Stornoway Harbour, Isle of Lewis, Scotland

This evening, I am focusing on the town of Stornoway on the Isle of Lewis in the Outer Hebrides. The latter comprise a chain of islands which lie well out into the Atlantic off the N.W. coast of Scotland.

Stornoway has evolved from an original Viking era, Norse settlement and, with a population of about 9000, ranks as one of the most populous communities in the Highlands and Islands of Scotland. The town and 70,000 acres of land is owned by the Stornoway Trust which is administered by ten elected trustees. Other facts and information concerning Stornoway:

  • Historically, the two most powerful clans on the island have been the Nicolsons ( MacNicol) and the Mackenzies. Clan Morrison had a power base in the N.E.of Lewis.
  • Before ownership was passed to the Stornoway Trust, Stornoway/Isle of Lewis was owned by two industrialists, Sir James Matheson and then Lord Leverhulme.
  • Industries today include fishing, seaweed processing and wind turbine manufacture.
  • Stornoway can be accessed from the mainland by ferry and airplane.
  • The Gaelic language is widely spoken.
  • The Free Church of Scotland (Presbyterian) is the dominant religion. There is little commercial activity on a Sunday.
  • A traditional product is the Stornoway Black Pudding which has been granted Protected Geographical Indication by the European Commission. This  means the product  can only be described as Stornoway Black Pudding if it is produced in the town or parish of Stornoway on Lewis.
  • Near to the town centre is Lews Castle which dates from the 1850s. The building is not open to the public but the extensive grounds are.

Stornoway Harbour, Isle of Lewis, Scotland

Stornoway Harbour, Isle of Lewis, Scotland

Town Centre, Stornoway, Lewis, Scotland

Stornoway is an intriguing place, very traditional and not dominated by tourism. A good base to tour the island with its treasure trove of historical riches which include the famous Callanish Stones and Carloway Broch.

Be Sociable, Share!