The isle of Ulva, off the coast of Mull, is seeking new residents for a newly-renovated building that is being rented at an affordable rate.
Ulva underwent a community buyout from its then owner, whose family had owned it for three generations, in 2018.
The population then stood at three adults and two children, with ten people now calling the island home as farming returns on a larger scale and rundown houses continue to be restored.
John Addy, of North West Mull Community Woodland Company, which led the buyout, said the renovation of the manse, and its affordable rent, had opened up a new opportunity for a family to move to the island.
"This is an exciting opportunity for a family to come and live on the community owned island and be part of its social and economic regeneration,” he said.
"Things are really moving forward on Ulva and we have ten people living here, but we need more people to build a community. The island feels different now, it is hoaching with sheep and calves and we have now have the prospect of more people moving here very soon.
"Midsummer Day on 20th June marks the fifth anniversary of Ulva coming into community ownership and a lot has been achieved in that time.”
Around 50 families have shown interest in the four-bedroom detached house, which is being rented for £520 a month, so far. Priority will be given to those who live in the local area, are in housing need and have skills which could benefit the island.
Ulva sits just off the coast of Mull and is connected over the water by the community-run ferry, with the crossing taking a couple of minutes. The primary school sits close to the pier on the Mull side.
In the 19th century, around 600 people lived on Ulva. However, the population was decimated when landowner Francis William Clark embarked on a sweeping series of clearances, which saw the population fall from 570 in 1841 to 53 in 1881. Today, the ruins of 16 abandoned townships are found on the island.
Now the island has designs on building 15 new homes with five of them to be potentially created by a social housing provider.
Mr Addy said that planners at Argyll and Bute Council had been “incredibly helpful” in allowing the island develop its own housing vision with new sites for homes identified.
Meanwhile, the plan to turn Ulva House, the ‘big house’ of the island traditionally lived in by the landowner, into a heritage centre has been scrapped given the rising costs of the project.
It is hoped instead that the building can be sold as a business opportunity for someone to set up, for example, a restaurant and letting rooms, although details are yet to be finalised.
Ulva was bought by the community under land reform legislation after previous owner Jamie Howard, who inherited it from his mother in 2014, put it on the market.
The Scottish Land Fund, a mixture of Scottish Government and lottery funding, approved £4.4m towards the buyout. An island appeal raised the remainer of the £4.65m asking price.
Those interested in the rental property should contact [email protected]