Hynish Centre Web Site
In our appeal to grant making trusts we aim to match lottery funding
to further our objectives for the islands. These include the conservation
and stabilisation of archaeological remains, continuity in monitoring
and conserving the nationally important seabird colonies and other
wildlife, and minimising the impact of visitors while encouraging
the use of the Treshnish Isles as an educational resource for the
general public and scientists.
The Treshnish Islands provide breeding habitat for internationally
important concentrations of sea birds including guillemots, manx
shearwater and storm petrels.
The Hynish Centre now has its own web site. We are proud to
be running one of the best group accommodation facilities in
the Hebrides and want to tell the world about it! A combination
of design and quality in the buildings, stunning location and
excellent staff is on offer to educational or leisure group
Today very few schools or training organisations can afford
to have their own outdoor activity facilities. At Hynish we
provide a range of opportunities, as wide and uninterrupted
as the ocean horizons of Tiree, so you can get the most out
of your students' or leisure group's stay. On the web site we
take the leg work out of organising your trip and show you that
distance is no excuse for not visiting Tiree's miles of beautiful
Atlantic beaches next summer.
With its long hours of summer sunshine and restful tranquility,
Tiree has long been Scotland's best-kept secret, so we recommend
you visit before too many people get to hear about it!
College Enjoys Tiree Partnership
Ten years after the Alan Stevenson House was opened, The Hebridean
Trust continues to provide opportunities for children from inner
cities to experience adventure holidays on Tiree. Last year school
children and young people stayed in the Hynish Centre for 11 weeks
during the summer and we are hopeful that there will be even more
this year. We asked Dundee College, one of our regular visitors,
why Hynish is so special to them:
Dundee College, with 23,000 enrolments, is one of the biggest of
Scotland's 43 Further Education institutes, and has enjoyed a long
partnership with the Hebridean Trust. The College has been running
Special Programmes for 20 years and this unit presently caters for
between 80 and 100 students. Since Alan Stevenson House first opened
parties of students on these programmes have enjoyed residential
visits to Tiree.
"We give careful consideration to these trips and many factors
have to be taken into account in making a choice", said lecturer
Hazel Reid. "Having been on residential trips with activities organised
by staff and instructors we have found that the freedom offered
on the island is far better".
"We can explore, cycle, build a fire on the beach at night and
make our own entertainment. There are many things we like about
Tiree, first and foremost we like Monica who has a very friendly
manner and always makes a great hit with our students. They always
remember her because she takes time to spend with us - even out
of working hours. For young disadvantaged people there is no doubt
that a trip to such a place is a wonderful experience. Our students
live in the most deprived areas of our city and would never in
their lifetimes have this kind of opportunity. We feel it is a
very valuable thing to do and hope to continue using the house".
|For more information
on Tiree and the Hynish Centre
please send us your address for a copy of our full colour
Isle of Cana - St.
Edward's Tower Survey
|Scaffolding will be re-erected around the tower
It looks likely that St Edward's Centre, Sanday, Isle of Canna,
will have scaffolding around the tower again early this spring.
The reason is a mysterious leak in the tower during heavy rainfall.
Despite our best efforts we have been unable to trace the problem
and so we have decided to bring in outside consultants, Unick Architects.
Our design and building team are working closely with the consultants
to get a solution to the problem which will include carrying out
a thermographic survey of the building. The survey will establish
the sources of water ingress and provide recommendations on how
to tackle it. Meanwhile we would like to thank the National Trust
for Scotland for their continued help (and patience!) and in particular
the NTS warden at St Edward's, Shona Quinn who has provided invaluable
The process has been a useful learning experience for all of us.
When working on grant funded projects we have to make an assessment
of the likely contingency required for unknown costs. Historic renovation
work can be risky in this respect and the correct procedures need
to be in place to make a realistic evaluation of the level of risk
involved. We will keep you in touch with our progress throughout
Isle of Tiree
Sandaig Visitor Numbers up on Last Year
It was a good season at Sandaig museum with donations up by
a third on the previous year. Not only does this reflect the
busy tourist season Tiree enjoyed last summer but also the enthusiasm
of the volunteers and the attractive displays.
|Thatching maintenance is required at least
every two years at the museum
Visitors are impressed by the intimate homely feel when they
step inside and comment on how much they enjoy a friendly discussion
of local history with our curators. Thatching is always an issue
at Sandaig Museum. With the possibility that our thatcher may
retire in the not too distant future we are hoping to contract
someone else on the island and are investigating the possibility
of providing training.
Hynish attracts around 5000 visitors a year, a significant contribution
to Tiree's growing tourist industry. People come to enjoy the unspoilt
The restored buildings of the shorestation evoke an era of pioneering
industrialism and the romance of one of the world's finest lighthouses
some 10 nautical miles from the shores of Tiree. The Hebridean Trust
plans to improve public access to Hynish, providing WC facilities
(with wheelchair access), a ramp at Alan Stevenson House and much
needed car parking space.
|For more information
on Tiree and the Hynish Centre
please send us your address for a copy of our full colour
See end of the newsletter for full details of how to Join
the Friends of the Hebridean Trust and the benefits of membership.
