North Uist - East side
The islands of the Outer Hebrides are known for their inspirational qualities, while everyone who lives or visits here comes to understand that significance of community in a location where life is a constant dance with the environment and elements – which is why on the east side of North Uist you will find an inspired local community, with a rich artistic culture and keen sense of cooperation, which has been carried down the generations.
Living amongst the many lochs and lochans that litter east coast of the Isle of North Uist, locals have created a range of resources open to residents and visitors alike.
In Lochmaddy, the island’s ferry terminus and principle village, the award-winning Taigh Chearsabhagh arts centre offers a selection of exhibitions ranging from the artistic to the archaeological, as well as an enticing programme of events from poetry and music evenings to art workshops or exclusive openings.
The centre houses a museum, cafe, shop and post office as well as providing creative space for community and educational initiatives.
If the arts centre fires your imagination, you might want to head out and explore some of the surrounding island inspiration – from the Neolithic chambered burial cairn Barpa Langass to the Pobhull Finn stone circle – accessible from Langass lodge.
Want to experience living art amidst the eastern North Uist landscapes? Then pay a visit to Chris Drury’s exciting Hut of Shadows installation at Lochmaddy - part of the Road Ends Project and Uist Sculpture Trail.
Set into the island’s traditional crofting land, this stone built hut is part hidden under its natural turf roof. The building houses a camera obscura, whose lens and mirror formation bring the outside in by projecting the nearby seascape onto interior stone walls and blending the lines between element driven environment and man’s island endeavours.
Some of those local island effors against the onslaught of the elements and isolation of the environment here on the East Side of the island include the Committee Road from Bayhead to Sollas, the legacy of a team charged with famine relief in the area in the 1840s, and the scars of peat cutting along the road from Lochmaddy to Clachan a crofting tradition that has been carried down through the centuries as a way of heating Hebridean houses.
If, however, you prefer to discover the wilds than see where man has left his mark, there are great walking trails available taking in everything from the peak of Beinn Lee above Lochmaddy to the Langass woodland – an unusual environment on these mostly bare Atlantic islands.
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