The short service which was scheduled to take place at the Iolaire Memorial at 2.00pm today (Wednesday January 1st 2020) has been cancelled due to the weather conditions, Comhairle nan Eilean Siar announced this morning.

Those who had intended to lay wreaths may do so at a time of their own choosing when weather permits, a CnES spokesman said on Twitter.

The memorial service had been planned by CnES as a continuation of memorial events surrounding the centenary of the Iolaire disaster, which took place in the early hours of January 1st 1919.

Rev James Maciver of Stornoway Free Church was to conduct the memorial service, predominantly in English, with one Gaelic psalm to be sung.

Rev Maciver earlier told “We would be very happy if this could become an annual commemoration, especially because of the benefits to the community which we saw arising from the events last year.

“A lot of younger people came to understand and appreciate the importance of the anniversary and the meaning of the tragedy to our community. There were also people who discovered that they had relatives who were involved in the disaster, and there are still some older people left in the villages who had direct contact with families affected a century ago.

“Those people found the commemorations very helpful. It helped them to come to terms with what happened and involvement with the events offered a way to express their sense of loss.”