Local News for Thursday 1st December 2016

New Lord Lieutenant for Western Isles
Donald Martin has been appointed by Her Majesty the Queen as the new Lord-Lieutenant for the Western Isles, succeeding the long-serving Sandy Matheson CVO OBE JP, who retired last month after nearly 16 years in the role. Mr Martin has been cojgratulated on his appointment by Comhairle Convener Cllr Norman MacDonald, who said: "Donald is a well-known and respected figure in our community and has contributed significantly towards the work of Gaelic Development and Harris Tweed in the islands. He has also been a valued public servant in many different roles, principally on behalf of the Islands. We wish him the very best and hope that he enjoys his new position."


 
Islanders rally to support food bank
Islanders have rallied to support the Eilean Siar food bank, as they build up their seasonal stock for Christmas support to people in need. Three days of collecting at Tescos in Stornoway began today, with volunteers handing out ‘shopping lists’ of important items. Meanwhile Point Free Church congregation made a substantial donation of food after a congregation appeal, and Western Isles Volunteering is building a ‘Christmas Tree’ of donated foodstuffs in a seasonal twist on collecting. Students from Lews Castle College have also contributed home-made and decorated Christmas cakes to go into the parcels. You can contribute to the foodbank’s seasonal appeal at Tescos or the Co-op from today (Thursday) until Saturday.
 
North Lewis late night shopping
Late night shopping in North Lewis is tonight (Thursday) with bbusinesses around the Ness area staying open between 5 and 9pm to let people get started on their Christmas gift-buying. Businesses taking part include Borve Pottery and Ness Historical Society, who will also be hosting stands from food producers Stramash and the Hebridean Brownie Co. Cross Stores, Cross Post Office and the Harbour View Gallery will also be open late, and there’s a second chance to shop next Thursday, December 8th, at the same times.
 
MSP pledges action on cold calls
Nuisance phone calls are causing distress and financial hardship to vulnerable people, as well as being a nuisance to everyone, according to Western Isles MSP Alasdair Allan. Dr Allan has pledged to tackle the issue and  is inviting constituents plagued by cold calls to get in touch. Dr Allan said: “Sadly, nuisance calls are something almost all of us are only too familiar with. While many of us simply find them irritating, they can cause extreme distress, particularly for vulnerable people, and can even leave people too scared to answer their phones. The new Nuisance Calls Commission will help give individuals and businesses more power to stop cold calling, whilst exploring if stronger regulation is necessary. I intend to raise the issue of nuisance calls with the Commission and invite any concerned individuals in the islands to get in touch to talk about their experience”.