always something new to discover.
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Teashop opening Wednesday April 4th - April 2012


Excitement is building as Claire has announced her opening day for her teashop in the newly redecorated Village Hall as Wednesday April 4th 2012.

We can't wait to sample her selection of soup, sarnies, toasties, tray bakes and other home baking.  Summer is truely here!

For more information have a look at her section of the website here


Rare Bittern on Rum - March 2012


Well done Norman for spotting a Bittern in the nearly completed wildlife garden next to the Village Hall on Sunday 18th.  Apparently the bird spent some time guddling happily in the garden.  

For more on this story and some superb photos have a look at Mike the Ranger's blog here.

Rum Shop renovations complete - March 2012


Rum Shop interior (c) Ali Morris

Jinty has been working hard this winter, renovating and improving Rum Post Office and Shop thanks to a Post Office Chip and PIN logoDiversification Fund grant.  

Outside, the front of the shop now has a covered over area and an all access ramp.  Jinty plans to set up some secure cabinets in this area to increase her stock area.  The ramp is great for access and for deliveries and the local children love running and cycling up and down it. Inside, changes have also taken place; there are two new glass fronted fridges and one Rum Shop Exterior (c) Ali Morris freezer so you can see what goodies there are before taking them out, the floor has been re-tiled and the interior has had a lick of paint.  Most recently, a chip and PIN payment system has been installed so it is now possible to pay by card and get cash back at Rum Shop.



Whatever happened to the 'Rhouma'? - March 2012


The 'Rhouma' - former Rum flit boat (c) Douglas King

Thank you to Douglas King who has sent us a photo of the former Rum flit boat the  'Rhouma'. He took this photo (right) in Oban in June last year and she had 'Rhouma Oban' painted on her stern. This flit boat was no longer needed on Rum with the advent of the new pier and roll-on roll-off vessel, the MV Loch Nevis. Visitors to Rum prior to the new pier being completed will remember the climbing aboard the 'Rhouma' before landing at the Old Pier. We are pleased to see her looking so good.

M/Y Madiz in 2007, from Wikipedia




And here is the original 'Rhouma 2' (left) as owned by Sir George Bullough of Kinloch Castle. She is now called the M/Y 'Madiz' and is still going strong at over one hundred years of age.  For more information on her illustrious career click here.


Second Croft Allocated - February 2012


Interviews were held on the 16th of February for the allocation of the second croft by the Isle of Rum Community Trust.  The Goddard family, from Sussex, have been the successful applicants and are looking forward to the challenges ahead of them.  The croft, which is little more than rough pasture at the moment, is situated to the west of Kinloch Village, and has great views out onto the National Nature Reserve.

Sean Morris, one of IRCT’s Directors involved in interviewing the crofters, is pleased that the island’s population will receive a welcome boost: “Nic and Ady are incredibly enthusiastic about moving to Rum, and have not been put off by the logistical challenges posed by life on a remote island, or by the hard work that will be involved in making the croft work. They convinced us that they have some really good, innovative ideas, but that their feet are firmly on the ground and they are aware of the tough realities of island life. They seem to have a good network of contacts, and hopefully this will be beneficial to the whole community.” The Goddards have been writing a blog about their recent year-long search for a different way of living, which culminated in a visit to Rum and the start of a whole new adventure.

To follow their blog click here

The Rum community look forward to welcoming them to the Island and wish them every success with their new adventure.

Rum Shop ready for Orders - February 2012


With the new tourist season approaching, Jinty has put together an Order Form to give everyone an idea of the kinds of things she has in stock, from bread and milk to organic burger and sausage mixes. The Order Form is directed more towards larger visiting groups, but if you would like to avoid any disappointment and ensure the shop has enough cereal and tea bags in for you and your family, please get in touch.

Because Jinty has limited space - as you’ll see when you visit the shop - this order form doesn’t cover all the items that she has for sale and is subject to change.  If you would like anything in particular, would like to place a bulk order, or are just plain curious, contact Jinty on 01687 460 328 or e-mail

New Ranger Blog - January 2012


The Isle of Rum Community Trust ranger has started a new blog - which will contain news, wildlife sitings and more....
Check it out here. For information about ranger tours, walks and other events, please see the ranger page here.

Sean's fund-raising total - January 2012


Sean Morris on top of Trollaval (c) Sean MorrisOn 31st August 2011, Sean Morris took on the Rum Cuillin Ridge walk with Neil Boyd, in aid of the British Heart Foundation (BHF).The walk was a great success and the pair crossed the finishing line outside the Castle where a small group of well-wishers had gathered to congratulate them, in 8.5 hours.  Not bad going boys! 

In April 2010, Sean was diagnosed with coronary heart disease and underwent a double-heart bypass operation.  He was 42.  Since then, Sean has remained utterly focussed and has become fitter than ever, which makes it even harder for those of us who go out on the hill with him!

