Eigg’s community response to COVID-19
Update 29 August 2020
From Saturday 29th August a small number of our self-catering properties will be open. However, our hostel, guest houses, and camping remain closed, as do our public toilets, showers, and all visitor attractions.
Eigg Shop is open, but limited to three people at a time. Please be patient.
With all public facilities closed, we ask day visitors, campers, yachts and kayakers not to come to Eigg for the moment. Sorry.
Eigg is a remote and geographically isolated community with both elderly and vulnerable residents. We have worked hard to ensure the health and wellbeing of all our residents since the beginning of this pandemic.
We are still in Phase 3 of the Scottish Government’s Route Map and everyone here has been working hard to put all the physical distancing and hygiene guidance in place. However, after looking at how to balance the large number of people who want to come to Eigg against what we are able to do within government guidance, the community decided we needed to ask most of our usual visitors not to come to Eigg at the moment.
We realise for many people our decision is hard on you. It wasn’t an easy decision to take and we’ve all agonised over it collectively, as well as individually. Why did we come to this conclusion?
Normally the CalMac summer ferry from Mallaig runs six days a week and has a capacity of 190. With just four ferries a week, with only 40 spaces on each, there are a total of just 160 passenger places a week to be shared between Eigg, Muck, and Rum. This very limited capacity on our lifeline ferry service puts a huge strain on all of our island communities.
Our limited ferry service has been the main factor in our decision, but the number of non-vulnerable residents available to work in our businesses, the size and layout of our public facilities, and the lack of suitable on-island transport also affect our capacity to fully implement all of the protocols designed to protect your and our health.
As a community, a gradual re-opening of Eigg felt like the only fair and responsible thing to do. As lockdown restrictions are lifted further and our ferry capacity changes, then so too will we.
We continue to follow Scottish Government guidelines and advice and are working closely with CalMac and everyone here on Eigg to regularly review the situation. We want to ensure both Eigg residents and visitors remain healthy but are also treated with kindness and respect.
We will keep you updated with Eigg’s tourism business’ plans for the remainder of this year and into next, so visitors know what will and will not be open and when. If you have any questions, please contact us.
Thank you from everyone on Eigg.
Visitors to Eigg bring many benefits to Eigg and we’re very grateful for your support. We look forward to welcoming everyone back to Eigg when all this has passed. Until then, follow advice, stay well and look after each other.
Online in the meantime!
There are lots of opportunities to support Eigg online in the meantime
Use EasyFundraising to give a donation to Eigg through your other online purchases to some of the big retailers, at NO cost to you!
Buy from our local creative and other businesses through the rather wonderful Isle20.com
Want some music from Eigg? Check out Lost Map , Gabe McVarish, Metta Music, Massacre Cave or Gaelic supergroup Daimh‘s online shops for music, subscriptions and other stylish merchandise (including hats and bandanas for all occasions!).