Finlaggan Trust committee members turned out on one of our few dry January days to cut the first sods in preparation for the building of an extension to Finlaggan Cottage. On 5 February Billy Muirâ€™s construction company moved onto the site and the project, which has taken three years of planning and fund raising, was underway. Chairman Gina McAuslan said 'The extension is the major phase of our project to upgrade the facilities at Finlaggan, and the one that has taken the most effort. As Eilean Mor is an Historic Scotland designated site we had to negotiate with that body and Argyll and Bute Council to agree a design that worked for all of us. We also found the form filling required by grant applications to be quite a challenge.'
The first phase, a new access bridge to Eilean MÃ²r, was built by the Royal Engineers in September 2007 using materials funded by the project. Work is underway on the third phase â€“ a new, user friendly website. Gina said, 'Although the funds are in place for the building we will miss out on revenue this year by having to postpone opening till near mid-summer, and need to continue fundraising. We have the Venison Supper on the 23rd and the renowned chef Lady Claire MacDonald is doing a cookery demonstration for us in May. We are grateful for the financial support weâ€™ve had from local people and look forward to good turn outs at both events.' Funding for the project comes from the Community Environmental Renewal Scheme (CERS), Nadair, Argyll and the Islands Enterprise, the Finlaggan Trustâ€™s own funds and donations from Schroder Family Trust and the Ganochy Trust.
This story was published with kind permission of the Ileach local newspaper.