Butt to Barra District News 3.7.14

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Pictured are the Lewis team going to Tanzania this week with the charity Go Make a Difference would like to sincerely thank the whole island community for their generosity in supporting their fundraising efforts. A total of over £6,500 was raised.

This money will go directly towards helping the local people in Tanzania. The group will use all the money to build toilets and water tanks, to decorate a health centre, to buy mosquito nets and to fund other projects.

A big thank you goes to all who volunteered at the fundraising events, who donated children’s shoes and other items and who supported the group in lots of different ways.


Literary event - A series of free evening literature events by Scottish PEN which unites Commonwealth and Scottish writers along the route of the Queens Baton Relay across Scotland will take place in Stornoway on July 8th.

Every event will examine a movement in Commonwealth history and allow the authors to discuss their relative works.

The Stornoway event is at 7-9pm at the Woodlands Centre, with the themes: Celtic Commonwealth – Gaelic poetry and literature from Canada, Scotland and Northern Ireland/Ireland.

There will be performances in different strands of Gaelic from Commonwealth countries. Live music and a bar will be part of the evening.

The authors are Lewis MacKinnon, Meg Bateman and friends.


Point Football Book Launch - Point Football Club is inviting everyone connected with the club in the past or present, whether as a player, a committee member or a supporter, to come along to Ionad Stoodie for a very special event.

The date is Tuesday, 8th of July at 7.30 and the occasion is the launch of the eagerly-anticipated history of the club, ‘Playing for the Red Jersey,’ by Matthew Maciver. The publication of the book commemorates the 80th anniversary of the founding of the club.

‘I’ve seen the final draft of the book and Mata has made a fantastic job of it,’ club secretary Iain Macsween commented. ‘It’s a fascinating read and is beautifully illustrated with team pictures and individual ones of some of the characters from the past.

The publishers, Acair, are to be congratulated for making such a fine job of it at a price which is affordable.’

The evening will be a very enjoyable one with formalities kept to a minimum. There will be a licensed bar and a good turnout is assured. Everyone who has ever pulled on the famous Red Jersey or who has cheered the team on should come along. Don’t wait for an invitation – there are none being sent. Just turn up!


Death in Eoropie - The morning of Tuesday 24th June brought with it the sad news that Donald Thomson (Domhnall Aonghais Ruaidh), formerly from 2 Cross Skigersta, had after a lingering illness, borne with fortitude for the past few year, passed away at his home at 36A Eoropie.

Donald, who was aged 77 years and followed a seafaring career, will be remembered with affection and missed by all who came to know him through the years.

On the evening of Wednesday 25th June, the Free Presbyterian Church in Lionel was full to capacity for wake worship conducted by Rev. Alan MacColl, and on Thursday again assembled there for the funeral service taken by Rev. MacColl.

He was assisted in prayer by Rev. Malcolm Macleod Free Church Shawbost, and singing of praise was led by William Murray, elder, Free Church Continuing, Tong, and in English by Angus Graham, elder, Barvas Free Church, who is from South Dell.

Rev. MacColl officiated at the graveside on Habost Machair with an address suited to the solemnity of the occasion.

In their bereavement, we share our thoughts and sympathy with Donald’s wife Mary, daughters Mairi and Anne, the grandchildren, and we remember his sister Mary Ann, his brothers Norman, Donald and Malcolm, and all close relatives and friends who mourn in the passing of Donald.

School topics - As another school term comes to an end, we wish our children, teachers and other school staff a safe, healthy and happy break away from their varied school duties.

Our good wishes follow those who leave their school desks for the last time as they now venture into, and take their own place in a new and different environment.

In other news from the district - Norman Smith from Lionel who does the weekly Ness news for the Stornoway Gazette was presented with a plaque by Comunn Eachdraidh Nis last Thursday.

He was made Honorary President of Comunn Eachdraidh Nis following his 90th birthday in April for all the work he has done for the society over the years.

Representatives from Carthannas Nis, The War Memorial Committee and the Cemetery Committee were in attendance as Norman has been a stalwart member of all those groups for many years.


