Community Survey

Proposed Heritage Centre for Sgìre a’ Bhac

Thanks to those who completed the survey -- a summary of the results is now available.

We had 189 respondents in total, and approximately 5% of the residents of Sgìre a’ Bhac participated. Of those who completed the survey, the overwhelming majority were in favour of the proposal. The next 8 screens show the percentage breakdown of how each question was answered. A selection of the comments made is also shown.

The comann will examine the detailed survey data and decide the next steps in due course -- watch this space.

(NB The feasibility study upon which this community consultation was based is available here as a PDF.)

1. Would you like to see the old Back School site being used as the site of a purpose built Heritage Centre for Sgìre a’ Bhac ?

  • just keep it the same
  • Multi purpose. Heritage is important, but now and the future is more so. How can this centre improve our area and our environment? Education. Environment and hub for people to get together and practice arts, fitness and share a cuppa.
  • Social clubs for all age groups especially young and elderly.
  • Wouldn't want to loose the hut. If hut wasn't affected, then the answer would be different.

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2. Would you use the Heritage Facility:

  • A great place to bring visitors to give them a sense of our local history
  • A small sit-in high-quality coffee bar.
  • a space in which Gaelic can be used
  • All of the above, small museum and cafe
  • And general community use. Consider environmental/ecological use. General community use similar to Bragar eg cafe, polytunnels
  • Cafe with sit in (for granny and shen) and takeaway.
  • cafe? (none between Stornoway and Tolsta, except the excellent Mocha Coffee?)
  • Community café. Cinema space
  • Community Play Park built outside it
  • Exhibition space for local artists. Rehearsal space for drama group. Cafe facilities for meeting space.
  • Film night Local artists space Café/shop
  • I don't think the Comann Eachdraidh should "play safe" with the size of this building nor think "too wee" when it comes to creating the space. *Go bigger.* Think about a cafe space. I know you don't want to tread on the toes of Gordon's or indeed the coffee place nearby - but look at the other similar structures. They have helped to generate growth in an area and encouraged spending in the locality. I say think cafe, bar, sandwiches - the lot. BE BOLD!
  • I would love to watch performances and look at exhibitions, but I would not perform or exhibit!
  • Meeting for groups eg craft clubs for OAPs / somewhere for people to go to cut down on loneliness.
  • Party( birthday/anniversary)
  • Play area for children, interactive or otherwise.
  • Possible weekly cafe space?
  • short courses - local history, genealogy, Gaelic language, Gaelic Somh
  • Tea/coffee facilities
  • There is no reason why it can’t be used for all these reasons. It should be.
  • To also include a coffee shop/cafe. Tastefully decorated to attract locals and tourists. There is no such facility in this area or Tolsta
  • To include cafe.
  • To promote local crafts
  • There is a real need for this type of facility in Back District as it currently lacks any kind of inclusive hub.

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3. Do you speak Gaelic?

4. How important are the following aspects of Sgìre a’ Bhac in relation to telling the story of our community?

  • *All* important. Once you start this, the community will respond as they did in Carloway, Ness etc. You *will* need a museum space. Folk will bring you their treasures and trust you to take care of them. Once again - space!!
  • All are important in telling the story of the district
  • All very good and interesting options!
  • Cafe
  • Films and videos of the past
  • Having Gaelic language woven into any/all displays would be very good, rather than it being treated as a seperate topic. After all, it defines how the place came to be what it is today.
  • I found this difficult as all these aspects make the picture of the sgire and its people.
  • Preservation, fauna, flora and rewilding projects. More environmental focus.
  • Tha àite cudromach aig gach cuspair seo ann an eachdraidh ar sgìre.
  • They are all important in contributing to the whole. Gave all of them a 5.

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5. Selecting as many or as few options as you like, what interests or hobbies do you currently enjoy, would like to take part in, learn about or volunteer with as part of the Heritage Centre?

  • Painting (printing?) & framing arts and crafts classes quilting/ fabric art
  • Topics related to local biodiversity, wildlife and environment ( marine and land)
  • Wildlife and Natural History
  • Developing genuine opportunities to use Gaelic in formal and informal settings is crucial for both fluent speakers and learners. Much of the heritage is dependent on an understanding of the language. Gaelic should be spoken at Comunn Eachdraidh events as much as possible.

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6.Which of the following would you be likely to attend or support, or feel would be of benefit to the community?

  • Inc cafe/ snack facilities. The experiences of other C.E. Show how important cafe facilities are to the use of a heritage centre.
  • Informal place names study/chat group as happened in lAtN office. Informal coffee groups for older residents where stories may be recorded if apprporiate. Hire for informal family celebrations where a house is a bit small.
  • Place name groups, looking at maps of the area, continuing what was started in 2019. Informal weekly coffee gatherings for older community members where conversations may be recorded if interesting info/stories/folklore arises in conversations.
  • The Natural World
  • Traditional music/singing classes

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7. Would you be willing to volunteer and help with the development of a new Heritage Centre?

8. About the respondents.

Resident in Sgìre a’ Bhac? 71%
Live alone? 14%
Feel socially isolated? 15%
Member of CEBac? 34%

Age range of respondents:

Plan comments

Some of the comments written on the proposed building's floorplan during the public consultation.

heritage centre floorplan

  • This is a great area to be able to do work as a researcher. Hot desk areas?
  • Outside – Landscape to include removing rusting containers
  • Polycrubs
  • Love the sedum
  • Staff Toilet ?
  • Where is the cleaner store
  • Window between archive room and office – wouldn’t this affect shelving?
  • Sound System
  • Light screening. Lighting Rig ?
  • Cloakroom / hooks to be near entrance for wet weather gear
  • Berms will attract cycling up and down, around the building
  • Pond? Appropriate for toddlers needing supervision
  • Long term maintenance of pond? Worry a bit that this could be neglected. Otherwise love it.
  • Brilliant idea. Wondering if catering could be extended to proper cafeteria? Would pull in tourists and more locals! Snap, café! Retail / café space?
  • Proposed use stated as ‘Casual meeting place with friends, family etc.’ Does the proposed model offer café / restaurant facility to encourage/enable this?
  • Hot desk facility, Wifi, café – ‘warm space’. Fantastic design
  • Area for Tea/Coffee/socialising? Is this in the exhibition/gathering space ?
  • Would the heating system accommodate a heat store fed by solar thermal tubes and this proposed stove?

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