Past & Present
Quidinish and Aird Mhìghe
Seals by Aird Mhìghe (Photo: Iain Forrest)
Just beyond the new holiday development in Quidnish, was the site of the former Finsbay Lodge. This was a venture by some Glasgow businessmen to develop a sport fishing centre which unfortunately failed, and the lodge, which would have looked more at home in Switzerland, was dismantled and the materials were sold locally.
Angus MacAskill, the ‘Giant MacAskill’, spent the first few years of his life in Quidnish before the family emigrated to Englishtown, Cape Breton in the late 1820’s. At a height of seven feet and nine inches he was the largest most perfectly proportioned man on earth.
At the lower end of Quidinish is a tidal lagoon surrounded by crofts, with more fine examples of lazybed cultivation. Having left Quidinish you come to Sruthmor where the sea flows through a series of culverts into the tidal basin, this is another place to keep a lookout for otters. There is a well-established colony of common seals on the rocks to seaward. This is where the steamer from Glasgow, the SS Dunara Castle, used to come into the bay and several small boats would go alongside to collect goods and any passengers. The service operated by MacCallum Orme & Co. ceased in 1947, but for many years afterwards a small wooden shed was maintained at the Sruthmor bridge for storing goods that were dropped off by lorry from Tarbert. Immediately across the bridge there was a small shop owned by John Norman Morrison from Bayhead. Farther out on the Aird Mhighe headland there was a fishing station set up around 1720 for processing herring. The remains of a stone pier are all that remains, though the place is still locally known as ‘The Station’.
Image Courtesy of Hamish Taylor
By John MacAulay