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Screen Tiree Goes Viral

T3 Trainspotting Tiree from jack lockhart on Vimeo.

One of our local community groups, Screen Tiree has recently gone viral with their own remake of the iconic, Trainspotting scene.

The popular scene which sees cast member Ewan McGregor running through Edinburgh streets has been reshot here on Tiree, featuring islanders and members of the Screen Tiree committee.

Derek Campbell took on the lead role of ‘Renton’ even throwing in a stunt man move of being hit by a car. The 44 second clip follows, Derek, Jo Vale, Mairi Forbes and Forrest Lockhart running past the Co-op and down towards the Scarinish Hotel, featuring the original soundtrack of ‘lust for life’ and an alternative Tiree version of the voice over: “Choose life. Choose gale force winds. Choose whole families of cyclists going really slowly on single track roads. Choose power cuts. Choose no signal on your mobile phone. Choose ferry cancellations due to adverse weather conditions. Choose rusty cars. Choose wellies and a fleece. Choose your future. Choose Tiree’.

Screen Tiree set up just over a year ago with the aim to reintroduce a form of cinema club and movie screenings to the community. Since then they have put on 14 films and organised a variety of opportunities for children through the ‘into film’ initiative. The latest film that was shown was the Trainspotting sequel, T2, where the audience received the first glimpse of the local scene.

The clip was created entirely by the Screen Tiree committee, filmed in only a couple of hours using a mobile phone. However, it has since been uploaded to social media and has now been viewed over 10,000 times through shares on Facebook and mentioned in The Oban Times and in national newspaper, The Sun.

It was even retweeted by the author of Trainspotting, Irvine Welsh, who simple commented ‘love it’. Fantastic! The film will also be screened at a film festival in Italy next week!

Screen Tiree hopes to continue making as well as screening films as it’s such a great way of bringing people together for a great time! With the success of their first effort, I am very much looking forward to seeing what else can be produced. The Screen Tiree programme of screenings has now finished for the summer and they are planning a new season for the autumn although they do have a few rainy day titles up their sleeve. To keep up to date with all the latest events and screenings search for ‘Screen Tiree’ on Facebook and look out for local adverts within An Tirisdeach.

Tiree Community Council

The well-attended June meeting of Tiree Community Council was also its AGM, and I gave a run-down of the campaigns with which we have been involved over the year.

These included facilities for the disabled on the ferry, the withdrawal of security at the airport, proposals for a cash machine for the bank, a scheme to create a Marine Protected Area around the island, organising the Remembrance Day service, the loss of the school library service, abandoned trailers in three locations, an area next to Pier View in Scarinish where builders’ waste was lying, buying the old phone boxes from BT and setting up the project to design a flag for Tiree.

We also set up a ballot concerning the beach huts at Gott and Balevullin, and presented the results to the planning officials of Argyll and Bute Council. It has been a busy year, and it is hard now to imagine life on the island without a community council.

I told the meeting about the resignation of John MacCaskill from TCC. John it was who first had the idea of re-forming the council, and his energy brought together the first group of us to stand for election. Since then he was Vice-Convenor for several years, and has also chaired the Tiree Transport Forum. John’s major success was to persuade the authorities that Tiree needed two planes a day, something long taken for granted by Campbeltown and Barra. He also fought hard to improve signage on the roads. John has now decided that his new job managing the airport has made it impossible to devote enough time to TCC matters, and he is reluctantly standing down for the moment.We would all like to thank him for his considerable political achievements.

We discussed the triangle of land to the west of Pier View,which belongs to Highlands and Islands Enterprise. Both the Tiree Trust and Tiree Community Business had made an offer to buy the land in the past few years for use as a play park and community garden. We have learned recently that the ground is now under offer from MacLeod Construction of Lochgilphead. MacLeod’s, the builders of the original ‘Tank Farm’, have proposed three further houses with workshops attached. The way that this process was handled has raised questions about how HIE negotiates with communities, and we have written to them to ask them to come to the island to explain how this decision was taken. Under Part 4 of the Community Empowerment Act (2015), community bodies have a right to buy land that is “neglected”.

We remain concerned about the pier head, which struggles to cope during peak season. The car park is often full and cars have to find space where they can on the surrounding ground. CMAL, who own and manage the land, have written to the Community Council detailing their investment plans for the pier and surrounding area. These amount to over £8 million pounds between 2013 and 2022, including the replacement of much of the link span deck. While this is extremely welcome, we still feel that congestion and parking at the pier head is not getting the priority it deserves. There have also seen worrying reports about corrosion affecting the columns supporting the pier itself. We have asked for a meeting with CMAL and will persevere with these two important concerns.

