Photo © Alan R Hall. Please do not re-post without permission.
Highland Omnibuses BA29, EWS118D, an AEC Reliance 2U3RA with Alexander C49F bodywork which was new to SOL (Eastern Scottish) in May 1966 as their ZB118; it was one of six acquired by Highland in 1973. It is seen at Kyleakin on the Isle of Skye.
The area in which the bus is pictured has changed in the intervening years and the view in the background is now dominated by the Skye Bridge, opened in 1995, which dwarfs the lighthouse on Eilean Ban. At 70 feet in height it was built in 1857 to a design by David and Thomas Stevenson. Thomas was the father of the author Robert Louis Stevenson. The lighthouse was decommissioned in 1993 but since then has been denoted as a 'day mark' meaning that it has to be kept in good condition as it is used during the day for navigation by shipping in Loch Alsh.
The island of Eilean Ban has another literary link as the writer and naturalist Gavin Maxwell (author of Ring of Bright Water) bought the cottages in 1963 when they were put up for sale by the Northern Lighthouse Board following the automation of the lighthouse. He moved there full-time in January 1968 after fire destroyed his previous cottage at Sandaig and he stayed there until his death from cancer in September 1969; his beloved otter Teko died of a heart attack two weeks later to the day and is buried on the island. The island is currently administered by a trust but their lease runs out in 2015 and the Scottish Government is seeking to dispose of the island which, if successful, would mean that locals and visitors would lose access to the island.
Photo taken by Alan Hall, c. 1973, Kyleakin, Isle of Skye
©1973-2017 Alan R Hall All Rights Reserved.
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