Royal Navy Just Can’t Keep Away From Colonsay

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Rescue crews from HMS Gannet at Prestwick made three emergency trips to Colonsay in June – up two on their previous month’s total.
The most serious was to airlift a fisherman to safety after his boat capsized leaving him stranded on a rock off the west side of the island near Port Mhor.
The alarm was raised by George Leppard who saw the stranded fisherman waving for help and the Sea King Helicopter and Port Askaig RNLI lifeboat were both ...

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Conference Remembers Colonsay Pioneer

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A fascinating conference took place mid June organised by the Island’s Book Trust to celebrate the life of Donald Mackinnon – first professor of Celtic Studies at Edinburgh University. As well as exploring the professor’s life and work it was a celebration of Colonsay, its culture, heritage and natural beauty.

This conference marked 100 years since Donald Mackinnon’s death. A Colonsay man, born in 1839, raised in Kilchattan and schooled on the island, he bore witness to famine, emigration and the ...

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Kiloran Hedgehog – Latest News

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Despite being fantastic animals with an essential function in the right environment, hedgehogs are not a native species to Colonsay and Oronsay. By Scottish law they should remain that way. No new information on how the creature ended up at Kiloran has come to light.
The introduction of hedgehogs has had severe consequences on other West coast islands. Hedgehogs are ground predators for many ground nesting birds such as lapwing, dunlin and redshank. These birds have suffered declines due to ...

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Great Island Turnout for the First ‘Big Lunch’

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On June 1st Colonsay held its first ‘Big Lunch’ – it is a very simple idea from the Eden Project aimed at getting as many people as possible across the whole of the UK to have lunch with their neighbours annually on the first Sunday in June in a simple act of community, friendship and fun.
There was a fantastic turnout, approximately 80 people. The range of food was absolutely amazing, everyone made a real effort.

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Nature Notes – From the RSPB

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So far summer on Colonsay and Oronsay has been full of sightings both expected and unexpected. We have two new breeding species for the reserve- a pair of sparrowhawks and great skuas. Izzy had a great sighting of two storm petrels off the southern coast while fishing, and a few days ago I spotted a swift flying over our silage fields.
We have managed to do some moth trapping here and were pleasantly surprised to find a small elephant hawkmoth ...

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Sports News – Golf

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In the month of June, an eighteen-strong raiding party left the shores of Cholbhasa, bound for Eileann Ila, writes our Golf Correspondent Scott Weatherstone. Their challenge was to play The Machrie, one of the finest but trickiest golf courses in Scotland; it has a lot more long rough than our course; it’s 1,000 yards longer and has deep bunkers; there isn’t an easy hole in the whole course.  The date chosen? Friday the thirteenth; what could possibly go wrong?

The eleven ...

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Makeover At The Pantry

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There has been a makeover at the Pantry with Gavin gearing up for the season.
First to arrive was the island’s first barrista style coffee machine, , and then a new design of mug to go with it.

Gavin says: “2014 is going to see a lot of changes to the business; I am very proud to have such a unique business on such a small island; I want everyone to appreciate the small space we have and enjoy their experience ...

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Piershed Tales

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The piershed at ferry time is the place to find out what’s going on – sometimes the stories are even true!
*A commercial diver found a very rich scallop bed yards from the island shore at (withheld)* A yacht dragged its anchor and was only stopped half a mile from the pier when it went through a patch of thick kelp*Sports day in July is going to be bigger and better with a Commonwealth Games grant to help*Jim is gearing ...

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Community land ownership survey finds real economic benefit

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Community Land Scotland, the representative body of Scotland’s community land owners has published economic indicators data of community ownership. 
The report demonstrates remarkable results showing that community ownership can out-perform the past private ownership of the land in question.
Among the key results for 12 communities operating in some of Scotland’s most remote areas is:
• Over 300 new or refurbished housing units and house plots delivered 
• Owners direct employment up 368%  to over 100 jobs 
• Business turnover ...

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Scottish Government review on land reform backs more community ownership

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The long awaited final report of the Scottish Government Land Reform Review Group is recommending ways of helping the country’s communities, rural and urban, achieve the First Ministers Target of having 1,000,000 acres of land in community ownership by 2020.

The report is of great interest to the people of Colonsay, already proprietors of land on the island through the Colonsay Community Development Company – with aspirations to purchase more.

The report is short on details as to how this target may ...

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Spring Festival Wakes Up The Island With a Bang

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The annual Colonsay Spring Festival, which finished Mid May – saw large numbers of locals and visitors alike getting up close and personal with the Island flora and fauna, and much more.

Walks, talks and rambles saw a host of experts showing off Colonsay’s Hebridean highlights to appreciative audiences. Many people new to Colonsay expressed amazement at the huge range of plant and animal life waiting to be discovered.

In addition to nature there were classes in baking, cooking, foraging for wild ...

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Heritage trust WW1 exhibition

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An exhibition featuring the stories of the men who left Colonsay to fight in the First World War never to return is underway on the island.

Entitled ‘Colonsay Remembers’ the exhibition featured photographs and biographical details of the dead.

The stories behind the names recorded on the island war memorial in Scalasaig are told in a book by Alan Davis called Colonsay’s Fallen – available in the bookshop.

 

Also on show is the remains of a huge shell believed to have been fired ...

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