsters under his leadership, were winners of the Glasgow Battalion Championship 29 times, 25 of these, being in successive years.

The collection of thirty pipe tunes are available on www.214bb.com . In 2011 Hector Russell on behalf of 214th BB Association, as a tribute to his former tutor, catalogued the tunes, with some of the original manuscripts contributed by former 214th BB members, from as far away as Australia.

The Pipe Mayor visited Lewis every summer and some of the tune titles reflect his love of Lewis and Harris: Loch Erisort, Laxay Poachers, Achmore Loch, Lochs of Lewis. Sands of Luskentyre, Broadbay , Hebridean Polka, The Kyles of Scalpay and The Ullapool Ferry.

Another composition is a tribute to his friendship with another of the island’s most famous pipers: Pipe Mayor Donald Macleod’s Farewell to Fort George

A copy of the pipe tune collection was recently contributed by Hector Russell to the Kinloch Historical Society .


Community Buyout - A meeting of the Development Trust took place recently in the Community Centre. The feasibility study is still being carried out and the reports are expected towards the end of February. Once these are available a public meeting will take place in the Community Centre where the findings of the report will be discussed.

More information will follow as it becomes available.

Whist - We hope to hold regular whist nights in the café on Friday nights at 7.30pm with the next meeting this week. Please come along as all are welcome.

Sympathy - Following a recent illness we are sad to report the death of Angus K Morrison from Valtos whose mother came from Hacklete.

The community was also saddened to hear of the passing of Mary Ann Maciver whose mother is from Tobson and her father was the late DHM Maciver.

To both families we send condolences and deepest sympathies from the Community.


New minister for Harris - Next week Rev David Macleod will be officially welcomed as the first minister of the recently formed North Harris Free Church.

The North Harris congregation, which meets in the Community Centre in Tarbert, unanimously called the 40-year-old last month.

A welcome service is being held in the Community Centre on Shore Road on Tuesday February 10th, beginning at 7pm. Refreshments will be served afterwards.

Rev Calum Iain Macleod (Lochs), Moderator of the Western Isles Presbytery, will preach at the induction, Point’s Rev Dr Iain D Campbell will address the newly inducted minister, and Stornoway assistant Rev Kenny I Macleod will give a word of encouragement to the congregation.

Rev David Macleod joined the Free Church at last October’s Commission of Assembly after leaving the Church of Scotland, and has been providing pulpit supply for North Harris Free Church since the beginning of December.

He said: “We are very thankful to God for giving us the opportunity to serve in North Harris. His timing is perfect and the way He led, both us as a family, and the congregation to this point speaks powerfully of His faithfulness and sovereignty.

“Over these past few weeks we have really enjoyed worshipping with this vibrant fellowship of God’s people.

“We now look forward to being part of that worshipping fellowship, and reaching out with the Good News about Jesus Christ in North Harris in this new phase of ministry.”

Rev Dr Iain D Campbell, who looked after the North Harris congregation as interim moderator during the vacancy, added: “We are all delighted for the congregation of North Harris to be getting a new minister, and also for the Western Isles Presbytery to be getting a new member.”

Before being called to the ministry, David was a surveyor and spent 10 years working in Inverness.

After completing his training at Aberdeen University, he was called to Lochcarron, where he ministered until September 2014.

Western Isles

Men’s Breakfast - Martins for Men are having a bacon butty breakfast from 9am to 10.30am on Saturday 7th February in Martins Memorial Church hall, Stornoway.

Rev Tommy Macneil will be sharing a short message. All men welcome for a time of fun, fellowship and food. It would be handy to know numbers by 6pm on Friday - phone Robert on 0776 550 7689

Action for Children - Staff at Action for Children Scotland’s Eilean Siar services in Stornoway have sent thanks to local people and businesses which supported the charity’s work in 2014.

Support from the community has had a vital impact on services for vulnerable children and young people, enabling Action for Children Scotland to run extra groups, outings and activities, purchase special equipment for young people with additional needs, make improvements to its gardens, and hold trips to the mainland.

Valerie Russell, children’s service manager at Action for Children Scotland, said: “I would like to thank everyone who has supported our Eilean Siar services – from making donations, to backing our campaigns, to taking part in fundraising challenges.

“Together we have achieved a lot, but sadly there is still more to be done. We’re committed to doing everything we can to transform lives of vulnerable children and young people across the Outer Hebrides – and we hope that local residents and businesses will continue to offer their support.”

To find out more visit: www. actionforchildren.org.uk.