Harbour News 21 May – 3 June

49 arrivals for the period

Whitefish totalled 26,000 boxes from eleven Scottish trawl landings, twenty eight Anglo-Spanish long-line landings and one Anglo-Spanish freezer netter. Scottish vessels continue to plunder Rockall Bank for haddocks with a monkfish by-catch; despite the lateness in the season, there is no sign of fishing easing off. The Anglo long-line fleet has struggled all year to find sufficient hake to make their vessels viable in western waters. More recently catches have improved immeasurably and a fleet of vessels is currently working fifty miles north of the Butt of Lewis and landing boat loads of quality fish weekly. The freezer netter Pesorsa Dos continues to work in deepwater West of Shetland processing at sea and landing frozen monkfish and crab every few weeks.

Shellfish is always quiet at this time of year and only two visiting prawners landed small shots combined with the efforts of the resident fleet.

Non-fishing was dominated by scheduled cruise vessel visits with Seabourn Quest, Hebridean Princess, Black Watch and Variety Voyager all making day visits to the village. Passengers love Ullapool and despite the weather, enjoyed their time here strolling around the village shopping and browsing. The superyacht Vive La Vie called in for twenty-four hours.  Her Swiss owner had planned a motorcycle ride round the NC 500 but persistent rain put paid to that and the vessel headed north to Orkney. The dive charter vessel Halton spent the week day-running to the Summer Isles and the fishfarm support boat Viking Junior called in for a layover.

We’ve received the terribly sad news on Tuesday morning that Donnie Raigie MacLeod passed away overnight after a short illness. Donnie was Ullapool Harbourmaster for thirty- eight years and presided over the mackerel goldrush of the 70’sand 80’s when upwards of 160 vessels operated from the port for months at a time. We’ll miss his humour and lively presence here at the harbour and pass on our sincere condolences to his family and friends at this very sad time.