Isles FM News in association with Hebrides News - Thursday 25th June 2020


Comhairle nan Eilean Siar have approved a Plan, to aid the recovery of the economy of the Outer Hebrides.

The Plan in partnership with Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE), focuses on three key areas– a community recovery, a green recovery and a digital recovery. Under each of these themes a range of actions have been identified

The Recovery Plan sees collaboration with key sectors of the economy.A series of economic forums will be established to gather industry intelligence and to allow the private sector, to help influence and focus the direction of recovery efforts. A high-level Outer Hebrides wide economic forum is anticipated with forums in Barra, Uist and Harris to ensure recovery efforts are being prioritised across all the islands.

Cllr. Roddie MacKay, Leader of Comhairle nan Eilean Siar, said:
The Comhairle and HIE have sought to be proactive in support of businesses by delivering the various Government support schemes and developing a local, tailored support package for any business, that may have been ineligible for the Government schemes”.



NHS Western Isles and Comhairle nan Eilean Siar are raising awareness, of a scam in relation to the Scottish Contact Tracing Programme.

The NHS Scotland Contact Tracing Programme is extremely important in the fight against coronavirus. Unfortunately, criminals will take opportunities to defraud people of their money, or access personal details.

Health boards have a variety of mechanisms in place to reassure people that Contact Tracers are legitimate, including call back options, visible numbers, and specific location and date information.



Na h-Eileanan an Iar SNP MSP Alasdair Allan, met virtually with Islands Minister Paul Wheelhouse MSP to discuss ferry services to the Western Isles.

CalMac will be moving from a winter-style timetable from 1 July to a ‘shoulder’ timetable over subsequent weeks, with an aim to match the expected return of tourism by July 15. Physical distancing measures will mean reduced capacity across the network and concerns have been raised over how that reduced capacity will be managed.

Alasdair Allan MSP said: “Many jobs in the islands depend on tourism, so we all need to see the industry operating again here as soon as it is safe.
“At the same time however, people in the islands who have been in lockdown for four months have a legitimate concern to be sure that they can get a ferry ticket to see family members again, now that this is an accepted reason to use the ferry. This is an issue I have been raising this week with ministers.
“This is a changing picture, but with restrictions on ferry capacity being eased in coming weeks, I hope that we are now seeing a clearer picture of how the ferries will operate, and how a balance will be struck to ensure safety, maintain a lifeline service, and restart our local economy as soon as that is safe.”



Funds Raised for Macmillan Cancer Support

Local singer songwriter Calum Martin, hosting the Comhairle Cèilidh last Saturday, raised over £700 pounds for the local branch of Macmillan Cancer Support.
Over 1000 live viewers showed their appreciation by donating to the local charity.

Chair of the local Macmillan Cancer Support Group Maggie Martin said:
“All of us at Macmillan Cancer Support Western Isles are absolutely delighted with the way Calum's Ceilidh lifted everyone’s spirits and our STOIRM CD, has boosted our fundraising to just over £2000.



The Met Office has issued a yellow warning for thunderstorms in the Western Isles. The Met Office weather warning covers today Thursday 24 June and tomorrow Friday 25 June, with a return to normal weather expected on Saturday 26 June.

Thunderstorms bring several potential risks. Intense showers can result in significant amounts of surface water, which may impact driving conditions and pose a slight risk of flooding. Lightning and hail also bring the risk of temporary disruption to utilities and some structural damage.