Associated People: Barr, Mr Thomas, Balephetrish (1844 - 1918)


Audio cassette recording of Hector MacPhail talking at Vaul Golf Club on 31/1/1997

Hector MacPhail talking at Vaul Golf Club on 31st January 1997 about Clydesdale horses on Tiree, Tom Barr, the Scottish Horse Regiment, his great-uncle Archie MacDougall, Tiree blacksmiths, shoes and clothes made on Tiree, weaving and carpentry, graveyards and tacksmen, Sir Donald MacLean, Tiree place-names, UK boxing championship Donald Lamont, shebeens and whisky distilling, peat and seaweed, emigration, fishing and Hynish pier, local boat-building.


Photocopied leaflet `Tiree Food Producers Sent To Prison`.

Leaflet produced by the Highland Land League about eight Tiree men who were sent to prison in 1918 for occupying land in Balephetrish leased by Thomas Barr.

prisoners.jpgTiree in 100 Objects – 24 – 2nd Land Raid

The History of Tiree in 100 Objects


Tiree Food Producers Sent To Prison

Transcription of a Highland Land League publication of 1918 titled ‘Tiree Food Producers Sent To Prison’.

Courtesy of Mr Hugh MacLeod

During World War I, the Government encouraged people to cultivate unused land. It also instructed the Board of Agriculture for Scotland in 1914 to break up large farms for returning servicemen. The Board decided to take over the lease of 137 acres of Balephetrish farm for small holdings.

However, Thomas Barr, the tenant of Balephetrish farm, claimed £1,243 in compensation which the Board refused to pay although it allocated the land to a number of applicants. By 1918, eight Tiree cottars could wait no longer and ploughed 30 acres of Balephetrish farm and planted potatoes and other crops.

They were arrested and taken to Oban where they were welcomed like heroes by the local branch of the Highland Land League. At the subsequent court hearing they were found guilty and sentenced to ten days in prison with the recommendation that ‘they be treated to the privileges of political prisoners’.


Photocopied journal of Lord Lorne dated 23-28/4/1884.

The journal of Lord Lorne written during a visit to Tiree 23-28/4/1884 and in the form of a letter to the 8th Duke of Argyll.

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