Local News for Friday 22nd September 2017

Car parking charges start on Monday
Parking charges due to start on Monday in Stornoway town centre received ‘no objections’ from the public when the Comhairle consulted on the proposal. The Comhairle’s Transportation and Infrastructure Committee agreed in June meeting to extend pay and display into the Fisherman's car park, parking by the Star Inn and at the Caledonian Hotel.

No objections were received during a consultation which took place earlier this year. The charges for the different areas vary, so motorists should read the instructions on the pay and displpay machines. A Comhairle announcement also reminded drivers that parking machines will take the new 12-sided pound coins rather than the round version, which is being withdrawn from use next month.

Missile test from Hebrides Range
A test of NATO’s ballistic missile defences will see a missile fired twice as high and twice as far as one fired during demonstrations in 2015, according to information from the US Navy. Missiles are to be fired from the Hebrides Rocket Range as part of the international maritime exercise 'Formidable Shield', which begins this weekend, with the Royal Netherlands Navy frigate De Ruyter tasked to detect and track a missile flying at 20,000 kilometres per hour. The US 6th Fleet will lead the exercise at the Hebrides Range. It’s intended to improve allied joint working, using NATO command and control reporting structures. Canada, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Spain, the United Kingdom, and the United States are all scheduled to participate in the exercise, which will overlap with Joint Warrior, scheduled for the seas around Scotland in October.

Shop thief arrested and charged
Western Isles Police have confirmed that a man has been charged in connection with a theft from the Buth an Rubha community shop at Knock, Point. Alcohol and cigarettes were taken during the break-in, and foodstuffs were used to wreck the shop, which is run as a community concern. The crime sparked outrage in Point, with numerous offers of help in the clean-up operation. The shop re-opened after just a day without trading. The 23-year-old man was arrested and a number of items from the shop recovered following a search of a property in the Stornoway area. The man will appear at Stornoway Sheriff Court in due course. Detective Sergeant Iain Morrison said: "We know that this incident has caused considerable concern in the local area and I'm grateful for the support of the public while we have been carrying out enquiries.” Shop manager Norman Macleod has posted his gratitude to all those who offered support following the crime on Monday night, saying: “Thank you all for all your support and kind messages from near and far over the last two days. It is so very much appreciated.”