Local News for Wednesday 18th April 2018

Lifeboat rescues Shiants ‘castaway’
A woman who wanted to be an island wilderness castaway had to be rescued by Stornoway lifeboat on Monday, after coming down to earth with a bump. The 32-year-old had been taken out to the Shiant islands by boat, but had slipped and fallen less than two weeks into her planned 40 days of isolation, and called Coastguards on Monday morning at 9.20am, explaining that a headache had continued for several days after her fall. Stornoway Coastguard took advice and were told medical evacuation was necessary, so the RNLI Tom Sanderson was launched from Stornoway and brought the woman back to Stornoway Harbour, from where a Coastguard volunteer team supervised her transfer to Western Isles Hospital.

Leverhulme memorial auction
The latest fundraising venture for the Leverhulme Community Hub is a spring auction which is now well underway. Online and telephone bids are being encouraged for lots donated by 11 Isle of Harris businesses, ranging from tasty treats to trips out to view the islands from the sea. The auction is running throughout April and all funds raised will go towards the Leverhulme Community Hub Project. Bids so far include £200 bid for a luxury dinner for two from Harris pop-up restaurant Flavour and £125 for a 21-year-old bottle of ruby flagon Chivas Regal. Fresh salmon, seafood straight from the boat, a week’s cottage holiday and a Harris scenic tour are also among the lots on offer. The auction closes at 5pm on April 30th. You can find out more, and make your bid, via the Leverhulme Community Hub Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/LevComHub/

‘SCRAPbook' for costal clean-ups
The gathering pace of coastal cleanup operations is to be supported by a new scheme mapping rubbish hotspots from the air. Three charities are joining forces to map the extent of marine litter around Scotland's coastline. The Marine Conservation Society (MCS), Sky Watch Civil Air Patrol and the Moray Firth Partnership have this week launched SCRAPbook, with volunteer pilots and photographers identifying pollution hotspots and litter sinks. Aerial photographs will be fed into an online scrapbook for volunteers, communities, schools and individuals to direct beach clean-up and survey activity. Archie Liggat, Sky Watch Chairman, said: "Our pilots get a unique view of the country's coastline. We fly sorties for many different reasons and are always dismayed by plastic contamination we see floating in our waters or landing on our beaches.” The project’s spokesmen describe the idea as a ‘game changer’, leading enthusiasts to coastal spots where marine litter might go unnoticed.

New youth club for Point
Point could be getting a new youth club, if enough interest is shown at an open meeting on Friday this week. The open night for parents and children at Tiumpanhead Community Centre has been organised with the support of the Lewis and Harris Youth Clubs Association, to gauge demand and find out what is wanted in a new club. Anyone with an interest is welcome to attend from 6.30 – 8pm at the community centre, which is on the site of the former Aird school.

League football
Opening league football matches were completed on Monday night with a 4-1 win at home for Point – two goals from Ally ‘Wally’ Maciver and one each from Elliot Rudall and Cammy Nicolson sealed the result, while Carloway’s Calum Masson scored Carloway’s consolation goal. At Westside there was another home win, Scott Graham scoring two goals to Lochs’ one from Lewis Mackenzie for a 2-1 result. Saturday’s football action is in the Highland Amateur Cup, with four matches due to be played, between Aths and Back, Lochs travelling south to meet Southend and Carloway away to North Uist, while Point are at home again, this time to Iochdar Saints.