Efforts to design a flag for Tiree took an important step forward recently with a visit from an expert from the Flag Institute. Philip Tibbetts told us how to organise a successful competition, how long it would take and how much it would cost. We now know how to proceed, and hope to have the official unveiling next summer.

We discussed the state of the police mortuary at the airport. This has no running water and is powered by a generator. While needing a considerable amount of work, we decided that, as it was used solely by the professionals involved, this was a matter that was outside our remit.

We had also set up an online survey about setting up a cash machine on the island. 96%of those who responded said they would use one, with comments like: “I am often asked if there is an ATM on the island. It would be very handy to access cash without having to make a purchase to get cash back, and I am sure it would benefit local businesses and increase transactions on the island generally.” It was pointed out that post offices were another useful way to access one’s account.

The bins outside the gates of the waste facility in Gott, which had been removed by Argyll and Bute Council because of indiscriminate dumping, have now been reinstated after representations by TCC.

We decided that, due to the hectic Tiree summer-fest, our next public meeting would be in September. The Council would still be working behind the scenes, however, and if there were pressing matters, we could still call a meeting in the next two months.

Dr John Holliday (chair), Rhoda Meek, Ian Gillies, Aisling Milne and Jessie Gray were present.

Tiree Ranger Service Update

One aspect of my job that I find particularly rewarding is meeting people.

Offering opportunities to get outdoors and enjoy being active in nature is core to our remit as a Ranger Service. I’m delighted to tell you that, since the beginning of our events and guided walk programme in mid-April, almost three hundred guests and community members have joined in. This is an incredible show of support for Tiree Ranger Service, and I am extremely grateful to each and every person that has taken part. As the summer jollies approach and Tiree girds itself for the height of the visitor season, I thought it would be nice to reflect on the activities and experiences that we have shared so far:

The first event to take place was our Great Easter Eggcase Hunt on April 14th. This event was jointly led by myself and Willie Mackinnon – Tiree’s Youth Worker. Though I produced a written summary at the time, I hadn’t fully appreciated the long term positive impact that this session would have. The event was enormous fun and I had a great time leading it. However, what has struck me since is the number of families that now actively look for (and hopefully record) eggcases as they spend time on the beach. Young people often approach me in the Co-op to tell me about their most recent finds! Genuinely, I couldn’t have asked for a better result. On the day, the weather was rather changeable: Instead of collating our finds at the end of the activity, some families took them home to record, while others left the fruits of their labour with me to be processed in one large batch. I must say, well done to those families that went ahead and submitted their findings (presumably after a cup of something hot!) – it was great to see the new records popping up online. When I finally completed this task for the pooled Gott Bay samples, I was left with 137 records. These are currently being added to the Shark Trust website:

•120 Smallsoptted Catshark eggcases •6 Thornback Ray eggcases •9 Spotted Ray eggcases •2 Cukoo Ray eggcases

I was also given one Blond Ray eggcase and three Flapper Skate eggcases from unknown locations around Tiree – these were recorded separately. The enthusiasm engendered by this event is almost worth the perma-layer of sand that has ingrained itself into my carpet, and the hours of trying to untangle and measure the sodden eggcase mountain… If you’re interested, there are eggcase ID leaflets (with information on how to submit your findings) available from my office at the Tiree Rural Centre.

Our next session was Beach Bingo – a family scavenger hunt to spot and identify different items on the seashore. In essence, this was an excuse to dole out a few sweeties (!) but the children did practice identifying different colours and textures – or different types of seaweed, seashell and gull for the older participants. This event caught the tail end of the Easter break and attendance by visiting children and younger residents was good.

The third event of the year, Seòid a’ Machair, was a guided walk jointly led by myself and Donna MacLean – Tiree’s Music, Culture and Communications Coordinator. We explored the formation of Machair; learning how traditional crofting practice supports Tiree’s impressive biodiversity. Janet Bowler gave us an introduction to the rare bee species that she monitors here, and spoke about her ongoing project to encourage the planting of native wildflowers.

With Donna’s expertly prepared handouts and pronunciation guides, we learned the Gaelic names for many species that we encountered on the way – in addition to hearing about the language’s history and modern use on the island.

