Island Farm Stamp Issue launched - and book almost ready...

05 May 2011

Thursday 5th May saw the launch of 2011's stamp issue, a set of reproduced photos recording life on Tanera during Frank Fraser Darling's stay at Tigh-an-Quay in the late 1930's/early 1940's.
 Island Years, Island Farm
The title of the issue is taken from the well-loved and well-kent true story of life on the Summer Isles during the early years of World War II. The author, the distinguised naturalist-philosopher Sir Frank Fraser Darling, set up home at Tigh-an-Quay with his family in 1939 to breathe new life into the derelict surroundings that remained after the failure of the herring industry on Tanera.

Sir Frank believed that a single family unit was too small to exist in isolation, dependent only upon its own resources. He aspired to the view that groups of like minded pioneers could bring prosperity and produce leaders who could inspire and promote Gaelic culture which is the The Quay partly restoredbedrock of crofting communities. Sir Frank left Tanera in 1943 at the behest of the Department of Agriculture to establish demonstration crofts and advise the crofters.

Alasdair Fraser Darling, the son of Sir Frank and Bobbie, remembers happy school holidays on the islands and has very kindly allowed us to use illustrations from the 1943 edition of 'Island Farm'. These were delicately mainpulated by photographic expert Nick Tonkin to create images suitable for high quality stamp production.

Pat Murphy and the trusty tractorThe book 'Island Farm' is currently being re-published by The Dovecote Press, in omnibus format together with one of Sir Frank's other books; 'Island Years', a story of life on various Scottish Islands, including Priest Island, another of the Summer Isles archipeligo. The books will be ready from 18th May, and can be ordered from Dovecote Press; for more information, see:
The author and Trimmie

Tanera Mòr, Summer Isles, Achiltibuie, by Ullapool, Ross-Shire, Scotland IV26 2YN

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