Local News for Monday 22nd October 2018

The Labour Party in the Western Isles has called for SNP Ministers to “come clean” on the terms of the PFI deal under which the ‘Loch Seaforth’ is sub-leased by Caldonian MacBrayne.
Labour Candidate Alison MacCorquodale said: ‘Secrecy can no longer be tolerated. The people and businesses who depend on a reliable service from the Loch Seaforth need to know the full story.’
She added: ‘As far as we know, the Stornoway-Ullapool route is now hostage for decades to come to the performance of a vessel which is showing alarming signs of unreliability at a very early stage in its life. I ask the MP and MSP for the Western Isles to join me in calling for Scottish Ministers to permit total transparency around the terms of the Lloyds Bank deal and to provide a statement on their contingency plans if the current uncertainty – and associated chaos – continues.’

Faclan: The Hebridean Book Festival is to include a brand new Fringe programme.
The first Faclan Fringe will consist of four events from 1st to 3rd November, complementing the festival’s author events and film screenings, whose theme this year is ‘fear’:
Author Peter May will personally host a tour of locations from The Blackhouse, the first book in his internationally successful Lewis Trilogy.
Composer Jessica Danz will perform Under the World, an evening of original music and song at St Peter’s Church in Stornoway, inspired by the archetypal story of the descent into the Underworld
Maricruz Vasquez will create a Day of the Dead Mexican lunch in An Lanntair’s café bar on Friday 2 November.
The festival’s closing party at An Lanntair, Monster’s Ball, which will feature live music by Hebridean band the Howling Lords.
Faclan will run from Wednesday 31 October to Saturday 3 November and is supported by Creative Scotland, Comhairle nan Eilean Siar, LEADER and Natural Retreats. For full programme details, visit www.lanntair.com/faclan

The cultural connections to nature through Gaelic are being promoted with new teaching materials from Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH). The project was launched recently at the Royal National Mòd in Dunoon by Angus Campbell, SNH Deputy Chairman.

Part-funded by Bòrd na Gàidhlig and produced in collaboration with social enterprise Earth For Life, the bespoke learning resource will help to connect young people with nature through sustainable foraging. The resource will equip Gaelic-medium teachers with the necessary skills, knowledge and vocabulary for wild plant identification and use.

The project has been coordinated by a team from Scotland’s Natural Larder – an SNH-led partnership which aims to reconnect people with local, seasonal and wild food, and encourage sustainable use of natural food resources.
The project with Bòrd na Gàidhlig was jointly funded under the Gaelic Language Act Implementation Fund 2018-19 programme.