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Source: Gordon Hatton

Copyright: Creative Commons 2.0

Baleshare lies to the south-west of North Uist. Its economics and community were boosted by the building of a causeway in 1962. The 350 m causeway was built by William Tawse Ltd. The island is extremely flat by Hebridean standards, rising to only 12 metres above sea level and known for its long sandy beach. It has a population of 49 living in two settlements: Samhla and Teananachar.

The name means 'east farm' or 'east town'. The 'west town' may have been on land that was said to exist to the west of Baleshare, washed away in the sixteenth century, over which it was possible to walk to the Monach Islands at low tide. The Monachs are some 15 kilometres to the west. Another story suggests there was once a land bridge to Kirkibost, 100 metres to the north. The basis for this seems to be a reference in the Exchequer Rolls for 1542 that the valued rental had been decreased due to encroachment by the sea at some unspecified date.


Copyright: Creative Commons 3.0

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