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God’s Islanders: The Story of Gigha
The island of Gigha lies just off Tayinloan on the Kintyre peninsula and is the most southerly of the true Hebridean islands. The name Gigha is thought to have come from the Norse, and may mean ‘God’s Island’, ‘The Good Isle’ or, more probably and prosaically, ‘The Place of the Good Harbour’. Gigha has an astonishing twenty-five miles of coastline and a great number of small, sheltered harbours. This is the story of the people of Gigha, based on an examination of changing settlement patterns on the island from prehistoric times to the present day. Analysing the written and recorded history in conjunction with the oral and popular traditions of the island, Catherine Czerkawska provides an in-depth account of clan ownership of the island and changing allegiances up to the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Her study carries through to the present day, examining the relationship between a contemporary community which is struggling to become viable once again, and its own rich past. “The Story of Gigha” is the story of this part of Scotland, in miniature, and God’s Islanders’ exploration of the history of its people is also an examination of much wider issues, trends and challenges affecting the whole area.
From the abandoned crofts of Mingulay and the standing stones of Orkney to the white beaches of Colonsay and the spectacular Cuillins of Skye, this is a complete gazetteer covering all of Scotland’s many hundreds of islands, including those which are uninhabited and those which are notoriously difficult to reach. Packed with information on access, anchorages, points of historical or natural interest and things to do and see, this compendium provides information for touring, for browsing, for reference, and for all of those travellers who wish to experience some of the most beautiful and remote places in the world. Illustrated with full colour illustrations and relief maps of all the main islands, this is both an impressive work of reference and a fascinating personal view of Scotland’s distant outposts.
Jura Language and Landscape
The book, a joint project between the Feolin Study Centre (Jura) and the House of Lochar Publishing Company, (Colonsay), was written by Gary McKay (Ph.D. Geography) and features photographs from his 2004 landscape photographic exhibition entitled, “Jura 365”. The success of the exhibition resulted in calls for a book featuring the “best of” the photographs and some commentary as well. Gary McKay has researched and compiled, where possible, oral stories about each place featured in the book and carefully translated the stories from their original Gaelic into English, while trying to retain their original flavour. Coupled with short, incisive and personal introductory paragraphs, the book is not an elegy for a Hebridean island that has lost its original culture, but a proud and defiant shout of cultural self-awareness.
The Spirit of Jura
Sixty years ago, the beautiful island of Jura provided George Orwell the solitude and inspiration he needed to write his political masterpiece, “Nineteen Eighty-Four”. In 2006, the Scottish Book Trust established their Jura Malt Whisky Writers’ Retreat Programme to give writers the same peace and space, and it is now recognised as one of the best creative opportunities available. In 2007, authors Will Self, Janice Galloway and Philip Gourevitch took a month out, writing and living in the beautiful Distillery Lodge, to work on specially commissioned stories, published here for the first time. Poems, essays and artworks from other writers and artists, including Liz Lochhead and Kathleen Jamie, who have enjoyed a stay on Jura are also included in tribute to Jura’s awe-inspiring landscape and the creativity it stimulates. Beautifully illustrated throughout.
This guide introduces the islands by way of a series of 26 graded walks (easy to strenuous) of various distances (2-13 miles) which will appeal to walkers of all ages and experience. After short preliminary sections on the islands, Stephen Whitehorne introduces the main points of interest (scenery, wildlife human settlements, etc.) and goes on to provide essential information for the walker – OS references, distances, terrain, convenient stops and various options. As well as sections on natural history and geology and Gaelic language and culture, the book also includes indispensable practical information on weather, local transport, accommodation, access and safety considerations, thus enabling visitors to make the very most of their visit to the islands. This volume covers the following islands: Arran – Islay – Jura – Colonsay and Oronsay – Kerrera – Lismore – Mull – Iona – Tiree – Coll – Bute – Gigha – Staffa
A Year on Easdale
This is a detailed and illustrated account of a newly married couple’s first idyllic year on the tiny Scottish island of Easdale. It all began over 20 years ago with a chance meeting on a train heading for Scotland. Garth Waite, a widower in his late 50s, was on his way to a holiday on South Uist; Vicky, a widow in her mid-fifties, was off to the island of Seil in search of peace and quiet. They talked, exchanged names and addresses, and began a friendship that 18 months later led to marriage. Their honeymoon of course had to be spent in Scotland, and it was while in a cottage on Easdale that Vicky had her great idea: “What about retiring early and coming to live here?”. It was a decision that they were not to regret, and the wish to record the pleasures, sights and sounds of their first year on Easdale suggested a way of pooling their talents. This book is the fruit of Garth’s lifelong love of the natural world – he was already a keen naturalist at the age of five – and of Vicky’s passion for painting.
Ulva – As it Was
Ulva lies almost as if folded inside the great island of Mull. It has great natural beauty and an extraordinary story attached — a story never before told. So dominated is the island by its great neighbor, that its written history is a matter of fragments, oral tradition, folklore, hearsay, and legend. Mackenzie weaves these together with his own reminiscences and recollections.
