Island at the Edge

Island at the Edge
The Gathering, Cable Bay, Colonsay

Tuesday, 6 March 2012

Its all been going on...

I have been on one of my whistle stop tours of the mainland again, but this time with a very specific purpose!
I stayed with Captain Flack’s sister in law, the delectable Ishbell in the Sgeir Mhaol guest house in Oban. It’s a home from home atmosphere and Ishbell cooks a very, very good breakfast. She is such a welcoming hostess. So if you are on your way to or from Colonsay and find you need somewhere to stay, then this is the place. Ishbell explained how she took over the guest house around 3 years ago and is finally able to put her own stamp on things. She took me to a room she is in the process of ‘doing up’ and boy oh boy, it’s going to look fantastic. I wish you continued success Ishbell, you are a special lady who deserves a break in life, so onwards and upwards...

There are big changes happening at the Homestead, hence the trip to the mainland for supplies of ‘everything’ I could possibly think of and a bit more. For a shopaholic (not) this was no mean feat. This was made especially difficult as my car required attention from a mechanic. (Thank you everyone at Munros for a stirling job completed in a very, very timely manner) 

I strode from one end of Oban to the other no less than four times (I am sure the locals thought I was the latest resident bag lady) laden with goodies and nice things for... Yes you guessed, our new project (one of many during the forthcoming year)
Kapitein and I are set to open the Homestead as a B & B. Adding four more beds, (one twin and one double room, both en-suite – the double room having a bath that holds 2 people, and bidet) to the offer of much sought after quality accommodation here on our wee island. We are set to be ready for the beginning of April. I have sourced ‘quality’ for our guests (as only the very best will do) so, if you wish to stay in our wonderful Homestead, check out the website on and follow the instructions. Then see for yourself this fantastic island and if you are especially good, you may even get to meet the Island at the Edge crew, including Sampster and Wolfie (a more delectable pair you wouldn’t wish to find)You may, if you don’t know them already, get to meet some of the colourful characters that live here on our island, and let’s just see if you can guess exactly who they are from their pseudonyms?  

And don’t forget, to get here, you can take a flight with Hebridean Air Services or sail the high seas with Caledonian Macbrayne, either way, we can pick you up and bring you to the Homestead. What awaits you is excellent accommodation with a superb breakfast and, as an addition, the option of a packed lunch and first-rate home cooked fayre for your evening meal. We can even offer you the use of a vehicle, but if you prefer Archie the Magnificent’s bike hire is just around the corner. What more could the discerning traveller need. We’ve got it all. So if island hopping is on your itinerary this year, why don’t you hop across and see us, where a warm welcome awaits.

We hope to see you very soon...

Aha! No, not the pop group for all of you 80’s music buffs, but aha, Madam Lone Ranger, usually seen with her faithful hound Tonto galloping across the Strand, has been on an epic journey to help out our neighbours on Jura. She is a Doctor (when not out and about on her trusty steed) and a very good Doctor she is too. Well, it took her hours and hours and hours and yet more hours to arrive in Jura to cover the Monday surgery. She set off on Saturday on the flight to Oban, stayed the night, then travelled to Kennecraig, caught the ferry to Port Askaig, then another ferry to Jura. I’ll bet her prospective patients were very appreciative (I know we are here on our wee island)

Well, Kapitein and I discussed this.
There isn’t a direct link neither by sea nor sky from our wee island to Jura, nor by sea to Islay, we only have 2 scheduled flights to Islay during the week, I can see how this posed a problem for Madam Lone Ranger.

I knew Kapitein had been very, very busy in his inner sanctum, sometimes you just don’t want to know what he gets up to in there, as you just never know what he will come up with next, but this is the best so far!

 I have mentioned we had a naval architect here on a couple of occasions. Well, boat plans, specifications and everything else is now ready. Kapitein has designed a vessel for the high seas and a more fantastic craft you couldn’t wish to see and just perfect for Colonsay. A dedicated fast, all-weather landing craft for ferrying passengers, freight, wildlife tours, diving trios and a scheduled service to and from our neighbouring islands. The list is endless as to the capabilities and versatility of this vessel. This will also offer full time employment opportunities, bring more people to our island and allow us more access to the near islands and beyond.
Following a recent meeting with Pedie Popped Out (who I suspect may have wished to pop out during the meeting) as part of his role as Local Development Officer (LDO) he has been tasked with sourcing the appropriate funding for the build. C’mon Pedie let’s make this happen! If nothing else, but in support of ‘our’ much needed vital links with the outside world. Had this boat been operational, then Madam Lone Ranger would have had only a short trip across the high seas to cover the surgery at a fraction of the cost! So let’s get to it!!

If you would like to see this Ferry in operation, then show your support by sending an email to: Kapitein is doing his bit and lobbying in the Capital (Edinburgh of course) for his fast and versatile Ferry to be included in the draft Ferry Review.

And finally, it is that time of year again when the Festival of Spring is nearly here. Come along and enjoy the myriad of activities on offer this year. From knitting courses, for beginners, intermediates and experts (yes, I have something up my sleeve for the expert knitters) to foraging, walks and even bread making with ‘Lovejoy’!
For those who sign up for the knitting course, there will be a bonus this year - our lambing should be in full flow. What a treat to see these wee small black bundles of fluff and a glimpse into the future – next year’s fleeces and wool!

The 2012 Colonsay Festival of Spring is the next big happening!

28th April to 18th May 2012

A fantastic array of events & activities are planned - from guided walks and foraging sessions to art classes, photography and craft workshops.

Go to for a full timetable and more information.

Booking for activities & workshops are now being taken.  

Some will have restricted places available – so book now to avoid disappointment!  All contact details are on the website.

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