Doubts cast over future of Stornoway abattoir sale plan as current site is '˜ideal'

Users of Stornoway Abattoir have told the Comhairle that they will not a support a move to relocate the facility to elsewhere in the town '˜unless an alternative site had been identified, planning permission secured, and a funding package was in place for a new unit'.

Comhairle officers met with the Abattoir users group recently after it emerged that a proposal had been received by the authority from a local developer to purchase the existing site.

But in the meeting, the Users Group expressed doubts that a suitable alternative site could be found and stated that the current location was ‘ideal’.

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The meeting also discussed possible improvements that could be funded through the Islands Deal, and Comhairle officers are currently looking at approaches to abattoir services developed in Orkney and Shetland.

A report on the proposals and the recent meeting that went before councillors at last week’s Sustainable Development Committee meeting, also stated that the future sustainability of the abattoir service could be improved by new developments to include better waste disposal, and the addition of a chilling unit to handle game.

The report concluded that Users were ‘supportive of any investigations looking into improvements that would enable the sector to improve margins and access markets, local and national, to ensure sustainability of both the unit and the wider crofting sector’.