Local News for Monday 30th January 2017

Last-minute nominations for Crofting Commission
Comhairle nan Eilea Siar has been taken by surprise with a large number of late nominations for the available positions on the board of the Crofting Commission. Nominations which were received just before the deadline have to be checked, at a Scottish Government level, against legislative requirements. As a result the names of the candidates will not now be released until later today (Monday).


 
Changed access to Accident and Emergency
The entrance to the A&E department of Western Isles Hospital is to be temporarily closed from Tuesday, as ssential maintenance work is carried out. Access to the Emergency Department will only be available via the main door of the hospital and through the Outpatients and X-Ray Departments. Clear signposting will show the way through to the Emergency Department. Normal service is expected to resume on Monday 6th February. NHS Western Isles have apologised for any inconvenience caused to patients.
 
Alex ‘hits a wall’
Charity walker Alex Ellis-Roswell has admitted he’s ‘hit a wall’ as he makes his way down through Harris on the latest leg of his marathon fundraiser for the RNLI. Alex has been away from home for two and a half years, having set off in August 2014 to walk 9,500 miles around the coastline of the UK and Ireland. After entering Stornoway on a high last weekend, he went down with a cold and struggled to get back on the road again on Friday. Islanders continue to support him with donations and supplies of hot drinks and food, but he has said he is struggling with motivation as he heads for Leverburgh today.
 
Island kids’ smiles are ‘the best’
Island primary school children have the most decay-free teeth in Scotland, according to latest figures. The 2016 National Dental survey shows that the Scottish islands – the Western Isles, Orkney and Shetland – can boast eight out of 10 primary one children having no signs of tooth decay at all, with NHS Western Isles saying that 78% of children in primaries 1 to 7 are decay-free up from just 54%. They credit the health of children’s smiles to the NHS Western Isles Childsmile programme, where children are given oral hygiene education, supervised brushing, and simple tooth-strengthening fluoride treatments. Colin Robertson, NHS Western Isles’ Chief Area Dental Officer, said “Our local Childsmile programme is already stronger and more developed than the national scheme.  We are able to reach a larger proportion of our local children and in some of our smaller schools, we are even able to offer participation to every child in tooth-brushing.”
 
Isles FM turns to listeners again
And Isles FM has turned to listeners for support as a continuing technical failure means the station remains off air. The replacement parts needed have an eight-week lead time for delivery, and with every engineer visit costing more money, and temporary hire kit also expensive, the directors are weighing up options for how to get back on air in the shortest possible time. A crowdfunding appeal has been launched and listeners urged to show support, so that the 22-year service offered by the volunteer-run station can continue into the future.