Isles FM News in association with Hebrides News - Friday 14th August 2020
AN LANNTAIR OPENING MONDAY
At 10am on Monday August 17th An lanntair will finally open their doors and say ‘Fàilte’ to you all as they take their first steps in re-opening the islands’ arts centre to the public once again.
The first floor only will be open again to visitors, where you can enjoy the brand new An Lanntair Sketchbook Project exhibition in the main gallery, as well as a look around at what’s new in their Shop.
Following government guidelines, An lanntair will be asking that visitors wear facemasks and adhere to social-distancing measures when inside at An Lanntair. They will also set a limited number of people permitted inside at one time, and ask that visitors follow the one-way system through the main gallery when viewing the new exhibition.
Protective screens have been installed at the reception area, and sanitation stations are available throughout the building for public use.
More information can be found online at
PANTOMINE ON THIS YEAR – OH NO IT ISN’T!
Stornoway Thespians have said that it is with considerable regret that Stornoway Thespians Drama Club and Stuart Morrison Pantomimes have taken the decision to postpone pantomime performances in December 2020 and January 2021.
The current public health situation with the Coronavirus COV-19 pandemic, and uncertainty about future requirements for performances, make it impossible for either group to go forward with preparations for these dates.
Stornoway Thespians are still trying to think outside the box and are hopeful they will be able to work out some Christmas entertainment albeit in a very different form to the usual. Stuart Morrison is planning an Easter performance and is hoping things will be far enough along with the crisis by then for that to go ahead.
Both the Stornoway Thespians and Stuart wish their audiences festive greetings when the season comes, and advise everyone to please follow the guidelines, stay safe, and they will see you all next year.
SAVE UP TO £2,000 WITH TAX-FREE CHILDCARE
As schools returned in Scotland, HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) is reminding working parents they could save up to £2,000 per child per year to pay towards after-school clubs and other childcare services.
Around 110,000 families in Scotland are eligible for Tax-Free Childcare, which can cut thousands of pounds off childcare bills.
All families have to do is pay into their Tax-Free Childcare account and for every £8 that they deposit, the UK Government immediately makes a top-up payment of an additional £2. The scheme is open to working parents, including the self-employed, who earn between the minimum wage and £100,000 per year and have children aged 0-11 years old. Families with a disabled child, aged 0-17 years old, can receive up to £4,000 in government support each year.
You can find out more and apply through the Childcare Choices website (www.childcarechoices.gov.uk).
Tax-Free Childcare is just one example of the support available to families in Scotland from the UK Government. More information on other schemes such as Help to Save and Marriage Allowance can be found here: https://www.deliveringforscotland.gov.uk
CROFTING FEDERATION RESPOND TO UK GOV PROPOSED LEGISLATION ON UK INTERNAL MARKET
Scottish Crofting Federation (SCF) has responded to UK Government consultation on proposed legislation on the U.K. Internal Market.
SCF Chair Yvonne White said:
“Having scrutinised this incoherent white paper at length, we cannot find evidence to support the need for this legislation. The UK Internal Market is undoubtedly important, but so too is the need to maintain our present access to Europe for our high quality beef and lamb exports. The criteria for UK internal trade must be agreed by all four nations, and not be imposed on us.”
Ms White continued:
“In common with other Scottish food producers, we fear that the proposed legislation will lead to a race to the bottom, threatening our high standards in food, environment and animal welfare, thus damaging the image of Scottish produce. These standards are best safeguarded by the Scottish Parliament. Likewise our Parliament needs to retain control over agricultural support, as enshrined in the current devolution settlement. Any weakening of that position will pose an existential threat to the hill livestock sector, which is, after all, the backbone of crofting.”