Fàilte! (Welcome!)

Fàilte! (Welcome!)
This blog is the result of my ongoing research into the people, places and events that have shaped the Western Isles of Scotland and, in particular, the 'Siamese-twins' of Harris and Lewis.
My interest stems from the fact that my Grandfather was a Stornowegian and, until about four years ago, that was the sum total of my knowledge, both of him and of the land of his birth.
I cannot guarantee the accuracy of everything that I have written (not least because parts are, perhaps, pioneering) but I have done my best to check for any errors.
My family mainly lived along the shore of the Sound of Harris, from An-t-Ob and Srannda to Roghadal, but one family 'moved' to Direcleit in the Baighs...

©Copyright 2011 Peter Kerr All rights reserved

Tuesday, 15 February 2011

Lingearabhagh (Lingerbay) "Heather bay" or "heather beach bay", from Norse

A contact kindly asked her grandfather if he would look at my piece on 1 Fleoideabhagh (Flodabay) and clear-up the confusions I had mentioned in that piece. In addition to clarifying the history of the house and then explaining that I still have close relatives living in Strond & Ceann Debig (this being previously unknown to any of my family!) , he ended with this:

"I also remember an event in January, 1944 when one of your relatives (Iain or John) took to a cave in Lingerbay and (at least) was affected by frostbite.
I can't remember whether he survived the episode."

This is, I am sure you will agree, an intriguing tale to be told! Which Iain/John Kerr was this and what drove him to take to a cave in the Winter of '44? I don't think he perished there for, if so, it is not recorded in the Register but I shall have to wait a while before I can contact my source to seek further details.

Meanwhile, we shall have to leave the mysterious John Kerr shivering in his cave somewhere near Lingerbay...

(Many thanks to HT for the info & CM for her help!)


  1. On the subject of "Heather bay" [Lingerbay], there is another name like that in Harris.

    Molinginish, on Loch Seaforth near Reinigeadal, means "shingley beach by the heathery knoll". It has been deserted for nearly 50 years.

  2. Thank you for that - The common element in the two names, 'ling', is another word for 'Heather' and, apparently, originates from the Old Norse 'lyng' meaning light in weight as explained here: