St. Kilda

St. Kilda abandoned! 90 years ago today St. Kilda, a small island 40 miles west of North Uist, Outer Hebrides was evacuated because life on the island had become unsustainable. After a particularly severe winter, an influenza epidemic had killed many of the Gaelic speaking residents, leaving only 36 to move to the mainland.

Tourists and a change in their religious practices had introduced elements which led to a different way of life which was not compatible to island life and a primitive culture which had lasted for 2,000 years ended.

Today it is the essential breeding ground for gannets, puffin, fulmar, great skua and kittiwake. It is a nature reserve managed by Scottish National Heritage.The island has the highest sea cliff in Britain and is also the home of the Neolithic Soay sheep.