Congratulations - We send congratulations to Kenny Maciver, Back, who recently received an OBE in the Queens Birthday Honours list for services to Gaelic broadcasting and to the community. Kenny is married to a Lemerway exile Ishbel Nicolson.

We also remember John Murdo Morrison, Harris who was awarded the MBE for services to the community.

Holidays - With the schools getting their annual summer holidays this week we wish both pupils and teachers an enjoyable summer break. We also welcome old friends and new who are currently home for a summer break in our midst.


Crossreach Baton comes to Lewis - CROSSREACH was launched in June 2005 and was previously known as the Church of Scotland Board of Social Responsibility.

Under its new name, CROSSREACH continues the Church of Scotland’s long tradition of providing care and support to the vulnerable, a public service which the Church first provided in 1869.

CROSSREACH now employs more than 2,000 staff and, with an annual expenditure of £51 million, supporting some of the most vulnerable people in Scotland.

Most of its funding comes from Local Authorities and is augmented by Legacies and Donations.

To showcase the vital work of the orgnisation the CROSSREACH Baton is being relayed throughout Scotland and the Baton arrived in Lewis last weekend, visiting CROSSREACH’s ‘Dochas’ and ‘Lewis Street Project’ in Stornoway, together with a number of Churches.

Carved from a single piece of oak, the Baton’s journey began when it was launched by the Moderator of the Church of Scotland’s General Assembly from the main stage of ‘Heart & Soul’, the General Assembly’s worship event, on Sunday, May 18th.

The Baton travels throughout Scotland during the build up to the Commonwealth Games and arrives at the Kirkhaven Project (Glasgow), in the shadow of the Sir Chris Hoy Velodrome, on Monday, July 21st.

In a letter accompanying the Baton, Dr Sally E Bonnar, Convener of CROSSREACH, says: “As the CROSSREACH Baton journeys throughout Scotland, visiting all our services, and some Churches connected to them, showing that, while we are a large and diverse organisation, we are united by shared values and commitment to serving in Christ’s name”.


Meetings - Upon invitation I attended my first ever Jehovah’s Witness meetings at East Camp, Balivanich on Thursday evening, July 26th,and on the Sunday morning (29th), having an open mind going in I liked the experience - it was different.

There was a compelling live link-up with Kingdom Hall in Sconser on the Isle of Skye, including Iain Bates and Chris Heath, after speakers from Inverness, Dingwall and Fort William - in direct communication with us by sermon and microphone.

Themes over the two meetings were many and varied, from Biblical quotation, including problems in life, physical, emotional and mental problems, and coming back from that situation when we are on that cliff ledge and heading to disaster.

Table Top Sale - This was held under the auspices of Benbecula North Community Company on Saturday, June 28th, the well attended event realised £175.96 towards charity .

Benbecula North Community Company was formed in April and on May 29th obtained charitable status.

Chairman David Goss recruited up to 22 members on Saturday alone, with the company holding 43 members at the time of writing, with every possibility of more joining in the future.

Wednesday Club - The club at An Caladh has been on hold for some time now, but is due to resume this week on July 2nd. An Caladh appeal for a larger turnout on this particular day in order to keep it going.

Mondays are usually much more frequented and with lunch and the usual facilities (pool etc) - is successful, with tables filled and a bubbly atmosphere.

On Tuesdays the ‘Mens’ Shed’ as it is tastefully known by, is from the office next to HH in Winfield Way, from where callers have been cultivating an impressive vegetable section at the horticultural premises near An Caladh as well as visiting local landmarks.

On Thursdays it’s onto Lochboisdale in South Uist for a get together there. All welcome to these events.


Harris Mod - The Harris Mod was held recently and well done to all who participated, especially the winners.

They were: Aodhan Finnegan in the P.5-7 Own Choice Learners and Instrument Own Choice categories, his sister Rebecca in the 12-15 Prescribed Song, Emma Macleod in the 16-18 Prescribed Song and Rebecca Macleod in the Secondary Precenting.

Rinn sinn uile glè mhath!

Rubbish - It has been brought to our notice there is a collection of unsightly rubbish beside the factory road at the old bonfire site.

It is hoped this will soon be removed as it gives visitors an unfortunate first impression of our island.