Festive Season - The Hogmanay Party was held on 31st December in the Community Centre. An excellent evening was provided by the Committee and Tosh and Tonkan provided the usual excellent entertainment.
We wish Tonkan all the best for his new life in Australia and hope that one day soon they will be back playing in the Bernera hall. The event was well attended by local residents and it was especially nice to see so many there who were home on holiday.
Christmas dinner - The next event will be the Senior Citizens Christmas Dinner on Saturday 17th January at 2pm. Anyone in the Community who is able to help with this event will be made most welcome.
There is preparation to be done on Friday night and help is required on Saturday in the kitchen and for waitressing, and of course to help clean the hall afterwards. If you can help please come along, or contact Maureen or Karina.
To all our readers and their families we wish you a very Happy and Prosperous New Year.
Burns Supper for the RNLI - Tickets are still available for the Traditional Burns Supper - with MC Roddy Shaw – on Friday 23rd January at 7 p.m., in Berneray Hall. All monies raised will go to the RNLI.
A three-course meal (menu below) and cash bar will be provided by ‘Stepping Stone’ Restaurant, Bailivanich, and there will be music, poetry and songs from a variety of talented local entertainers.
The programme for the evening will include the Selkirk Grace, Address to the Haggis, Address to the Lassies and Suitable Response, together with a selection of the poems and songs of Robert Burns. There will also be a Grand Raffle.
Menu: Cock-a-Leekie Soup with Herb Scone (alternative also available); Haggis, Neeps & Tatties (Vegetarian Haggis available) or Poached Salmon & Parsley Butter; Raspberry Cranachan with Shortbread or Cheese & Biscuits
Subject to demand, we are also looking to provide some public transport to Berneray Hall and back.
Tickets - Adults £25; Children £15 – and further information are available from Barbara Jameson (01876 500849) and Stella Evans (01876 500306).
Tickets can also be purchased from Ardmaree Stores / Lobster Pot, Berneray or from Taigh Chearsabhagh, Lochmaddy. In addition, Barbara and Stella will be selling tickets at the following locations over the next couple of weeks:
Stepping Stone Restaurant, Bailivanich: Thursday 8 January between 1pm and 3pm and Tuesday 13 January between 11am and 1 pm;
Taigh Chearsabhagh, Lochmaddy: Friday 9 January between 1pm and 3pm.
Work in the ward - Over the next few months work will be going on to improve the area at the entrance bridge to Lews Castle Grounds at the Bridge Centre.
We would like to apologise for any inconvenience, while this work is ongoing.
Lunch - The committee of the Bayhead ward extend an invitation to all over 60s residents to a lunch in the Caladh Hotel on Tuesday, January 13th from 12 to 2pm.
We would also appreciate if you could confirm your intentions by calling Angela Quail on 70 0438. See you at the lunch!
The Bayhead Committee express their good wishes to all for the year ahead in 2015.
Learning and teaching update - Parents’ Evening for S5/S6 will be held on Tuesday, 13th January.
Music prelim - For all pupils studying National 5 and Higher Music, the practical prelim will take place 12 – 16 January 2015.
The actual SQA performance exam period is 16 February – 20 March, so this will give pupils extra time to prepare for the exam.
Pupil drop-off - Parents are requested to use the drop-off area on Smith Avenue (the site of the previous bus park) in the morning and evening. The staff car park, and sports centre car park, must not be used.
Youth and Philanthropy Initiative - Congratulations to Faye Finlayson (S6) who won the Youth and Philanthropy Initiative (YPI).
The charity benefitting from her win is the Andrew Macleod Memorial Fund, which was set up by Andrew’s family to help CRY (Cardiac Risk in the Young) reduce the frequency of young sudden cardiac death.
The cheque for £3,000 was presented to Andrew’s father, Mr Murdo Macleod, at the school Christmas concert.
Pupils who participated in the YPI prepared presentations to pitch for cash for their chosen charity.
The presentations were judged by an independent panel, comprising Mr Macdonald, Convenor of CNES; Mr Graham, MG Alba; Mrs Macsween, YPI and pupil representatives Eilidh Reid and Skye Sammons (both S4). Mr Macleod from the English Department chaired the event, in which eight teams took part.
The YPI, which is an international initiative, is administered in Scotland by the Aberdeenshire-based Wood Family Trust.
