My first trip out to St Kilda this year was a short three hour round trip by chopper in March to assess how the island had fared after a particularly hard Hebridean winter.
Luckily, the islands historic buildings fared well, although the slate roofs of the Church, Manse and Feather store were, as you can see below, worse for wear.
Heading out last week to start my season proper on the islands I was pleased to see that David and Michael, slaters from Speyside Plumbing, were also waiting at the helipad in Kyle of Lochalsh. They arrived a week ago today and got straight to work, enjoying some beautiful sunshine and the peace and quiet of the very start of the season, before visitor numbers start to ramp up.
They very quickly had the roofs looking good as new – the beautiful century-old second-hand slate they sourced from Aberlour doing the job nicely.
It’s been really nice to start the season with these very satisfying repairs. Any visitor arriving this season will have no idea that the island’s buildings had been battered and left battle-scarred by the winter – just the way we like it!
Àrsair Hiort/ St Kilda Archaeologist