On May 12th, I led a short but terrifically enjoyable Wellness Walk down to Lag naCleite. Though the walk wasn’t intentionally aimed at viewing wildlife, there was simply too much to ignore! Highlights included lovely views of Great Northern Diver, Common Eider, Arctic Tern, Lapwing, Redshank, Ringed Plover, Turnstone, Dunlin and a tiny Lapwing chick.

The following week, I was joined at Loch a’ Phuill by an enthusiastic group of Learner Birders.We got to grips with the basics of bird identification using our ID books and the new Tiree Ranger Service telescope; looking at a number of different wading and water species. A particular highlight was a small party of distant waders –which turned out to be a late passing group of female Black-tailed Godwits (thanks to John Bowler for following this up).

One of these birds was wearing leg rings, which indicated that she had originally been captured by French ringers. The same group had been spotted in Ireland just days before. Building on the enthusiasm of Learner Birders, our next session took us to the windy tops of Ceann a’Mhara for some Super Seabirds. Though the focus of this walk was primarily cliff-nesters, we experienced a diverse array of plant life and some very interesting natural history finds – such as the brightly coloured shells of predated seabird eggs. There was quite a bit of rain; but the walk was still one of my season highlights so far. In addition to learning about our environment, Tiree Ranger Service is here to encourage people to look after it.

On June 3rd, around 40 community members from across the island joined a Tiree Community Development Trust Big Tiree Tidy session to clear Crossapol Beach of debris. There is a lot of enthusiasm, and there are lots of great ideas, within our community. Watching people and their children come together and take time out of their day to help was extremely rewarding. A special mention needs to go tour local Argyll & Bute Council Workers, who very kindly offered to come and collect the material from the roadside. This made a difficult job much easier and was greatly appreciated by everyone.

June 8th saw me out and about early, placing riddles and clues along an 8km cycle trail for the children of Tiree High School. The Tiree Treasure Trail activity was part of a two-day programme to help P7 students through their transition to S1 after the summer break. The questions and clues had a broadly environmental and healthy living theme, and the students did a brilliant job of both finding and solving them – in fact, I think I rather underestimated their abilities?! I’d like to thank the children for being so sporting, and for their good behaviour and friendly manner throughout. To quote one student it was “slightly better than doing maths” – be still, my ballooning ego.

I’d also like to thank Will Wright of Tiree Fitness for his contribution of spare bikes, helmets and equipment checks; plus the other staff leaders (includingWillie, our island Youth Worker) for helping me to guide the group around Tiree’s roads safely. (…only one bike disintegrated, so I consider that to be a resounding success.)

Our Guided Walk Programme is now available to download from www.isleoftiree.com, in addition to being on display around the island in printed form. These walks will be running weekly on Thursday afternoons, weather and circumstances permitting.

Events, such as those featured above, normally run on Fridays. Currently, they are advertised locally and through our social media accounts. The first Guided Walk around Salum and Vaul produced amazing behaviour from the Salum Common Seal colony – with animals play fighting and leaping out of the water in the shallows.

Three routes will run on rotation until further notice – but please note that advance booking is essential! I’ll look forward to welcoming you and your guests along,

Dredging up Island Anger?

We were shocked by the hurt and anger – made very clear in your pages – that arose from our letter about finding a Orkney-registered scallop dredger in Milton Harbour.

One Tiree fisherman took it as a “patronising… personal attack“. It wasn’t intended as that, at all, but we nevertheless would like to apologise to him for the “cheek”. As long-term visitors, we have huge respect for all who make their living on Tiree, by land or by sea, and some idea of how difficult that can be.

It’s also true that, given the damage wrought over decades to banks in the Hebrides by big scallop dredgers, one small one isn’t going to make much difference now. Not so long ago, island boats would go out to the Scarinish banks to long-line for flat-fish, ling and even cod. That’s not possible, in part because of the dredging. But as Frazer MacInnes pointed out in his letter, we can’t turn the clock back.

Another fisherman wrote a lengthy attack on us, on ignorant tourists who question things and indeed on most marine science, in the Oban Times, which you also printed. This is the response that we’ve sent to that paper:

Angus MacPhail did a lot to illustrate the desperate PR problems of modern commercial fishing with his article “A Threat to Fragile Island Economies”. It firmly told off a tourist who dared to question scallop dredging for arrogance, ignorance, superciliousness, narrow-mindedness and a lack of education. Well… at least Mr MacPhail was listening. I’m that tourist.

