Friday, 9 November 2007

Commonwealth beach volleyball comes to Berneray?

And why not? Now that Scotland, or more specifically Glasgow, have won the bid to host the 2014 Commonwealth Games, then it makes sense to bring the beach volleyball and similar events here. To quote from the Lonely Planet Guide to Scotland:
"The superb beaches of western Berneray are unparalleled in Scotland."

And they're right. Here's the location; three miles of unspoilt, unpolluted beach:


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There's plenty of places for the media to stay on Berneray and in the Uists (there's usually media here for some programme or other much of the time anyway). Accommodation would need to be built for the competitors, but that would solve the problem with lack of housing in the area (joined-up). Some other facilities that can be used are already here e.g. the community hall:






It's a safe environment; there's an airport (Balivanich) less than 40 miles away which takes smaller planes, and this would provide an opportunity (joined-up again) for the runway to be upgraded to take international flights.

The world seeing a hebridean beach on TV (or, more likely by then, Internet-based media) would raise the profile of the archipelago; show what it is really like; encourage tourism; encourage people to move here (sustaining communities); and show that these are not isolationist islands (and other negative stereotypes),

An event such as this would be the perfect showcase for the Outer Hebrides and its beaches to the world. And why not - doesn't the Outer Hebrides have the organisation and capability to hold just one event, in an international showcase that isn't happening for another seven years?

Afterthought - what is the Gaelic for "Beach Volleyball"? Think about it - making the event bilingual through all media would be the greatest international promotion of Gaelic ever.

1 comment:

  1. I'm guessing the Gaelic for Beach Volleyball night be the same as the Gaelic for Guinea Pig! We were in the Tourist Information Centre in Lochboisdale a couple of years ago where two ladies where conversing in Gaelic. I was thinking 'What a lyrical language, I wish I could understand' when they suddenly dropped in the word Guinea Pig in English! I thought I had misheard until, sure enough, a couple of minutes later Guinea Pig dropped in again amongst the Gaelic. It sounded really odd! I can only assume that some words (phrases) just don't have a Gaelic equivalent.You must have a neighbour who speaks Gaelic so when you ask about the Gaelic for Beach Volleyball please ask about Guinea Pig as well!

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