A view on Fishing,Community and Life on the NW coast of Scotland

You need a day like today to give you a wee lift while you wait for the bad weather to break. Another day of it and we are under way again. Yesterday was geared to having a full day off and although it did not feel like it I think there must have been some benefit. The only active part of the day was taken up with the dog family and getting them out and about amongst the wild flowers that are still going strong.

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There is a little rise across the road and down towards the shore where a little meadow is growing

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and it nice to see some areas retaining a natural cover and still being grazed during the winter months.

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Looking out to sea it was not so pleasant seeing the Castlebay dredger that was scraping the grounds on the west side of Raasay last week pass to the north. And sure enough she dropped her dredges for a tow in the Bay. Did not stay long as there is simply too much gear for her to plough her destruction. Community fisheries should mean just that. Just sad to see a boat from elsewhere fish in such a way that is detrimental to the local economy. And this a couple of days after my comment that there is too much gear in the water for them to tow the dredges.

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This morning involved a meeting with a couple of guys from AECOM who are doing a survey to see if and how we can use the excess electricity generated by the community hydro scheme. Sean turned up and I found it fascinating and just a little bit inspiring seeing how everything is progressing, without much input from me I have to say. It does appear feasible that we can run lines to various locations and put meters in houses after the main supply meter already there and sell cheaper, greener energy when it is available. Also it will be controlled by simple radio switch from one source to another meaning a continual supply but cheaper the more the local supply is used. There are so many ideas out there now and it was a really positive discussion. Robert was telling us of a new storage heater that is being developed that gets charged up and holds the heat so much longer as it is super insulated. This is geared to the wind turbines making them more efficient with the obvious problem of intermittent wind energy. It is a pity these benefits could not be more equally shared rather than the huge subsidies going to the utilities and land owners instead of spread through the fragile communities making them more robust and allowing them to help themselves, while producing green energy. Maybe that’s addressing the inequality problem a little too much. Stopped off at the shop and had a chat with one of Applecross’ long time residents and it kept the buzz going telling her how you do get a lift from people working at the positive all the time, working how to do things and bo***cks to the politicos. If it works, is green and makes a little money for the community it is worth the hassle you get. The only slight frustration was how do you get it over to everyone that it is a genuine community company and to sell the perception that it is not any one’s but every one’s. She immediately came back with but that is always what “they” will think. The good thing about the Company is that you have a limited time as director and three of us will be standing down, so new people will have to come forward and take it the direction the community want. Far better than inherited positions.

Dropped of the last of the langoustine at the Inn this morning, it is now weather dependent to keep them on the Board and unfortunately did not have any for Greg and the Malawians, some of whom were visiting the school.

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Just happened to be taking Dougal and Co out for a bounce around when I saw the flags on the land rover and, as they were leaving nipped in, to get the camera for the flags and as they were taking photos so was I and then we were entertained to a “farewell?? dance” as they left by the gate, followed by the kids. Just another reason not to feel grumpy about the weather.

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Comments on: "Hydro, The Malawians and more Flowers." (4)

  1. Suzanne Gillies said:

    Great photos!! Yes, this was a farewell boat dance.

  2. Had a great visit from the Malawian delegation at the Heitage Centre a couple of weeks ago, really nice people.

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