District news – Week 25, 2019

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Dalmally’s Got Talent 2019 will take place this Saturday, June 22, from 6pm in Dalmally Community Centre.

Categories include primary school age solo, high school age solo, adult solo, or groups.

All the money raised from the event will go towards Dalmally school.

There will be a raffle, as well as refreshments on offer.

To find out more, email dalmallysgottalent@gmail.com.


An afternoon tea, raffle, and tombola has raised £755 for the Port Appin playing field and playgroup.

The event was held in the field on June 2 between 2pm and 4pm.

The organisers said: ‘A huge thank to all who donated prizes, baked and came along to support us, it’s very much appreciated.’


The most recent Strathfillan Community Council meeting took place on May 6.

The monthly police report revealed that there had been 35 calls on the Strathfillan beat since the last gathering.

A rough breakdown of these, with disparity due to multiple calls regarding same incident, shows that there were six road traffic-related calls; one for housebreaking; four for road accidents; one for mountain rescue; one for a dead golden eagle; two for non-payment of fuel; one for a domestic incident; four concerned calls; two parking complaints; and one for a sudden death.

The next Strathfillan Community Council meeting will take place on Monday July 1 in the Crianlarich Hall from 7.30pm.


An over-65s information day will be held in The Gaelic Centre in Bowmore this week.

The informal event starts at 11am tomorrow (Friday June 21) and will cover home adaptions, private sector housing grants, energy efficiency, attendance allowance and pension credit.

Speakers will include home improvements officer Moyra  Paterson, welfare rights officer James McCorkindale and welfare rights assistant Kerry Gillespie.

Donald Ewen Darroch has been commended for his contribution to law and order on the Isle of Jura with a MBE. NO_T25_JuraMBE01
Donald Ewen Darroch has been commended for his contribution to law and order on the Isle of Jura with a MBE. NO_T25_JuraMBE01

A Police Scotland special constable, who provides the only policing presence on one of the Hebridean islands, has been awarded an MBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours.

Donald Ewen Darroch has been commended for his contribution to law and order on the Isle of Jura, where he has been a volunteer officer for more than 22 years.

He said: ‘I am extremely grateful to have been nominated for this honour, and it was a complete surprise to receive the notification several weeks ago. It’s a role I very much enjoy and I’m glad I am able to do so much for my island community. I joined, many years ago, as a special at the same time as my cousin, after the local inspector asked us to consider it because the existing special constable was retiring. I’ve been volunteering ever since.’

With the nearest regular police officers based on Islay, Donald Ewen is often the first point of contact when islanders need help, and has been involved with a huge range of incidents, from mountain rescues to knife crime and road traffic incidents. When officers have to travel from Islay or the mainland, Donald Ewen often accompanies them on their duties.

The 63-year-old, who has two sons who are both full-time officers with Police Scotland, said he’s been very lucky to have experienced so much in the line of duty.

‘Because I’m the only officer permanently based on the island, I’ve got to do a lot more than many other specials ever would,’ he said. ‘I’ve been called out to situations that a special constable in another location would possibly never experience, but also got to assist with major events like royal visits, and the World War One commemorations on Islay.’

He added: ‘I think people on the island often appreciate having a well-known face to deal with, especially in situations where I’ve had to deliver bad news.’


The winner of the Kilmore 100 Club winner for May was J Hall, while R Clunie and A Morrison were the June winners.

Western Isles

North Uist was launched into the space age last week when plans to build the UK’s first vertical commercial space port were unveiled last week.

The consortium behind the spaceport is proposing to build a new spaceport at Scolpaig on the north-west coast of North Uist.

Comhairle nan Eilean Siar has agreed to invest around £1 million to purchase the land where the launch facility will be constructed.

From this base, rockets will be launched vertically, offering low-cost, safe and efficient access to sun synchronous and polar orbits.

Discussions have already begun about proposed test launches from the site later this year.

Further community consultation events on the planned activities and the Spaceport1 project will take place over the summer.


Communal bins at Uisken Beach, Mull, will be removed because of persistent fly-tipping.

The bins were provided for the houses at the end of the road leading to the beach and home owners have now been given individual bins.

The fly-tipping has brought complaints from residents and has meant the council has been forced to step up its refuse runs in the area.

The most recent incident involved building materials.

Councillor Roddy McCuish, policy lead for roads and amenity services, said: ‘It is very disappointing that such inconsiderate behaviour pushed us to take these steps. These were domestic refuse bins. To use them for the disposal of waste that should be taken to one of our amenity sites is shameful.

‘Not only does it cause distress to local residents, it incurs additional costs at a time when the council is struggling to fund its most vital services.

‘Perhaps individuals could reflect, should they choose to voice concerns about any potential reductions in services, that irresponsible actions like this do not help us provide a sustainable service on Mull.’