With my wife, I wrote a short, polite letter to Tiree’s excellent An Tirisdeach newssheet where we questioned the arrival of a scallop dredger (from Orkney) at a Tiree pier. I had family links with Tiree, friends who are fishermen, and we have been visiting for many years. Along with all of marine science I know well enough what devastation the dredgers have wreaked there and around Britain.

Sadly, many small-scale fixed-gear fishermen and divers throughout Argyll and on the Clyde (where we live) have long been too nervous to speak up against this uniquely destructive fishing method. Someone needs to.

But Mr MacPhail says tourists cannot. We don’t have a right to do anything except take in the view. He ignores the fact that we are fishermen’s customers and that we are also tax-payers who subsidise commercial fishing – not least the improvement of fishing piers at Tiree and elsewhere. Mr MacPhail goes on. Marine science on dredging is not credible (if he disagrees with it). Britain’s most eminent professor of marine and fishing policy is simply “manipulating data” to support his “anti-fishing agenda”. There should be no Marine Protected Areas – fishermen can police themselves. Our view on dredging – which echoes that of the Marine Conservation Society, Scottish Environmental Link, Marine Stewardship Council, Greenpeace, Friends of the Earth and others, all science-based – is mere “moral posturing”. Sounds a little like Mr MacPhail pulled up Donald Trump in his trawl.

It’s not funny, though. This industry that has always shouted down those who dare voice concerns about a resource that belong to all of us. If Britain’s fishermen had proved good custodians of the sea and its contents over the last century, we might trust them a bit more. You only need follow the news to see how big scallop dredgers shamelessly flout the rules on gear and environmental protection – and we find out only about those that are caught.

This is little to do with “fragile island economies” – most large-scale scallop dredging is about big East Coast companies, big profits and a workforce many of whom are from abroad. I have the utmost respect for Tiree’s fishermen and all people across Scotland who make their living from the sea and land in a sustainable way – and I know many who do. I would suggest Mr MacPhail curb his temper and takes a measure of the width of his own mind. Don’t we all want pretty much what his father would have wanted – a healthy sea, recovering stocks and a fishing industry with hope for the future?

Dredging Response

In response to the tourists, James and Linda Laikie’s, cheeky letter which was a personal attack on me, my fishing boat Venus 11 K574 and type of fishing.

I find it very weird that people choose to holiday in a place and write a very patronising letter to the local newsletter complaining about the locals way of life when they should be enjoying themselves!

“The sensible folk like the Tiree fishermen”. That obviously implies that me trying to diversify and grow my business to be more multipurpose, i.e., creels and clams, is not sensible. Doing this gives me different fishing options at different times of year. Working mobile gear makes it easier for me to work a more structured week to be able to get more time ashore with my young family. Also I can tap into the very abundant resource that lies not even a mile off the shore in some places round the island, which for the last 20 odd years has been left to visiting boats from other parts of the country.

Scallop dredging is not a new thing on Tiree!! People often get carried away with this word ‘Sustainable’, and are very naive when it comes to listening to extremist conservationists, scientists and the like. Everything is sustainable if you look after it! If fishermen take all the stock off one bit of ground then there will be nothing left for next year. It is in our best interests to look after our own waters and the stocks within them. After all it is not just this year that we have to sustain our catches, but for the rest of our careers and that of the people coming behind us whether that be sons, daughters or new entrants.

This year we have opted-in voluntarily to increase the minimum sizes of the shellfish. Fishing is quite similar to crofting in some ways. You have to look after the ground to reap the benefits. Crofters turn the ground, sow crops and fertilize so they have sufficient food to keep livestock through the winter. Scallop dredging has been happening around the coast for decades and is very sustainable in its current state.

“Hand dived scallops are all that anyone who cares about the sea and its creatures should eat” – I hate to tell you but around 2% of the UK scallop fishery is caught by divers, the remaining 98% caught by dredges. Divers simply cannot supply the demand on their own. We all care about the sea and its creatures, but we also have to make a living. In my view conservation is best left to the stake holders of the ground and people who know then area.

In places like Tiree the weather is very much a form of natural conservation. When is it going to be time to start conserving the people and their way of lives?? Very soon every wee creature and organism both ashore and at sea will be conserved but there will be no people left in these areas to work them or contribute to the local economies.

