Tag Archives: naafis


Photocopy of a typed transcript of a taped interview with sisters Margaret MacKinnon and Katie MacKinnon, Heanish, by Calum MacKinnon of Seattle (and Balinoe), in 1991 at Braeside, Heanish.

Extract: “Auntie Maggie and Auntie Katie agreed to do this tape interview with me on a cold April’s day in 1991. I had dropped by Braeside on the way back from a buisness trip in Europe. It was mostly Auntie Maggie who did the talking with Katie chipping in with the odd comment. They talked about their childhood living on the island and life during the war years.”

Click here to view transcript 2016.45.1


Metal dessert spoon engraved with ‘NAAFI’ on the handle and encrusted with dark substance. Found in the ground in a stackyard in Barrapol in 2016, it would originally have been part of the cutlery stock of one of the RAF NAAFIs on Tiree (probably Hough) during WWII, but has since been used for mixing paint/varnish/glue on the croft.



Booklet `The Wind that Shook the Barley` 1999

Booklet about Tiree`s role during WWII, the RAF personnel stationed here, new infrastructure, the effect on the lives of local people, the Home Guard, men off to fight, air accidents and shipwrecks. Researched by Dr John Holliday for a summer exhibition at An Iodhlann.


Digitised booklet `A Guide to RAF Tiree`

Digitised book of 20+ annotated maps of RAF buildings and infrastructure on Tiree during WWII. Published by An Iodhlann. Printed in 1999 by Tiree Community Business limited. Photocopy stored in filing cabinet 9 drawer 2.


Audio cassette recording of Willie and Effie Dickie of Caoles talking to Dr John Holliday in January 1999.

Willie and Effie Dickie of Caoles talks to Dr John Holliday in January 1999 about their early life and schooling, the start of World War II, Effie’s work in the NAAFI in Tiree, dances and entertainment, rationing and egg-collecting, Willie’s time in the RAF, his arrival in Tiree, the snow in 1943, servicing aircraft, air-sea rescue, 281 Squadron, life in Nissen huts, football and table tennis, the RAF station magazine, war news on the radio and censorship, discipline, church services, RAF doctors and shortages during the war.


Black and white photograph of Crossapol NAAFI personnel.

Crossapol NAAFI personnel. L-R: (back) Neil MacDonald (Nìall Dubh), Kenovay; (middle) unknown ; Annie Ross, Campeltown or Islay; Eliza MacLean, Balephetrish; Marion MacDonald, Kenovay; Cathy MacKinnon, Kilmoluaig; Sheena MacKinnon, Cornaigbeg; Chrissie Shaw, Skye; unknown; Effie MacKinnon, Caoles (m. Willie Dickie); unknown; unknown; Chrissie Murray, Lewis; unknown; (front) unknown store manager; Isobel MacDonald (Johnston), Milton; unknown cook, Barra; unknown cook, Lewis; Manageress Flora MacDonald, Lochmaddy; Dollie MacLean (MacCallum), Hough, cook; Cathy MacLean, Heylipol, cook; Betty Campbell, Skye, cook; Adam, van driver; Effie MacDonald, Kinlochleven.



Hough NAAFI in March 1943

Photograph of Hough NAAFI in March 1943.


Courtesy of Mr Willie Dickie

There were two NAAFIs (Navy, Army and Air Force Institutes) on Tiree during World War II: one at Crossapol and the other at Hough, confusingly referred to as Kilkenneth NAAFI by the RAF. Their purpose was to provide retail services and run recreational establishments for the Armed Forces.

Open all day for tea, snacks, beer and cigarettes, the NAAFIs were the hub of many people’s social life. There was a billiard room and a library of sorts. Servicemen and those in the Merchant Navy were admitted but civilians were often allowed in too.

Hut K2, ‘the booze shop’, at Hough was a popular meeting point for locals and servicemen. After monopolising the beer bar on Sunday lunch times, the local Home Guard was finally banned, as were the Italian POWs.

Black and white photograph of Hough NAAFI in March 1943.

Hough NAAFI in March 1943. L-R: (front) Annie Ross, Pat (surname unknown), Miss Sommerville, Edith Martin, (back) unknown, Jessie MacKillop of Bunessan, unknown, Effie Dickie nee MacKinnon of Caoles, cook (name unknown), unknown, Lottie MacDonald, Cathie MacLean of Heylipol, unknown, Kitty MacKinnon of Salen in Mull, Mary Flora MacDonald, manager Gordon Christie, Eliza MacLean, unknown.