Ferry Tales of Argyll and the Isles
Ferry Tales of Argyll and the Isles is a fascinating record of the ferries that ply the waters off the west coast of Scotland, and which have been part of the fabric of life in that part of Scotland for generations. For visitors these ferries are the ideal, and, in some cases, the only, way to get about. In this new and expanded edition, Walter Weyndling, who worked with the ferries of western Scotland for many years after the Second World War, recounts with warmth and humour the real story of the ferries, their routes, the people who ran them, the people who used them and the communities they served. He includes a wealth of stories gleaned from archives and personal experience. The result is a marvellous portrayal of a subject of enduring interest for local inhabitants and visitors alike.
The story of Islay, Jura, and Colonsay is one of the most fascinating among all the Hebrides. They have had substantial human occupation since earliest times and man has left many relics across the islands. With over 80 line illustrations and extensive maps and plans, the book brings to life these beautiful and fascinating islands. This work explores the history of the Hebridean islands of Islay, Jura and Colonsay. It covers the human occupation since earliest times, the relics left on the islands, monasteries, forts, carvings, artefacts of mesolithic times through to the modern-day distilleries of Islay and Jura.
A small book, but loaded with gorgeous colour pictures of this beautiful Island in the Hebrides. Has a Useful Information and Places to visit Guide. Gives you a crash course of Place-Names and their pronunciation, so you won’t be murdering the Gaelic. Includes of map, gives information of Medieval ruins, the Islay distilleries – which produces fine Single Malt Whisky. Gives you a real flavour of this delightful Island. The book is soft sided and lightweight so if you plan to visit, the book is easy to take along.
This book, the second in our island tribute series, extols the attractions of the Isle of Mull. It is the first book about Mull to have been published since 1972, and is the first ever with colour illustrations. The island, the largest in the Inner Hebrides apart from Skye, appeals to visitors in many ways. The shapely mountainous areas, the stepped silhouettes of the lower hills, the islets and skerries immediately to the west, the striking cloud formations and the clean colours of everything, enchant and entrance those who see them. The author describes these attributes of Mull sensitively, assisted by splendid colour photographs and other illustrations, pointing to the sense of space and serenity so often yearned for by town folk; and he touches on the story of Mull, island activities past and present, and on the warm welcome and the hospitality accorded today to visitors by the residents.
Samuel Johnson and James Boswell spent the autumn of 1773 touring the Highlands and the Western Islands of Scotland. Both kept detailed notes of their impressions and later published separate accounts of their journey together. The account of their great tour is one of the finest pieces of travel writing ever produced: it is a historical document and also a portrait of two extraordinary personalities. The juxtaposition of the two very different accounts creates a portrait of a society which was utterly alien to the Europe of the Enlightenment, and straining on the brink of calamitous change. It is suitable as a key text for school and college courses in literary or social history studies. Samuel Johnson is the author of “A Dictionary of the English Language” and “The Lives of The English Poets”. James Boswell is the author of “The Life of Samuel Johnson”.
This is a very fine book and most beautifully illustrated with many colour photographs, drawings, maps and diagrams. If you have visited Iona and would like a memory this is ideal; if you have never visited then this will whet your appetite. The text runs to some 20,000 words and covers the sacred history and the people of the island both past and present, the wildlife, surrounding area, and even touches on the geology. There does not seem to be any aspect of the island and its life, which has been omitted. The text is direct and very well written by someone who clearly loves the island and has expressed that in research and much hard work to do justice to a very special place to the Church in Britain.
An account of the history and archaeology of Coll and Tiree and the neighbouring Treshnish Isles. Erskine Beveridge discusses the domestic, pre-Christian and Christian sites of each, he also provides sections on Clan history and the Norwegian occupations of the Hebrides.
This book pays tribute to the remarkable Inner Hebridean island of Staffa. Its geological structure of basaltic columns, which includes Fingal’s Cave, is famous around the world. As a former owner of Staffa the author is well equipped to describe not just the unique rock formations but also the natural history, the stream of illustrious visitors, and island’s haunting atmosphere. He describes how people have managed to reach this rather inaccessible attraction throughout the two centuries since it’s discovery.
This text contains a comprehensive history of the slate industry in the west of Scotland, complete with a detailed and vivid account of the communities on the Atlantic bound islands of Easdale, Seil, Luing and Belnahua. The author is the Easdale Island Folk Museum archivist.
From their first sight of Tirefour Broch, dominating approaches from mainland, visitors to the Isle of Lismore can explore an outstanding heritage of monuments to the past – Bronze Age cairns, medieval castles, the Cathedral of Argyll, carved graveslabs, deserted townships and watermills, not to mention a Stevenson lighthouse. Talking to islanders, they soon realise that there is also a long and unbroken tradition of Gaelic culture. This is a guidebook to the story of Lismore, placing the events in the context of the times. Because of its strategic position at the mouth of the Great Glen and its fertility, as a limestone island, Lismore played an important part in the prehistory and early history of the West Highlands and Islands, not least as the headquarters of the community of Celtic monks founded by St Moluag.
Island of Kerrera
Small as it is Kerrera grandly reflects the image of Highland life down the years. The island has belonged to the MacDougall family for many centuries and the author draws on family documents and letters to provide an intimate history of this tiny island.