There is a saying, ‘Out with the old and in with the new’ and that’s how it was yesterday on Tiree. Although we would have appreciated witnessing the afternoon and evening’s action firsthand, we had to look on from afar. Photographs were posted on social media, but what we valued most was the kindness and thoughtfulness of those who forwarded photographs.
Following yesterday’s post, It’s all go!, Juliet Conway made an interesting comment, ‘From Coll this pm, I could see the top of the crane barge.’ However, it’s not just the height of the crane that is so impressive , it’s the weight that both the barge and the crane can support.
The old linkspan was lifted on Tuesday afternoon after both the MV Clansman and Carly had departed the pier, the latter around 2:50pm
In the evening, around 7:45pm, the work of lowering the new linkspan into place began. At this time of the year this was during the hours of darkness. From the high quality photographs, especially considering the level of light available, it appeared to be a demanding operation.
The linkspan had to be lowered between the supporting dolphins and placed onto the shoreside pivot that enables the linkspan to be raised and lowered.
While the replacement linkspan is now in place, it will be a week or so yet before it can be brought into use. It is just the end of the first phase of the work. It was perhaps the most weather dependent but there is a lot of ancillary work to be completed.
Almost unbelievably there was suitable weather when it was needed. This is remarkable when you consider the stormy weather that has battered the West Coast of Scotland including Tiree since the beginning of January. The island has had no newspapers for at least four Saturdays in a row. Two days before the lift took place the ferry was cancelled.
Before our seven year old grandson went to school, or even nursery, he would stop in the street fascinated by builders with their diggers and cranes. On one occasion a site foreman came out and handed him a child’s high visibility jacket. Either he has inherited an interesting gene from his grandparents or we are enjoying a second childhood.
The night scenes are all courtesy of Tiree’s Pier Master Steve Nagy. Many thanks indeed.
This Life on Tiree reporting from afar. God willing we will be returning on board the MV Clansman tomorrow morning. An early rise to catch the 7:15 departure.