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Collection TS17 - Stòras Uibhist / Sealladh na Beinne Mòire, community owned estate, South Uist

Identity area

Reference code



Stòras Uibhist / Sealladh na Beinne Mòire, community owned estate, South Uist


  • 1856-2006 (Creation)

Level of description


Extent and medium

c25 linear metres

Context area

Name of creator

Sealladh na Beinne Mòire (2005-)

Administrative history

In 1838, following the decline in power of the Clanranald and MacNeill’s of Barra, Colonel Gordon of Cluny, Aberdeenshire, acquired the islands of Benbecula, South Uist and Barra and the Bishop Isles, creating the “Long Island” estate.

After Colonel Gordon’s death in 1858 the estate passed to his son John Gordon of Cluny. On his death in 1878 the estate passed to his second wife and widow, Lady Gordon. She continued as proprietor until her death in 1932, having remarried Sir Reginald Cathcart in 1880. After her death the Estate was managed by her trustees before being sold in 1944 to the London banker, Herman Anton Andreae.

In 1960, the Islands passed to a syndicate of sporting enthusiasts who managed the island, creating South Uist Estates Ltd in 1969.

Over the years, parts of the Long Island Estate were sold, specifically Barra and the Bishop Isles, parts of Benbecula and sections of South Uist to various bodies including the Ministry of Defence, Scottish Natural Heritage and private landlords.

In 2006, the entire share capital of South Uist Estates Ltd was acquired in a community buy out through a new company, Sealladh na Beinne Mòire, established in 2005 for the purpose. Sealladh and South Uist Estates Ltd is managed by a board of seven directors who in turn are directors of the following South Uist Estates Ltd subsidiary companies:

• Stòras Uibhist Ltd (est. 2004, VAT registered)
• South Uist Renewable Ltd (est. 2009 to manage the Loch Carnan wind farm development)
• Lochboisdale Development Ltd (est. 2011)

In 2011, the estate encompasses 93,000 acres of land across South Uist, Eriskay and Benbecula with a population of c3,000 including 850 tenant crofters. Major industries continue to be tourism, aquaculture, fishing, food processing, construction and local services. As well as managing the estate, it also manages the hire of Grogarry Lodge and is actively pursuing community-interest and income generation projects including wind farming.

Archival history

Immediate source of acquisition or transfer

Content and structure area

Scope and content

The papers are divided into section that reflects the ownership of the estate over time.

I. Gordons of Cluny, Lady Gordon Cathcart and her Trustees
Estate office and staff 1912-1936; Grogarry lodge 1902-1974; Farms n.d.; Inns & hotels 1880-1958; Piers and fisheries 1882-1942; Roads and public services including communications, schools, public health, poor law, police, burial grounds and water n.d.; Land management including drainage, coastal protection, fishing, shooting, aquaculture, peat n.d.; Mills n.d.; Factorial correspondence n.d.; Draft Factory Accounts, 1887-1917 (incomplete); Estate Accounts 1908-1941; Notes on Accounts 1902-1928 (incomplete); Ledgers (27 volumes, incomplete); Benbecula rentals 1856-1891; South Uist rentals 1831-1944; Eriskay rentals 1911-1944; Townships records for Benbecula, South Uist and Eriskay; Individual holdings, feus and properties (no content); Maps and plans; Crofters

II. Herman Anton Andreae
Factors files; crofters correspondence; rentals; township papers; papers regarding individual wills; Grogarry Lodge papers c1944-1960

III. South Uist Estates Ltd
Syndicate papers; estate management papers; crofters correspondence; district rentals; township papers; shooting and fishing papers 1960-2006

IV Modern records / records still in use
Maps and plans 19th-20th cent,; chartularies 19th-20th cent; croft files 1895-present

Appraisal, destruction and scheduling


System of arrangement

The records are arranged in periods of ownership by individual proprietors. With these groups, records are grouped into series.

Conditions of access and use area

Conditions governing access

Records held privately. Please contact Tasglann nan Eilean Siar in the first instance.

Conditions governing reproduction

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Physical characteristics and technical requirements

Finding aids

A summary catalogue of the collection is available online at

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