For some more information look on the Fishing for the Truth website. This covers all types of fishing. http://www.fishingforthetruth.co.uk/environment/scallop-fishing

Well, when I eventually find the Parrot referred to in the Laikie’s letter I will be sure to offer him/her a tasty, sustainably dredged Tiree scallop to enjoy.

Regards

Coinneach MacKinnon

Skipper/Owner of Venus2 K574

Tiree Pupils Chosen as Poster Competition Winners!

An Tirisdeach is delighted to report that 4 Tiree Primary School pupils have been chosen to appear in the Edinburgh Festival Schools Poster Competition.

Iona Weatherhead (P2), Liam Walker (P3), Maurice Wright (P2) and Jemma Kavanagh (P3) are the four lucky pupils whose posters were chosen out of a massive 6000 plus entries.

Their poster designs will now be displayed throughout the summer (from June 6th) in Dynamic Earth in Edinburgh, along with the other 150 that were chosen.

This is a massive achievement for Tiree Primary school and Shona Johnston, head of the art department commented ‘To give a sense of perspective on how amazing their win is, in 25 years of teaching I have had 4 pupils shortlisted so to have 4 winners in one year from our tiny school is nothing short of incredible.’

The School Poster Competition is open to all schools throughout Scotland and is run in conjunction with Edinburgh Festival which takes place throughout August in the capital. The designs will be displayed throughout this time and they will also be available to view on the Edinburgh Festival website when it goes live later in the month.

An Tirisdeach would like to say a huge well done to all four pupils, Iona, Liam, Maurice and Jemma. If you are in Dynamic Earth over the summer make sure you have a look for their submissions.

Dreadful Dredging

Dear Editor,

How sad we were, on a recent visit to Milton Harbour on Tiree, to see an Orkney-registered scallop dredging boat tied up to the pier.

We do hope this supremely destructive form of fishing hasn’t been taken up by sensible folk like the Tiree fishermen and divers whom we’ve met over many years of visits.

Hand-dived scallops are all that anyone who cares about the sea and its creatures should eat. Ploughing up the seabed for them is – according to Professor Callum Roberts – like cutting down a forest to catch a parrot.

 

The Hynish Centre Story

As many readers will know, the Hebridean Trust, a Scottish Charity, has offered to gift the village of Hynish to the Tiree Community and discussions are at an advanced stage with the Tiree Community Development Trust. From the mid 1980’s The Hebridean Trust acquired the village and over the past thirty years raised almost three million pounds to renovate it. We thought readers would like to know a little more about the work of this Charity that also owns The Treshnish Isles.

In the late 1980’s the Trust renovated the old ruined store rooms down by the pier and in 1990 HRH The Princess Royal opened the buildings that were by now a 20-bed centre with dining-room, sitting-room and games room known as Alan Stevenson House or the Hynish Centre. The main objective of the Centre has always been to subsidise visits from disadvantaged and disabled young people, especially from Scotland, but also from the rest of the UK. Wherever possible these young people would be given either heavily subsidised or free holidays.

Monica Smith was appointed the first Warden, a post she held until ill health lead to her retirement in 2014. During her enormously successful time as Warden the clientele grew to cover a wide range of visitors. By 2012 a major refurbishment of the building had taken place creating accommodation with accessible showers and bathrooms more suitable for the 21st Century. To do this the Trust raised £500,000, which also enabled them to produce the ‘Treshnish Isles Exhibition’ in nearby buildings.

The Trust’s policy has always been to use local building firms to carry out all their work at Hynish and this project was no exception. When Monica retired, Fiona Malcolm took over the role of Warden and has continued Monica’s good work. From their wide range of visitors the Trust has built a strong relationship with The North Argyll Carers in Oban. For the third year a group of young carers will visit Hynish at no charge this summer. Carers involved in end of life care in Oban will also be at Hynish for free visits.

Here are some comments made by three groups:

North Argyll Carers – “Everyone talked about how much more confident they felt about themselves and their abilities.” “This has been the best holiday I have ever had.”

Oxfordshire Children and Family Care services – severely disabled children, this year is their fourth visit to Tiree. ‘The laughter and the smiles far outweighed the tears. “Thank you for bringing me on this holiday I have never done anything like this before” said H. Z shouts of “I’m happy, I’m happy” must have been heard 10 times a day! Cheeky big beaming smiles from J every time he seized the opportunity to lie in the sea, sometimes fully clothed.’

The Junction Foundation –‘This trip is the highlight of the year, due to complex family situations, poverty and disadvantage, these young people do not get to go on holiday.’

