Local News for Tuesday 21st August 2018

Na h-Eileanan an Iar SNP MP Angus MacNeil has welcomed confirmation that Scottish and Southern Electricity Networks (SSEN) has submitted the Needs Case to Ofgem for the Western Isles transmission link.

The link is vital to allow new renewable projects to progress in the islands.

Mr MacNeil said: “I am very pleased that the Needs Case has now been submitted for the transmission link and I am particularly pleased that the proposal is for a 600MW link allowing for maximum benefit for island communities.

“The construction of the link is still dependent on the success of island projects in the CfD auction and regulatory approval, however this is a very welcome significant step.”

The 'Iolaire' tragedy will be commemorated in the Hebrides this year but the story of the 'Iolaire' will also be remembered ten thousand miles away from the Isle of Lewis in towns and cities across Australia and New Zealand by way of a unique First World War exhibition.

'Women of Empire - The Homecoming' tells the stories of the women of the 'British Empire' at the close of the First World War using original costume of the time.

Exhibition curator, Scottish born Fiona Baverstock chose the story of the 'Iolaire' for the lives of so many women in a small community were affected by this tragic event.

Amongst the women was Christine Smith from the village of Earshader whose husband Kenneth was amongst the men who would not bring in the New Year of 1919.
As the last surviving widow of the 'Iolaire' tragedy her story is told in this exhibition where she stands proudly wearing her 'shawl' of Harris Tweed generously donated by the Harris Tweed Authority in Stornoway.
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Gaelic writer, singer, actress, broadcaster and political campaigner, Dolina Maclennan was brought up in Marvig, Lewis, Dolina was introduced to drama and the great Gaelic bards at the Nicolson Institute. Dolina sang for Scottish Ballet in the Gaelic production, An Clo Mòr, before touring theatres as well as venues throughout the Highlands and Islands in 1970.
Her first TV work was Beagan Gàidhlig, the first ever Gaelic teaching series. She appeared in STV soap, Machair, which ran from 1992 – 1998 and has had many more film, stage and TV appearances over the years, including the hit comedy series, Still Game.
However, what Dolina is known for most is her role in the ground-breaking 7:84 Scotland production, The Cheviot, the Stag and the Black, Black Oil which changed the face of Scottish theatre and politics and toured Scotland and beyond in 1973-1974.
Dolina commented: “As my birthday falls on January 1st, it is always hard to distinguish it from the usual Hogmanay celebrations.
“So, this is the very first time in all of my 80 years that I have been rewarded with what I always wished - that my birthday was on a normal day like 15th September! I am hugely honoured by the generosity of the Blas Festival and look forward hearing my favorite singers and musicians and meeting old and new friends.”
Dolina @ 80 takes places at 7.30pm on Saturday 15th September at the Woodlands Centre in Stornoway.