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Update on Storm Damage

I am very pleased to report that the Storm Damage Project is ready to start in the near future.

You will remember that the severe storms in January caused extensive damage to the sea wall adjacent to Eaglais na h-Aoidhe. Since then Urras Eaglais na h-Aoidhe has been working hard to agree the plans and secure the funding to protect the church. Historic Scotland has agreed to provide funding for sheet piling to protect the area from further erosion and to fill in two large voids which the sea has made. The additional funding needed to complete this phase of the project has come from ENTRUST who administer the Comhairle's Landfill Tax and some of our own funds. Additional funding requests are in place to complete the long term aims of the Trust. Breedon Hebrides will be the lead contractor in the project working jointly with a specialist mainland contractor. Work is scheduled to begin on the 23rd of March and should last for around a week. The coastal path alongside the church will be closed for the duration of this work.

In any project the Urras is expected to provide some match funding and it is to the credit of the Friends of Ui Church and other supporters that the Trust is able to do this. Your membership fees, the sale of books and other merchandise and donations have all contributed towards the funding of this project.

Chairman of Urras Eaglais Na H- Aoidhe, Colin Scott Mackenzie said, "The Trust is delighted that Historic Scotland have agreed to provide funding to help with the storm damage project to protect the area from further erosion and protect the church in the long term. The Trust is also appreciative of the support received from Comhairle nan Eilean Siar, Stornoway Trust and Aignish Grazings Committee."

Krystyna Pytasz, Project Manager, Addison Conservation and Design added, "By the end of March, sheet piling will be in place to further protect the church from further storm damage. This has been a very difficult project because of the very short timescales - the funding from Historic Scotland has to be spent by the end of March - and the continuing very bad weather is causing further erosion of the coastline. It has been a race against accountants and tides. The project is being monitored by AOC Archaeology who have already made some interesting archaeological discoveries. A full report will be written. The work will be managed by Addison Conservation and Design and we will be on site when the work is being done.”

I will let you know when the work is done – let’s just hope the weather in the last week of March is kind to us!

Elizabeth Chaplin
Secretary
Urras Eaglais na h-Aoidhe.

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