Sunday, October 19, 2014

Dune Tower

It has been far too long, over 16 years, since I've visited Dune Tower. In its day it was the most spectacularly located house in the Hebrides: standing high atop the edge of a cliff overlooking the Minch. It was built by Iain MacNeachail (John Nicolson), a Baptist minister who grew up on Lewis, went to America, and then returned to build this house, and a nearby mission hall, way out on a remote stretch of moorland between Toltsa and Ness.

Dune Tower - 1998
The "Dune" name came from the fact that a broch known as Dun Bilascleitear once stood here, and some of its stones were used in making the house. See this RCAHMS page for more information on Dun Bilascleitear and the house.  For a more evocative description read Alasdair Alpin Macgregor's The Haunted Isles. It has a chapter about Dune Tower entitled: The Loneliest Place, and it was Macgregor's description of its history that enticed me to hike out to see the house. It was in sad shape when I saw it in 1998, so it must be in even worse shape today.

Inside Dune Tower
In the foreground of the next photo you can see two rocks that look to be tombstones - said to mark the grave of a man who died while hunting birds on the nearby cliffs.

Tombstones at Dune Tower
When I visited this beautiful spot back in 1998 I promised myself that someday I'd return to spend the night. I hope to make good on that promise in May.

Dune Tower from the south
Dune Tower from the north

No comments:

Post a Comment