Progress on Lead Roof at Upper Square
We are looking towards the next phase of work at Hynish. As well
as improving physical access we are proposing to enhance the experience
of visiting Hynish by providing a heritage trail with interpretation
and renewing the Skerryvore Lighthouse Museum. There is also potential
for a visitor's centre, shop and picnic area.
|The Shorestation at Hynish is popular with
visitors to Tiree
A key part of this renewal will be to renovate the shorestation
facilities, which include a unique hydraulic system for cleaning
sand out of the harbour.
We invite readers to send us their ideas on how Hynish can be improved
for visitors while retaining its character as a township and home
to some 12 families.
|The new lead roof at Upper Square introduces
modern design features whilst retaining its historical character
The works to the lead roof at Upper Square are nearing completion,
which will allow the interior refit of the dwellings to take place
during the stormier months of the year. Although the property is
listed grade A, and the quality of the original work over 150 years
ago, is exceptionally high some changes have been included to improve
the lifespan of the structure. The original consultation document
produced in November 2000 tries to tackle the failings of the original
These include; creep/fatigue (where the lead roof expands and
contracts without being able to move freely over the base material,
condensation (due to lack of ventilation in the roof void) and capillary/wind
driven rainwater penetration (which in combination with the condensation
has caused extensive rotting of the roof timbers). All these issues
have been tackled within the constraints of matching the original
character of the building and the end result is a superb roof that
will probably last four times as long as a typical home roof.
Hebridean Trust People
Ian Boyd is a long-standing member of the Hebridean Trust's
Council of Management and is our chief environmental advisor. With
his father, the late John Morton Boyd, Ian is co-author of "The
Hebrides, A Natural History". He has recently moved from The
British Antarctic Survey, in Cambridge, to become director of the
Sea Mammal Research Unit in St Andrews. The SMRU website contains
a wealth of information for research students http://smub.st-and.ac.uk
Michael Stanfield is a founder member of the Hebridean Trust
and Chairman since its inception. Hebridean homeowner for many years
he is a member of the National Trust for Scotland Canna Advisory
Group. Mike has personally raised millions of pounds towards our
Alan Smith is a founder member of the Trust. His family
connection to Tiree goes back to the 19th Century. He is also proprietor
of two large media agencies.
David Christie has been a Council member since 1998. He
was educated at two of Glasgow's Universities and taught at George
Watson's where he acquired a love of hill walking. He is a keen
island goer, taking every opportunity to visit the Hebrides. He
is Warden (Headmaster) of St Edward's School, Oxford
Ian Rees is Executive Director and Editor of The Hebridean
Victoria Fletcher is Project Officer for Hynish. She has
an MA in Heritage Management from York University.
Monica Smith is Warden and caterer at The
Hynish Centre since it opened in 1992 she holds an HND in Hotel
Catering and Institutional Management from Queens College, Glasgow.
Frank Brown retired as Honorary Treasurer this year and
we have not been able to find a human replacement! The office is
now equipped with computerized accounting which Frank insists he
is too advanced in life to learn (even though he has family links
to Microsoft). Despite the reams of reports that the computer is
capable of turning out we shall miss Frank's accounting know how
and sage advice.
The Hebrides covers a large geographical area, home to communities
separated or joined (depending on your point of view) by wide stretches
of open ocean. With a name like the Hebridean Trust we might be
expected to be of a comparable size to our geographical remit but
the reality is quite different. We are a small organisation with
little core funding (this always seems to be running out!) As such
it would be a mistake to look at our achievements in terms of the
physical impact they have on the region as a whole. Instead we work
to carefully target funding at inspiring projects, aiming to raise
support for our work and encourage an investment of effort and optimism
that goes beyond our own projects.
If we can inspire others then we have achieved our aim. In my short
period as executive director of the Trust I have seen many things
that make me feel optimistic about the future of the Hebrides and
it has been a great encouragement to learn that we are not alone.
On another optimistic and more personal note I am pleased to announce
the birth of my daughter, Amanda, in September. As I write she weighs
13lbs and sleeps for about 7 hours during the night!
Amanda, aged 5 months
Celebrating Ten Years of Restoration at
|The old stables (above ) and old
storerooms (below) at Lower Square, Hynish, were in a ruinous
state before The Hebridean Trust successfully secured funding
for their complete restoration
||The £1.1 million restoration
programme transformed the old stables into housing accommodation
and the old storerooms into the Alan Stevenson House activity
This newsletter includes
photographs courtesy of Michael Stanfield, ARP Lorimer and
Associates, Ian Rees, Derek Wolstencroft, and Dundee College
Join the Friends of the Hebridean Trust
We need your support! We invite you to join the Friends of The
Hebridean Trust where you will be helping us to conserve the unique
Hebridean way of life and environment. Your membership
or donation can help develop new projects, to ensure future
generations will continue to enjoy a rich and varied experience
of life in the Hebrides.
See our pages on membership
and learn more about the other ways you can
help the Hebridean Trust.
The Hebridean Trust
North Parade Chambers
75a Banbury Road
Tel/Fax: 01865 311468