The Lewis branch of DayOne/LDOS has criticised the seven day opening trial at the
Stornoway arts centre.
A LDOS spokesman said: "In so many ways the opening of An Lanntair is a very sad
and unnecessary development for the town of Stornoway. It is wrong whether one looks
at it from a spiritual, social, family or cultural perspective and it would seem
many within the community resonate with this view. The manner in which this significant
change has been introduced is also disappointing.”
He stressed: “The Sunday opening of An Lanntair has nothing to do with ensuring equality
or diversity, as has been claimed, and such an obligation can, and usually is, fulfilled
by other less divisive means. Nor, contrary to suggestions, has there been any meaningful
“Ultimately, people have to ask themselves if they wish Stornoway to become like
the rest of the nation, with damaging pressure on family and social life due to trying
to follow a 24/7 lifestyle. Many locals just don't want to see this and value the
fact that we are different.”
The spokesman continued: “It cannot be denied that the general observance of the
Lord's Day locally is one of the things that makes Lewis and Harris culturally distinctive
and attractive today.
“It is a social feature found virtually no where else in the UK offering whole families
a break from the relentless pressures of life which today's 24/7 society has created
“It is little surprise therefore that many islanders, including those who are not
professing Christians or who don't go to church, value this cultural distinctive
and aspect of our island's heritage.
“Given that An Lanntair has the local culture at the heart of its remit, it is surprising
that instead of being seen to preserve and promote, wherever possible, this cultural
heritage, it appears to be in the vanguard of undermining it by their opening on
“The Lord's Day is a positive day which speaks of a new dawn and the resurrection
of the Lord Jesus Christ. Our prayer is that more and more people will come to discover,
or even rediscover, the spiritual and physical benefits associated with it."