Local News for Friday 29th September 2017

Runrig’s last beat of the drum on sale today
Public tickets go on open sale at 10am this morning for the farewell concert by Scotland’s biggest band, Runrig, who announced their intention to stop touring and performing as a group earlier this week. The Last Dance tour has one performance in Scotland, at Stirling’s new venue at City Park, Dumbarton Road on August 18th. Many islanders are on the band’s fan list and took advantage of early-bird ticket offers, making plans to attend what will be a historic event for music-lovers. Runrig were inundated with media attention and comments from fans after they made their announcement on Monday. The band said on their Facebook page: “The last 24 hours or so have been overwhelming. We’ve had literally thousands of people get in touch, the majority of which have been sending their love our way. It’s been humbling seeing the response to yesterday’s announcement and reading all of the memories that you associate with either the band or our music.”

Joint Warrior
A major UK-led multinational exercise is set to begin at the weekend when Exercise Joint Warrior gets underway. Joint Warrior 17/2 will take place between 30th September and 12th October and will see exercises by land forces, warships, submarines and aircraft across the UK. The maritime element is focussed in the waters around Scotland. One of the largest military exercises of its kind in Europe, Joint Warrior gives NATO allies an opportunity to improve tactics. Fourteen nations will bring ships, aircraft and troops including 35 naval units from Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Estonia, France, Germany, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, the Netherlands, Spain, the UK and the US. This year the exercise overlaps with the US Navy-led operation Formidable Shield, which is testing anti-missile capability in conjunction with the Hebrides rocket range.

Minister in islands
UK Government minister Lord Ian Duncan is in Lewis and Harris today, representing the Scotland Office on a tour of island businesses. As well as meeting representatives of Comhairle nan Eilean Siar, the Under Secretary of State for Scotland will be given a tour of the new facilities at the Shawbost Mill of Harris Tweed Hebrides, and be taken to the site of the proposed new St Kilda Centre at Mealasta. He’ll later visit the Isle of Harris Distillery.

Charity match
A charity football match is being played tomorrow at the Creagan Dubh pitch in Lochs, in memory of Kenny Macmillan, with a cup named in his honour. Teams of Over 30s and Under 30s will face each other, with a 2.30pm kick-off and transport available from the Rangers Club in Stornoway at 1.30pm. After the match there’ll be a buffet and raffle at the Rangers Club. All funds raised will go to a local charity.