Day 4 (29 March)
Up at dawn again – too good to miss on my last morning.
On Calmac’s winter timetable the ferry sails on to nearby Muck (population 27) after calling at Eigg, and then at Eigg again on the way back to Mallaig. This means I could choose between taking the boat at 11:40 and seeing Muck, or waiting until its second call at 13:40.
I opted for the mini cruise. There’s no time to get off at Muck – it just leaves again as soon as all the passengers get off and on.
Anyway it was a pleasant sail with a yummy burger on board – although a bit bumpy at times.
Then the train back to Fort William and the long drive home after that. A fabulous wee escape to a special place.
A final footnote about Eigg – in 1997 the island was bought from its absentee owner by the Isle of Eigg Heritage Trust – a partnership between the residents, Highland Council, and The Scottish Wildlife Trust. In 1997 the population was around 65. It had grown to 83 by the time of the 2011 census – an increase of 24%. During the same period Scottish island populations as a whole grew by just 4%.
One of my photos is a commemorative stone erected to mark the community buyout.
Another is a reminder of where the funding came from for the island’s electricity supply. Poignant. No way will London fund projects like that after Brussels stops.
ⓒ iain taylor, 2017