The Island Spirit
In the autumn of 2014 a poet and a photographer met in the Lochmaddy Hotel to discuss a wee collaboration and the result, ‘The Island Spirit’ , is now available.
With photography by Jörg Waste, distillations by poet Peter Kerr, and an essay by John Randall, this beautiful book is a collection of photographic essays, each focusing on a protagonist or a group of people living and working in the Western Isles.
Copies are available online: http://www.blurb.co.uk/b/7836068-the-island-spirit
I am thrilled and delighted to be published in the Sma Buiks and Edinburgh Inch series, to be 'scattered like seeds'!
Sgeul nan Eilthireach a dh’fhalbh
à Beàrnaraigh na Hearadh
This Gàidhlig translation of my book about emigration from
the island of Berneray in the Sound of Harris is available
as a FREE download from Smashwords.
1000+ copies have been downloaded since its publication in 2012.
The Story of Emigration from Berneray, Harris
(Berneray Historical Society, 2012)
"Berneray is a small island in the Sound of Harris, between Harris to the north and North Uist to the south of the Western Isles. The island is joined to North Uist by a man-made causeway built in 1999, and also has a ferry connection to, and retains strong historical links with, Harris through both family connections and estate ownership."
"A forty-page booklet is necessarily a condensed version of the stories of the large exodus of island families which took place during the 19th and early 20th centuries, with the earlier emigrations coming mainly after failures, as elsewhere in the Hebrides, of potato crops, kelp industries and reforms of land tenures."
"The book contains eleven clearly written chapters detailing events in the island of Berneray starting with the earliest Neolithic arrivals moving through to the present. Various listed data are accompanied by stories of human events and sketched illustrations. The book is attractively presented, readable and informative. While the writing is without excess sentiment, tales of tacksmen’s and landlords’ treatment of the local people make for sometimes painful reading, and copies in the booklet of letters both to and from Berneray emigrants give a moving testimony of the island people’s efforts to make new lives in strange lands. There are two appendices where emigrations are detailed, and a thorough bibliography of historical sources used."
Copies are available from Berneray Historical Society, price £5 plus postage. Please contact the secretary of Berneray Historical Society at The Nurse’s Cottage, Berneray, Isle of North Uist, HS6 5BD or by emailing