The skyline is changing in South Uist as the structure for the long-awaited new Gaelic cultural centre, Cnoc Soilleir finally starts to go up.

Contractors from Benbecula firm Macinnes Brothers Ltd and Johnson Rigging of Fife have been working through weather windows over the past two weeks on the steel framework.

By yesterday (Wednesday 14 October) they were able to showcase images of the new structure against a breathtaking blue sky.

Like all building projects, the construction was halted for the Covid-19 shutdown, but in July foundations were laid and last Tuesday (6 October) the crane arrived to start lifting the steel framework into place.

Cnoc Soilleir is being built on the Passivhaus system, thanks to a design by Edinburgh-based John Renshaw Architects. Passivhaus building is a design standard that aims to provide comfort and health for occupants as well as reducing energy and carbon emissions from the building.

Cnoc Soilleir is a joint venture between Ceòlas Uibhist and Lews Castle College UHI (LCC/UHI). The new focal building at Cnoc Soilleir (the bright hill) in Dalabrog, will have facilities for both LCC/UHI’s educational programmes, and Ceòlas’ community-led activities around Gàidhlig language learning, heritage, culture, music and dance.

Pictures show the design for the school (John Renshaw Architects), work starting on lifting the steel framework and pictures from yesterday of the building’s skeleton in place (Macinnes Brothers).