Finally a big thank you from the Hebridean Trust to all the individuals and organisations who help these young people have the holidays of their lifetime.

Local Surfing Success In Thurso

An Tirisdeach are delighted to report that two local boys have recently been awarded two first places in their respective classes at a prestigious surfing competition up in Thurso.

Finn MacDonald, who turned 16 on the day of the competition and Ben Larg, 12 both travelled to Thurso to take part in the 2017 Scottish National Surfing Championships and Finn placed first in the under 16s section and Ben was crowned first in the under 18s section, an impressive achievement for someone of just 12 years old.

This is the second year the boys have competed in the competition, having secured podium positions in last year’s event too. Both boys have been surfing on Tiree, through Blackhouse Watersports and the local Surf Club for many years and 2016 saw them compete in professional competitions for the first time. They have travelled as far as the Azores in Portugal, where they competed in the World Junior Surfing competition and Morocco, where the European Surfing competition was held – both boys placed on the podium at each of these events. They are also currently working on a bid to represent Team GB at the 2020 Tokyo Olympic games, the first-time surfing will be included in the games.

Both boys are definitely making ‘waves’ at home and further afield and have once again done Tiree proud with their efforts and achievements! Well done and congratulations to both Finn and Ben.

Tiree Community Council Report

Ideas about a new housing development in Scarinish, a presentation from the new Ranger Stephanie Cope, and disappointing news about an ATM cash machine: these were some of the topics discussed at the April meeting of Tiree Community Council.

The April meeting was delayed by a week because a combination of travel setbacks had meant that the Council no longer had a quorum. The meeting went ahead a week later with one loyal member of the public in attendance (thank you Robert!). TCC had been notified that unaccompanied young people would no longer be allowed on flights to Glasgow because all airline staff did not have the necessary clearance.We agreed to write to Loganair for clarification.We had received a letter suggesting that the lorry drivers’ rest room on the vessel – a facility required by law – should also be available for disabled travellers, and that the disabled toilet door should bemade easier to open.CalMac had responded positively to these ideas. The suggestion that an afternoon sailing should be part of a future winter timetable was thought by John MacCaskill, chair of the Tiree Transport Forum, to be unlikely: they had been asking for this for years with no success.

TCC had recently met Councillor Roddy McCuish. He showed us draft proposals to build three house/workshops on the triangle of land between Pier View and the road. This provoked some discussion as TCB and the Trust had both had offers to buy this land from HIE turned down. We decided to look into this. After months of pressure, the corner of land cluttered with rubbish left over from the building of Pier View has substantially been cleared. The electrical box and cable, however, are still there, and we would continue to press for this to be removed.

Councillor McCuish also told us about discussions concerning the transference of the West Highland Housing Association Housing stock to the Tiree Trust. He advised us that this might be too large a task for the Trust, but that a management agreement might make more sense. We also discussed taking the Scarinish public toilets under community control, and would see how much interest there was in the island for this. The next day we met with our MSP Mike Russell. TCC has hopes tomeet the Transport and Islands Minister,Humza Yousaf, on Tiree, and have asked Mike Russell to keep the matter in the minister’s diary.

We passed on a number of complaints about the long time some customers on Tiree had to wait for a BT connection.Mike Russell asked us to pass on complaints at an early stage as he had good contacts with the company.

We expressed our disappointment with the decision to keep the proceeds of the Crown Estate – principally rights arising from the coastal seabed – in Edinburgh. Russell said he was sympathetic to the view that Tiree should get its fair share of profits and has written to the minister involved.

Stephanie Cope gave a very interesting talk about how she is developing her job as Ranger. Erosion at beach access points in Crossapol, Balevullin and Balephuil is a concern. She is continuing the programme of guided walks during the summer and is initiating a series of welcome evenings, including talks about the environment, history and culture, during the main summer holiday period. We had asked the Royal Bank of Scotland about the possibility of installing an ATM cash machine at its Scarinish branch. They have now written to us to say that this will not be going ahead. We were disappointed and will pursue this matter. It was suggested that ATMs are often placed in places other than banks, and this may be a way forward.

The Tiree flag subcommittee is making progress in setting up a flag competition, and is currently waiting for a decision from the Windfall Fund.

The meeting closed at 9.30pm. Dr John Holiday, Rhoda Meek, Ian Gillies, John MacCaskill, Jessie Gray and Aisling Milne were in attendance.

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