Sean and Neil reaching the finish line (c) Ali MorrisSean had donation tins in the Castle, Village Hall and Shop in a bid to maximise his collection, but most money was raised by friends and family donating through his virgin money giving web page.  This page eventually closed in November and the grand total was declared.  Sean initially hoped to raise £2,000, but ended up raising a staggering £3,337.90 after gift aid was added to the online donations.  This money will be used by the BHF to continue funding research into coronary heart disease and helping patients and families of those affected by this silent killer.

Sean would like to thank everyone who sponsored him for their generosity and support in completing this challenge.  Together we can beat heart disease.


"Rum may get temporary visitor accommodation" - December 2011


SNH Press Release 23/12/2011

Temporary visitor accommodation may be installed on the Isle of Rum following concerns about the hostel in the island's Kinloch Castle.

Most of Rum is owned by Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH) and managed as a national nature reserve.

Kinloch Castle, also owned by SNH, is a major visitor attraction and the main provider of visitor accommodation. However the building requires major investment, well beyond the reaches of SNH's budget. SNH has spent over £1 million on the castle in the past few years. But despite this and major efforts by staff the hostel is unable to offer accommodation to the standard visitors expect of a modern hostel.

Last year SNH announced it may have to close the hostel part of the castle within two or three years due to increasing repair and maintenance costs, and began talks with the local community about business opportunities in visitor facilities.

SNH is now looking into the possibility of installing high quality temporary visitor accommodation in case the hostel has to close before the community is ready to take advantage of the business opportunity.

Sarah Bentley, SNH operations manager, explained: "We have had numerous problems with the hostel, including the discovery of dry rot in part of the building, falls and weakness in some of the plaster ceilings and difficulties with the boiler. The facilities require significant investment to bring them up to a reasonable standard. We are therefore exploring the best option to ensure we can continue to provide facilities for people to visit the island and enjoy the spectacular beauty of the national nature reserve and the principal wings of the castle.

"We have been working closely with the Isle of Rum Community Trust to develop plans for longer term accommodation and facilities on the island. This is progressing well, with a feasibility study due to start in January. However, given time scales for funding, planning, construction etc, it is unlikely that any new facility would be ready for two or three years.

"Accommodation for visitors next season will either be in the castle hostel as normal or in temporary visitor accommodation of an even higher standard. The temporary accommodation will reduce the risk of an emergency closure leaving Rum with no visitor accommodation. As new accommodation develops it will allow us to focus our resources on conserving the castle itself."

Vikki Trelfer, the Isle of Rum Community Trust's development officer, said: "Kinloch Castle and its hostel is a real draw for visitors to the island, but the community has been aware for some time that there is uncertainty over its future. Closure of the hostel will create space for much-needed business opportunities both for private individuals and for the Community Trust to generate an income by providing accommodation and services for visitors."

Ewan Macdonald, Chair of Kinloch Castle Friends Association, said: "It is important that visitor access to the Castle and reserve is maintained and we welcome the plan to provide alternative temporary accommodation. We are committed to to the conservation of the Castle and its contents and would prefer that its state was such that visitors could continue to use the hostel. We appreciate that SNH has allocated considerable funds to essential maintenance in the past few years , but that has not been enough to prevent deterioration. It is therefore important that this new unplanned expenditure will not divert funds from the necessary work in the Castle."

Even if the hostel closes, SNH will continue to run tours of the main wings of Kinloch Castle, showcasing the Edwardian interior. The organisation is also developing a conservation plan for the castle to conserve the fabric of the building. Works are currently being carried out on the castle roof as part of this plan.


Rare mussels found near Rum / MPA for the Sound of Canna? - December 2011


"Rare mussels found during marine surveys" by Lewis Smith - - 30/12/2011Fan Mussel (c)

The largest living collection of rare fan mussels in British waters has been discovered around Scotland’s Small Isles. More than 100 of the mussels, a species that fishermen used to believe fed on the bodies of drowned sailors, were located during a series of surveys of Scottish waters over the last year. Mussel fans were one of several rare species to be uncovered in waters where they were either unknown or hardly ever seen. They are the largest shellfish in British waters – growing up to 48cm long – and are among the rarest and most threatened.

Sailors once believed them to eat the bodies of the drowned because they have thin, silk-like threads that look like golden human hairs. The threads allow the mussels to hold on to the sea bed by clinging on to objects as small as a grain of sand. In previous centuries the threads were prized for use in gloves – Henry VIII was reputed to have worn a pair. The mussels, which get their name from being fan-shaped, protrude from the surface of the sea bed and they are especially vulnerable to destruction from scallop dredging. Numbers have also fallen because in previous years they were a popular souvenir among divers. Scotland’s largest horse mussel bed was pinpointed near Noss Head, Caithness, during the 15 surveys this year that covered 2,000 square kilometres of the sea.

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