always something new to discover.
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Rum Jubilee 'Street' Party - June 2012


Rum Jubilee celebrations (c) Georgina McMillanThe Village Hall deck played host to the Rum community's Jubilee celebrations. Pimms, jelly and sponge cake were all enjoyed on the warm Tuesday evening to celebrate the Diamond Jubliee of Elizabeth I. A big thank you to Vikki and co. for organising the event.






Isle of Rum Croft to Let - June 2012


The Isle of Rum Community Trust has one bare land croft available.

Croft No.2 is a bare land croft extending to 5.36ha on semi-improved sloping ground overgrown with rushes, and will require a significant amount of work to improve it to anything beyond rough grazing.  However, the croft enjoys an open, south facing aspect with fine views across to the peaks of Hallival and Askival, up Kinloch Glen, and out to Loch Scresort.

Crofting offers the potential for both new housing and new economic opportunities, and two of the three crofts on Rum are now let.  Nic Goddard, the island’s newest crofter, is very excited to be part of the latest chapter in Rum's journey.  She says; “This is an amazing place to raise our children, make our home and create a living for ourselves. Within a very short time we already feel part of the community and very much at home."  Their vision for a low impact, self sufficient, sustainable lifestyle in an unspoilt corner of the UK was perfectly answered with the opportunity of becoming crofters on Rum.  “The island provides the perfect backdrop to make our dreams come true".

Interested parties are encouraged to visit the island before making an application for the croft, and community members will show people around and answer questions.

Rum Croft 2 (c) Georgina McMillan

This is an exciting time to be part of the small but growing community on Rum, with several development projects underway and a number of new residents settling here over the past year.  We are looking for people with enthusiasm and vision to join us on our adventure!

Please contact for an application pack.  Deadline for applications to be submitted: Friday 31st August.  Applicants may be invited to an interview in September.


Climate Challenge Fund wins - May 2012


In April IRCT was awarded a grant of £19,475 from the Climate Challenge Fund for the Greening Rum project. This will enable us to continue heading towards a more eco-friendly existence here on Rum. The money will help with the following projects:

We will be able to invest in a Community Polytunnel, giving everyone the opportunity to have a small plot to grow their own fruit and veg in, thus helping to reduce some of our food miles.

OWL monitors will be issued to all households. These will show us the amount of electricity we are using at any one time and will help us to be more aware of our consumption rates and hopefully make us more efficient.

Our Wildlife Garden is going to have a rotor composting bin. As the garden is a central area to a number of households and close to the shop, we hope a communal composting area will help us reduce our food waste to the benefit of the wildlife garden.

Finally, and most excitingly, the grant will allow us to not only double glaze our Village Hall, but top up the insulation to make it much cosier and more fun to use in the winter.

We look forward to seeing these changes take place and will report on their progress.

Deer Observation Hide at Kilmory - May 2012


The start of May saw the completion of the long talked about deer observation hide at Kilmory.  The hide was built by Sandy Fraser for the Edinburgh University Red Deer Project, funded in part by The Guinness Trust.

Kilmory Deer Hide (c) Ali MorrisThe hide has two sides, one reserved for researchers with the other always open to the general public. There are great views of the Hide from Kilmory Graveyard (c) Ali Morrisbeach and the river all the way up to the mountains in the south and it is a commanding location for getting up close and personal with wildlife.


The researchers have put up a selection of informative posters and would like to encourage everyone to leave their nature observations on the sheet provided as otters, eagles, basking sharks and, of course, deer can regularly be seen from this location.


Deer Study Area sign with hide in distance (c) Ali Morris
There is also a new sign at the start of the Glen Shellesder path , informing people that as they carry on to Kilmory, they are entering the deer research area.
For more on the deer project visit their website here

New Tenants for Croft 3 - Rum welcomes the Goddard Family - May 2012


The Goddard Family (c) Nic GoddardGoddard's new home arriving to Rum (c) Nic Goddard

Rum welcomes its newest residents - the Goddards from Sussex - who were successful with their croft application earlier in the year. They've already been out exploring the island, experienced their first Rum ceilidh and taken part whole heartedly in community events.They've also been getting used to the 'Rum factor' and finding their feet and from the looks on their faces, they're definately enjoying themselves. The 'Goodards' are certainly Good value! - welcome to Rum  – we wish you all the best with your new life on your Rum croft.

To follow the Goddard's blog, click here


Egg Thief caught out on Rum - May 2012


On 28 May 2011, a local Rum resident observed a man acting suspiciously in a remote common gull colony on the Isle of Rum.  Alison Morris, a long-term resident of the island and a field researcher for the Red Deer Project based at Kilmory was out in the study area conducting individual deer checks during the calving season. 

