Teenagers get vote on Callanish Stones buyout

The Callanish stone circle. Picture: TSPL
The Callanish stone circle. Picture: TSPL
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SIXTEEN and seventeen-year-olds will be allowed to vote on a plans for a community buyout of an estate on the Isle of Lewis which includes the famous Callanish Standing Stones.

The ballot on the future of the Carloway Estate on the Isle of Lewis is to take place in February.

The 11,400 acres of land is currently owned by the Galloway family, but the Carloway Estate Trust, made up of members of the community, wants to buy it.

At a public meeting on Wednesday night, it was unanimously agreed to lower the voting age in the ballot that would gauge support for the buyout.

Teenagers must register to vote by 6 February ahead of postal ballot papers being sent out on 10 February.

The group wants to buy land including the Callanish Standing Stones, as well as Callanish itself, Carloway, Breasclete, Tolsta Chaolais and the townships of Doune, Kirivick and Knock.

The site also includes Dun Carloway, an Iron Age broch and has an asking price of £180,000.

The buyout, if it goes ahead, would also include the sporting and mineral rights.

A ballot of all electors within the Carloway Estate area will vote on whether the they would be in favour of the community buyout.

The steering group said the move would encourage young people to participate in the decision-making process for the future of Carloway Estate.

Postal ballots will be issued to electors on February 10 with completed papers returned by February 24.

The counting of votes, which will be open to the public, will take place in Breasclete Community Centre.