Discovering and sharing the history of Scotland’s island communities

MV Isle of Lewis

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Keypoints: The Isle of Lewis was constructed by Ferguson Shipbuilders of Port Glasgow on the Clyde, launched by royalty and assumed the Ullapool to Stornoway service at the end of July 1995. She was the first truly ‘route-specific’ vessel, planned in high detail for a route from which she never wavered. This book tells the story of a vessel which has risen above all odds.
Contents: For nearly twenty years, the route from the West Highlands of Scotland to the island of Lewis in the Outer Hebrides was served by the Isle of Lewis – at the time the largest and fastest motor vessel ever built for Caledonian MacBrayne. Introduced in 1995, she would be the only CalMac ship ever to exceed a hundred metres in length, until the commissioning of her successor nineteen years later.
The handsome ship was embraced from the start by the Lewis public, not least for her spacious and well-planned internal passenger accommodation. In time she was able to eliminate competition on the Minch and reduced the passage time of her predecessor by almost an hour. Unusually full of character, she became a favourite with visitors and shipping enthusiasts alike, in contrast to some of her later Hebridean sisters.
The vast behemoth Loch Seaforth is now the new servant for Stornoway, but it remains to be seen if she can prove as fast, reliable, and beloved as the Clyde-built queen. This book, backed up with lavish illustrations and extensive background information, tells the story of a vessel which has risen above all odds. Through two decades, no other vessel in the fleet could ever quite surpass the mighty Isle of Lewis.
About the author: Mark Nicolson studied at Sgoil a’ Bhac and the Nicolson Institute, before gaining a degree from the University of the Highlands and Islands. He lives in Lewis.
Categories: Maritime, Engineering, History, Geography

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