Local News for Monday 25th September 2017

Princess Royal in Lewis today
Her Royal Highness Princess Anne is in Stornoway today, on her second visit in less than two months. In her capacity as chancellor of the University of the Highlands and Islands, HRH the Princess Royal will welcome the first nursing students to study mental health nursing and adult nursing to degree level in Stornoway. The courses were formerly delivered by the University of Stirling, and will now be offered by UHI in Inverness and Stornoway. Princess Anne will tour university facilities, meet the new students and give an address. On her last visit she opened the newly extended Harris Tweed Hebrides mill at Shawbost, and made a private visit to Tiumpanhead Lighthouse, where she climbed the lighthouse tower to admire the panoramic views.

Road closed after man taken ill
The Lochs road was closed for two hours on Saturday evening after a 61-year-old man was taken suddenly ill while driving. The car the man was driving left the road one mile north of Leurbost just before 5pm, and ambulance and police were quickly at the scene, but the man sadly died before he could be taken to hospital. One passenger was safely helped from the scene and the road re-opened after investigations by local police had been concluded.

Ferry capacity to be debated
Ferry capacity across the Minch will be among the topics debated this week as the Comhairle’s Transportation and Infrastructure Committee hears an update from CalMac director Brian Fulton on a new consultation. Cllr Uisdean Robertson, chairman of the committee, said that the consultation was welcome, given that ferry capacity issues in the Outer Hebrides became increasingly acute as this summer progressed. He said: “The Comhairle has long been of the view that the present ferry operation to the Outer Hebrides is not providing sufficient capacity during peak periods. The Comhairle would once again call on the Scottish Government to provide a second vessel on the Stornoway Ullapool route. In the next couple of months, people will be looking to book ahead for next summer and the current lack of capacity is impacting on the lifeline nature of the service and is an increasing inhibitor to economic growth and population retention.”

When did Lewis move to Missouri?
The news website WeLoveStornoway has launched a campaign to reclaim the Isle of Lewis, after several months when social media users have noticed their location being marked as ‘Lewis, Missouri USA’. WeLoveStornoway challenged followers to explain what was going on, after many islanders noticed their location being moved 3,500 miles west, to Lewis County in the US, every time they post on Facebook. Computer enthusiast David Yardley explained that the problem started with a mapping application which logs when users tag their location. Islanders were outnumbered by Missourans who started using the location tag, creating what WeLoveStornoway dubs ‘a transatlantic tug-of-war’ over our location. David Yardley has created a fix, and is waiting for it to be accepted by Facebook.

Tribute to Gravir community stalwarts
There was a huge turnout at the Ravenspoint Community Centre in South Lochs on Saturday, at a gathering to honour the memory of Boy and Maureen Macmillan, who passed away in tragic circumstances last November, outside their home at the Gravir Post Office. Two benches at Ravenspoint were dedicated to the memories of the popular couple, who were described as ‘inseparable’ and ‘invaluable to the community’. Boy was the third generation of his family to run the post office, and had never worked anywhere else, while Maureen came to Gravir in 1972 when the couple were married. She worked as a cleaner and kitchen assistant at Gravir school and is fondly remembered by pupils who attended during her 38 years there. Saturday’s tribute saw the centre overflowing with people from near and far, who listened to songs and poems from pupils at Pairc school and a vote of thanks from Morag Munro on behalf of the family.

Moldova Cup result
The last football silverware of the season was decided at the weekend, with Ness carrying home the Moldova Lewis Cup, sponsored by Charlie Nicolson, after beating Aths 3-2 in a close match which went to extra time at Goathill.