Associated People: MacKinnon, Mr Iain, Kilmoluaig (1918 - 2002)


DVD compilation of sections of old films about Tiree, made in 2016 from videos held in An Iodhlann amongst others. Includes footage of: ferries, the Mary Stewart, Scarinish harbour, Scarinish Hotel, the ringing stone, Nester and Gavin Carter’s bakery and bread making, school bus driven by butcher Donald MacLean, The Reef, livestock health, Balephetrish, Mannal, Balemartine, Baugh, Tiree High School, children singing a traditional Gaelic hunting song, accordion music and several accordionists, Gaelic songs sung by locals at a ceilidh, thatched houses and thatching with Hector Brown, Alexander MacNeill’s opinions on thatched houses (1985),  Am Bail Ur in Balephuil, Iain MacKinnon talking in Gaelic and English in his house at Kilmoluaig, Hynish harbour and buildings, harvesting and stooks, Cornaig mill, livestock sales, airport, bands, Balevullin, An Iodhlann, Tiree Music Festival, Travee, aerial view of a seal swimming, bicycles, schoolyard games, sheep shearing, Gott Bay pier, cattle, pipe music, shops, ships, Vaul, timelapse film of the sky as the sun sets and rises, young Eilidh Campbell and her brother talk in Gaelic about life on Tiree. Other people include: Ann Carter, Douglas Carter, Sinclair Carter, Olwen Carter, Monica Smith (nee Davis), Neil MacPhail, Angus MacPhail, Mairi Campbell, Bernard Smith, Iain MacDonald, Iain Brown, Iain MacLean, Myra Brown, Hector Campbell, Alex MacArthur, Gordon Connell.


DVD film of the interior of Iain MacKinnon’s (Iain Chaluim) thatched house at Kilmoluaig in 1997. Iain Chaluim is seated by his hearth speaking with Iain Patterson, East Linton, while the camera pans the inside of the house, focusing on a variety of objects: medicines, tea caddies, photo of a baby, the range, glassware, wall clock, crockery, the interior of the porch. Furniture and a gas cooker, radio and kerosene lamp are also visible. The sound is muffled although Iain Chaluim can be heard to say “I don’t think Dr Holliday approves…very nice man”, then both Iain’s prepare roll-up cigarettes. Another unidentified crofter is present briefly at the start of the film. (5 minutes).

Access to this film is partially restricted


Newspaper article about help for residents of thatched houses, 1981

Cutting from the Glasgow Herald about a task force set up by Argyll & Bute Council to help improve the living conditions in 14 houses on Tiree through restoration and modernisation. Features photographs of John MacKinnon, Kilmoluaig, and of Alastair MacDonald and his neice Rena. Includes photocopies of original.


Thatching at ‘Cnoc Bhiosta’

Photograph of Lachie MacLean, Iain and Hugh MacKinnon thatching at ‘Cnoc Bhiosta’ in Kilmoluaig.


Courtesy of Mrs Fiona Munn

Lachie MacLean, Iain and Hugh MacKinnon are pictured here thatching Iain’s house at ‘Cnoc Bhiosta’ in Kilmoluaig. Initially, the thatch is laid over a layer of turfs or sgrothan which are pinned or tied to the roof timbers.

The main roof timbers, ‘ceanna-mhaidean’ or couples, usually of oak, run from the inner wall head to the apex of the roof. Those at the rear are about a foot shorter making the back of the roof slightly steeper than the front. The couples are held together by one or two timbers, making an A-frame.

On top of the couples two or three purlins run lengthwise along the house, over which is laid a layer of finer branches, often hazel. The upper purlins are joined by short lengths of wood which give the roofs their distinctively round shape and allow the thatchers to stand easily on the top.

Colour photograph of thatching at Iain MacKinnon`s croft house in Kilmoluaig.

Thatching Iain MacKinnon`s croft house in Kilmoluaig. L-R: Lachie MacLean, Kilmoluaig; Iain MacKinnon (Iain Chaluim), Kilmoluaig; Iain`s brother Hugh MacKinnon (Eoghann Chaluim), Crossapol.