Mr Macdonald said: “A great deal of research and preparation work went into all the presentations delivered by the pupils.
“Initiatives such as this not only give a donation of £3000 to a very worthwhile local charity, but also help young people acquire and develop presentation skills which will stand them in very good stead for the rest of their lives.
“I am delighted that The Nicolson Institute took part in YPI this year and following on from the success, we also hope to run the initiative at Sir E. Scott, Lionacleit and Castelbay next year.”
Mr Carpenter, the Director of Education, also extended congratulations to the pupils.
He said: ‘The YPI is an excellent project and I am delighted that pupils and staff from The Nicolson Institute have chosen to participate.
“The cheque will assist a local cause which is actively supported by our pupils in the Western Isles. I am particularly pleased that involvement in the project can enhance a range of key skills, including leadership.”
Boathandling skills - Calum Mackay (S4) has passed his Royal Yachting Association (RYA) Powerboat Level 2 course.
This qualification provides the skills and background knowledge needed to drive a powerboat.
Calum completed the two-day course through Include Us, the programme set up by CnES to assist more young people to stay and work in the islands.
“I see this as the first step in my career path,” said Calum. “I definitely want to work with boats when I leave school, and I can hopefully progress to courses such as Day Skipper and Intermediate.”
Sad ending – 2014 ended on a sad note for us here in Uig with the last weeks bringing unexpected and very sad news.
On December 9th the local community was shocked and saddened to hear of the sudden death of Calum John Mackay, formerly of Keeper’s House, Uig Lodge, who passed away at his home in Leurbost, at the age of 60 years.
Resident at Leurbost since his marriage, he was a skilled plumber to trade and will be fondly remembered by all who knew him for his good-natured personality and willingness to oblige.
The affection with which he was generally held was very evident in the very large number who gathered for his funeral at Leurbost Church of Scotland, on Thursday, 11th December, in very inclement weather.
The sympathy of the community is extended to his wife, Bell Ann, daughter Ann Marie and her husband, who were married just weeks ago, to his brothers Kenny Angus and Iain Henry, and sisters Kay, Annie Mary and Maureen, and to all the extended family.
The following week began, on the morning of Monday 15th, with the sad news that Mrs Murdina D Campbell, had passed away peacefully during the night, at her home, 12 Carishader.
She was 89 years old and despite the frailty of her advanced years, had continued to live on her own with what the community considers to be minimal official care available to her.
She and her late husband, John Campbell, originally from Caw, Tarbert, Harris, retired to Carishader over 30 years ago on his retiral from the Church of Scotland Missionary Service, latterly in Leverburgh, Harris, and formerly in several other areas of the Highlands and Islands. John Campbell then served as Comhairle nan Eilean Councillor for the Uig ward until forced to retire from that duty by the onset of his final illness.
Mrs Campbell, nee Morrison, born and brought up at Ungishader, was a lady of long-standing Christian commitment who was very knowledgeable about the people, places and events of her lifetime, who kept in touch, right up to the end, with a wide network of family and friends and who was an encourager and supporter of worthy causes.
Her passing, from time into eternity, leaves us with a sense of great loss, keenly felt in the neighbourhood of Carishader and Bays, in the congregation of Uigean Church where her seat was never empty and where she continued to attend up until a month before her death, and by the local Cairdeas Club, in addition to her own large family circle.
The sympathy of the community is extended to her four daughters, Christine, Rosemary, Catherine and Joyce and to their families who have all been very mindful of her through the years, to her brother, Callum and to her sisters, Effie, Dolina, Teenie and Beathag and sister in law, Peggy, and to the whole extended family circle.
The wake service and the funeral services were held at Uigean Church, conducted by Rev Hugh M Stewart, assisted by Rev William Macleod and Dr Ben Johnston; the praise at the services was led by John H Macleod, Kenny Angus Mackay and Iain Henry Mackay.
Seasonal Greetings – 2015 arrived in wet and windy form and was ushered in very quietly here. Community Events for 2014 concluded with a well-attended Quiz Night on Monday, 29th and 2015 started up very quickly with a New Year Breakfast in the Community Centre.
Bliadhna Mhath Ur, Happy New Year, to all at home and away, who follow this column of Uig district news.