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Developers hope to turn tiny island into holiday retreat

Proposals would see three individual communities established on Tanera Mor.

Tanera Mor: Plans could create 30 jobs (file pic).
Tanera Mor: Plans could create 30 jobs (file pic). Bob Jones

Developers hope to transform a tiny island off Scotland's north west coast into a "world class" holiday location.

Plans have been put forward to improve and link up tracks on Tanera Mor, the largest of the Summer Isles, as part of wider redevelopment works.

A broader vision for the 310-hectare island would see historic buildings redeveloped, holiday accommodation opened and three individual communities established.

The report, lodged with Highland Council, said: "It is designed to welcome guests to something entirely special, where the attention to detail and delivery of services is outwardly effortless and utterly charming.

"It is not a hotel, but a place of reflection which transcends the traditional hospitality mode.

"We intend to create a clear sense of identity, that truly complements Tanera's unparalleled natural beauty, designed to celebrate and bring to life the island's illustrious past, but firmly looking to its future.

"Tanera can become a beacon for sustainable and sympathetic redevelopment and land management in the community and as such play an important part in the economy of the local area and the Highlands in general."

Ian and Saffron Wace, who bought the beauty spot in May 2017 for around £2m, were drawn to the purchase as they saw an opportunity for redevelopment.

It was once a thriving fishing community until it suffered from the decline in the industry and has seen periods of being uninhabited since 1991, although there are now some residents.

Three communities - at Ardnagoine, Tigh-an-Quay and Garadheancal - are to be created so different groups of guests can occupy Tanera at a time or one large party can take over the entire island.

Buildings will be made from "ruined structures" which are to be redeveloped "in keeping with their historical context and place within the wider landscape".

Cafes, social spaces and a church will also be built alongside an already existing post office.

Staffing would include up to ten full-year residents, with an additional 20 part-time workers.

Developers hope the the island, accessible by a ferry service from near Ullapool, will be a place for people "to escape to" for celebrations or those who enjoy creative pursuits.

However, it has already hit a stumbling block as the Scottish Environment Protection Agency has objected unless modifications are made to the tracks so as not to disturb peat and wetlands.

The island is home to various protected species including the European otter, and it has flora which is unusual for the area as there are no sheep, rabbits or deer to feed on it.

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