MP’s port of call on Tiree

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Argyll MP Brendan O’Hara visited Tiree High School last week, before staff and pupils took part in an eight-mile sponsored walk.

Tiree Community Development Trust also updated Mr O’Hara, and Oban councillors Jim Lynch and Roddy McCuish, on its plans to buy two island harbours and buildings at Hynish.

The trust has secured funding to upgrade Scarinish and Milton harbours, and hopes to take up community ownership soon, under a subsidiary called Tiree Community Maritime Assets Limited.

Thanks to a £200,000 grant from Marine Scotland, urgent repairs to Scarinish harbour were completed earlier this year, which rebuilt and stabilised the pier with reinforced concrete, resurfaced the deck and added timber buffers and five new ladders.

The tenders are now out in the £1.2 million project to regenerate Milton harbour, which currently houses six full-time fishing boats.

The development works will consist of raising the height of the structure by one metre to prevent waves overtopping, extending the pier to allow for two additional berths, creating a ‘dogleg’ to provide some shelter, constructing a catch sorting and packing shed.

Funding was sought from Marine Scotland and Highlands and Highlands Enterprise and the remaining £232,455 will come from the Tiree Windfall Fund.

The trust explained on its website: ‘The advancement of this project will come as a huge relief to our local fishermen who have been working with dangerous and inadequate facilities for many years now. It is hoped that work will start in spring of 2019 and take around six months to complete.’

Trustees also raised concerns about where funding for such projects, currently provided by the European Union, will come from after Brexit.