Tolsta District News 1947 as reported in the Stornoway Gazette
OFF THE ROAD
We regret there is now no Tolsta-owned bus on the road. Evander MacIver, the "father" of bus drivers, has given up his licence - with a clean sheet. He is not so young as he was, but he has plenty of patience and though he cannot give you passage home he is still free to transport your goods, with his customary cheerfulness - and "Sure to come by Saturday!"
Scores of acres of valuable moorland winter grazings have been destroyed by a fire which swept between Garry and Muirneag. Several sheep and many wild birds have been found dead in the area. The hard frost has proved disastrous for our feathered friends and birds of every description, including the hardy blackbird, may be seen dead.
On Thursday, February 27, Gormelia, eldest daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Donald MacKay, 16 Shore Street, was united in marriage to Murdo, the only surviving son of Mrs. MacIver and the late Murdo MacIver, 18 Shore Street. Rev. Mr. MacDonald, Uig, officiated. They sail on this voyage with the good wishes of the community.
HEROINE OF THE BLIZZARD
The good folk of 64 New Street, were astonished to hear the chirping of chicks looking for something to eat and discovered a brood of four, hatched under a derelict van. How it was done in such weather is a matter for the Board of Agriculture to investigate, but the hen is a real heroine of the blizzard.
APPOINTED TO HARRIS
Nurse Christina MacKay has been appointed to a district in Harris.
In the Free Church, on 17th April, Etta, daughter of Mrs. Morrison and the late John Morrison, 4 New Tolsta, was married to Malcolm, son of Murdo MacIver, Gress.
NEW BOAT'S DEBUT
Allan Cameron's new motor-boat has made her debut and landed a good catch of haddocks. Working from our exposed landing place we are doubtful as to her usefulness. Great credit is due to the master craftsman at Ness who built her.
Nurse MacRitchie, a native of Back, has been appointed as district nurse in this district, in place of Nurse Stewart. The appointment is temporary. Nurse Stewart is the second nurse to leave the district within a year to get married.
At the Free Church on Thursday, Johanna MacLean, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. D. MacLean, Sighthill, Tolsta, was married to John, second son of the late Mr. and Mrs. T. Campbell, 5 New Tolsta. Rev. M. MacIver, Crossbost, who officiated was assisted by Rev. M. MacLeod, Portmahomack.
In May, 1946, Allan Cameron, set his small lines off Tolsta Head. When he returned for them the buoys had disappeared. A few days ago one of them was found ashore at Bayble. Where the buoy has been travelling these fifteen months, we have to conjecture.
AMONG HER OWN
Nurse Christina MacKay, our newly appointed District Nurse, comes among her own folk and like her predecessors, may expect to be walked off her feet. Before qualifying as a Queen's Nurse, she had ten years professional experience in Peru. We welcome Nurse MacKay among us.
Alexander Graham, radio operator, Royal Tank Corps., 57 New Street, is home from India demobbed.
LOSS OF MOTOR BOAT
The sinking of the motor boat "Comrade", with all the fishing gear is a serious loss for all concerned, but there is much cause for thankfulness that there was no loss of life nor injury to any of the crew.
Donald Murray,37,North Tolsta.Skipper
Angus Macleod(Sen.)and Angus Macleod(Jun.)82,North Tolsta
Murdo Maciver,18,North Tolsta,
Angus Maciver,28,North Tolsta,
Alexander Macleod,Fernlea,North Tolsta,
Roderick Macleod,12,North Tolsta,Engineer.
Angus Campbell,13,North Tolsta,Cook.
Angus Macleod,(Sen)managed to save a case and a pair of shoes,next day Murdo Maciver found a pair of his trousers floating in the bottom of the ship's boat with a wet but very welcome five pound note in the hip pocket.
For Donald Murray this is but one of many narrow escapes at sea. In the 1914-18 War, while attending to business on the top of a boat davit, a knot slipped and he fell overboard. An expert swimmer, Donald soon disengaged himself from the bo'sun "chair" and waited until the armed Liner, going at 17 knots turned and picked him up. On another occasion, the boat he was on capsized and all ten men aboard were trapped underneath. He dived and cleared and was the means of saving two of his mates, before he himself grasped a lifeline for his own safety. He is also a survivor from the "Iolaire".
Quite a number of local men have found regular employment near Stornoway and others are working two or three days each week, as the opportunity arises, thanks to the Employment Exchange. The return fare for six working days, however, is £1 4s and that is a big slice out of a labourer's wage and the men consider they have a grievance that calls for redress.
On Sunday morning, a disastrous fire destroyed the four-roomed homestead of Murdo Morrison, 31 North Tolsta. The family asleep upstairs, were awakened by the smell of burning material and when the bedroom door was opened, they found exit by the stairs barred by flames. Mr. Morrison promptly smashed the window and grasping his 12-month-old baby jumped clear. His wife and daughters followed. Mrs. Morrison was injured.
Neighbours were soon on the scene and passed buckets of water from a nearby burn. The fire however, was out of control when the Stornoway Fire Brigade arrived, but a scullery adjoining the house and a byre were saved. Mrs. MacIver, a blind, aged and bedridden lady, had to be removed from No. 32, as the house was filled with smoke - the house standing right in the path of the flames.
The Morrison family in their night attire found sanctuary with Mrs.Macleod, No.34.Not a single article of clothing or furniture was saved.The origin of the fire is not known.There is much sympathy with the Morrisons in their distress and we know the township will rise to the occasion.
A telephone has been installed in the Schoolhouse and in the Nurse's Bungalow. This will ease the work in the Post Office here.
After serving inthe Royal Navy for 12 years, John MacLeod, No. 3, is home demobbed.
On 13th November, in the Free Church, Catherine, the eldest daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Duncan MacLean, was united in marriage to John, the eldest son of Mrs. Campbell, 5 New Tolsta. Rev. W. Campbell, Knock, officiated.
On Thursday, December 4th, Agnes, youngest daughter of the late Mr. and Mrs. Angus MacIver, 64 New Street, was united in marriage with John, the only son of Mrs. Campbell and the late Donald Campbell, Mooredge Cottage. Rev. Malcolm MacIver, Crossbost, officiated.