Westray Development TrustNews

August Newsletter

Bayview – Housing Project 

We’re still waiting for a few Bargain Box donations for old material folk have made use of from the Bayview renovations. Please don’t forget to make the donation to the WDT Office and support Westray’s community groups.

We have enjoyed seeing the photos that community members have taken of the renovation works at Bayview, especially of the new roof installation! If you would like to share your photos with us, whether they be of the current renovations or old photos of Bayview in its previous incarnations please email them to isobel@westraydevelopmenttrust.co.uk, we’d love to see them. If you would like to post photos to us please include your return address so we can scan these and post them back to you.

Bayview Flat 4

Bargain Box

Unfortunately the Bargain Box has suffered some issues with the roof of the shipping containers leaking water in August. An initial attempt to patch the roof didn’t hold water! As of writing this article, the Bargain Box is closed until the roof can be assessed and a decision made on the best course of action. We will keep our social media updated with the latest news on how the repair work is going and hopefully, the Bargain Box will be open again soon.

Again, at the time of writing the rules for use of the Bargain Box (once it reopens) remain as follows:

The following safety rules of only one household at a time, face coverings, 2-metre social distancing and hand sanitising before and after entry are still in force. Appointments are available throughout the week, not just the usual Wednesdays and Saturdays if there is a volunteer available to staff the shop.

This may change once further risk assessments have been done in line with the latest government legislation. To book an appointment please contact Trustee Anne Burgher on 01857677344.

Bargain Box leak

Extra Mobile Library Visit 

We funded an extra visit from the Orkney Mobile Library 11th August 2021.

The next Mobile Library visit is Wednesday 15th September 2021. This is part of the normal timetable. The next extra visit funded by WDT will be Wednesday 13th October 2021.

Here is the schedule:

Westray Junior High School – 9am-12pm

Kalisgarth – 12.05 – 12.45pm

Old Kirk – 1.30 – 3.30pm

Beachgrove – 3.45 – 5.15pm

We’ve had some lovely feedback from community members who have enjoyed these extra visits. Please let us know if you’ve enjoyed them too.

Orkney library at the Old Kirk, Westray

Community Garden

There is still plenty to come out of the community garden with tomatoes, cabbages, broad beans, courgettes, cucumbers, chilis, onion, and if anyone fancies a marrow, put a request into your local shop and I’m sure we can accommodate you!

Despite the abundance of produce still available, the season is drawing to a close and we will start looking back on the lessons learnt this year. We have had issues with ventilation in the tunnels during that extended period of cloud and fog which badly effected the tomatoes and cucumbers. But we have had great success trialling a new way of growing in the tunnels using nutrient fed gravel rather than soil which may be extended next year. The Shetland Black new potatoes were disappointing, they didn’t perform particularly well in the sandy soil at the village site and were prone to scab. They still tasted good but didn’t look the best! We had more success in previous years with a commercial variety of earlies under netting and this may be the way to go next year.

The tomato variety grown this year also doesn’t seem to have been as popular, it was more acidic and we think our customers prefer the super sweet cherry F1 variety we grew last year. The pointed cabbages we have grown this year have proved much more popular than the round or savoy type so this may inform planting this year.

We aim to meet the preferences of the community as much as possible but we can only do this with valuable feedback from our customers so if you would like to tell us what you think, positive or negative, we would love to hear from you. As the resounding success of the strawberries has demonstrated, getting the right produce and the right varieties is key to satisfying the islands need for fresh and nutritious fruit and vegetables with almost zero food miles.

‘Basket of fire’ chillies


We continue to meet with various groups and networks to advocate on behalf of our Community the need for improved broadband and mobile infrastructure in Westray. This has included groups such as the Shared Rural Network, as well as a research group investigating opportunities for 5G in Orkney.

Grants Awarded

Education and Training Grants

As more activities and courses are able to go ahead we are getting a good amount of Education and Training grants into the office. This past month we have helped folk take part in the recent courses ‘Weaving Westray Archaeology’ and ‘Stone Westray’ as well as some more piano lessons coming to £747 altogether!

Entertainment Grants

The recent changes in covid-19 rules also meant that the Westray Regatta was able to take place in in some form this year and we were delighted to award Westray Sailing Club an Entertainment grant of £240 to helps towards the costs of refreshments for the sailors taking part.

Community Grants

You may have seen some of the pupils at Westray Junior High School sporting their new green school hoodies. Funding awarded to the Westray Parent Council through our Community Grant scheme made it possible for parents to purchase hoodies and tops at a 25% discount. The pupils themselves chose the new logo through a vote on of several designs.

Contact Us

Our office continues to be restricted by COVID-19 regulations and so we remain closed to the public for the time being. The staff team are implementing a phased return to work which will enable the office to be manned by at least one, but no more than two, members of staff during the Trust’s core opening hours of 9am – 4pm Monday to Friday.

Email: admin@westraydevelopmenttrust.co.uk

Phone: 01857677858

To keep up to date with the latest community development news between Auk Talks visit us;

On our website – www.westraydevelopmenttrust.co.uk

On Facebook – Westray Development Trust

           – Westray Community Garden Project

On Instagram – @westraydevelopmenttrust