‘I was sitting out on the hill, tucked in tight as the weather was pretty poor for the time of year when I spotted a man entering Shamhnan Insir from the east.  This is in no way unusual, other than causing some disturbance to the deer that I was observing and I waited for him to pass through the area.  I thought nothing more of it until he started walking into the middle of the gull colony.  I began watching him more intently, wishing he would move on quickly so the gulls would be off their eggs for the shortest possible time.  However, he began acting very strangely, dashing about in the colony, picking up eggs for some minutes before disappearing into a black-house.’ 

Being out of radio contact with the rest of her team and with a very patchy mobile phone signal, Ali continued with her deer checks despite being very nervous and spending the rest of the day looking over her shoulder.  On her return home late that night after a long calving season day, Ali told her husband, Sean, of the bizarre scene that she had witnessed earlier in the day and he immediately told her to phone the police.   

The following morning, Ali and Sean Morris met with Richard Kilpatrick, the Scottish Natural Heritage National Nature Reserve Manager to inform him of the situation.  After several conversations with the police and keeping an eye on the suspect man, the police decided to come over to have a chat with him.  On arrival at the Rum Ferry Terminal, and asking the man for his details the Wildlife Crimes Officer immediately placed Matthew Gonshaw under arrest.

Matthew Gonshaw has served three previous terms in prison for egg theft and a raid on his house in London, as a direct consequence of his arrest on Rum, revealed almost 700 clutches of eggs, some from highly protected and vulnerable species. This resulted in his fourth jail term of 6 months imposed by Thames Magistrates Court on 13 December 2011.  On 24 February 2012 Gonshaw was issued with an ASBO at Stratford Magistrates Court banning him from visiting Scotland during the bird breeding season for the next 10 years.  He was also banned from visiting any RSPB or Wildlife Trust land for the same time period.

Gonshaw appeared at Inverness Sheriff Court on 11 May 2012 charged with the offences committed on Rum.  The court heard how Gonshaw had gone to the Isle of Rum, a National Nature Reserve in May 2011.  Later police searched him and found 20 eggs and an egg blowing kit in his rucksack.

Gonshaw admitted illegally taking and destroying seven meadow pipit eggs, and five others that could have been reed bunting or blackcap as well as eight Manx shearwater eggs.

Sheriff Margaret Neilson told Gonshaw “You have been unable to provide any explanation for your twisted behaviour and have shown no remorse whatsoever. You may call yourself a wildlife collector. You are in fact a wildlife destroyer.”  Sheriff Neilson jailed Gonshaw for the maximum 6 months allowed by law, his 5th jail term for wildlife crime offences and banned him from visiting Scotland during the bird breeding season for life.

If it had not been for the vigilance of local residents and in particular, the attention to detail from Ali Morris who was only in the location due to her job with the Edinburgh University Red Deer Research Project, Gonshaw would have got away with his mission.  It is a credit to the community of Rum to have caught such a prolific egg thief.


The 'Tattie Housers' have arrived! - May 2012


Rum welcomes our long awaited Tattie Housers - welsh couple Ian and Kate who have moved to Rum to rennovate the 'Tattie House' here in Kinloch Village. They have started a new blog to record their ongoing progress with the rennovation. Read their blog here.

Kilmory Beach Clean - April 2012


The community beach clean at Kilmory went very well on Saturday the 21st of April - check out the ranger blog link here for more about the day.

Nursery Assistant Post at Rum Primary - May 2012


The post of Nursery Assistant at Rum Primary is still vacant.  If you are interested please contact Headmaster Stuart Poole on 01687 462034.

It is an opportunity to become a member of the Rum community and experience island life first hand.

New signs, Waiting Room and Loo - May 2012


Visitors gratefully waiting in the new Pier waiting room (c) Ali MorrisThis month sees the opening of the long awaited waiting room at the Ferry Terminal - no pun intended! The work, carried out by SNH, means that we can say goodbye to cowering behind the rubbish and recycling skips while waiting for the ferry in poor weather.

Also, Isle of Rum Community Trust have been busy at the Ferry Terminal, installing a composting toilet.  This project, funded by IRCT, Vikki showing off the new loo (c) Ali MorrisLEADER and HIE, consigns mad dashes into the bushes to use the 'loo with a view' are now a thing of the past.   This new toilet is to be found on the south (far-away) side of the boat sheds.

Finally,  new signs have been popping up throughout Kinloch Village and the NNR providing useful information for Visitors.  There are also markers for different trails around the Village.


New Signs at Ferry Terminal (c) Ali MorrisTrail markers (c) Ali Morris











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