Author Peter May has put his money where his heart is, donating six iPads to NHS Western Isles to facilitate its new Virtual Visiting service.

Peter, who is the author of the best-selling Lewis Trilogy of crime novels, set in and around the Isle of Lewis, also recently released the novel Lockdown, penned in 2005 but eerily predicting the lockdown that would result from a global pandemic. 

Mr May had spent time as a patient in Western Isles Hospital in the 1990s, when he was staying in Lewis during filming of the popular series Machair.

He said: “Having pledged the entire amount of the advance on my novel to the frontline of the fight against Coronavirus, I have tried wherever possible to see that a good proportion of that money goes back to the people of the Western Isles, to whom I owe so much of my success. 

“I think the Virtual Visiting scheme at the NHS hospital in Stornoway is a brilliant idea and hope that my small contribution will help keep patients and loved ones in touch. It is particularly satisfying to be able to give back to this particular hospital where I received such wonderful care during a week spent as a patient.”

NHS Western Isles chief executive Gordon Jamieson said: “We would like to sincerely thank Mr May for this very generous and thoughtful donation.

“Our Virtual Visiting services brings patients and their families together at a time when we have unfortunately had to introduce restrictions on visiting. The feedback on the new service from patients and their families has been very positive.

“Mr May’s contribution is a very welcome addition to the service and will be of great benefit to those being cared for in hospital, particularly in helping to maintain their mental health and wellbeing.”