"The Corncrake" was originally conceived by Dominic Cornford and Kevin Byrne and was published as a community newsletter for Colonsay under the auspices of Colonsay Community Council, hosted upon the Community website www.colonsay.org.uk This website had also been created by Dominic Cornford, with the financial support of Highlands and Islands Enterprise and Colonsay Hotel.
In due course, CCC worked with Iomairt aig an Oir to create Colonsay Community Development Group and eventually this became Colonsay Community Development Co. Ltd. Ownership of the community website was transferred to C.C.D.C., together with responsibility for The Corncrake. The first 100 editions of the publication were created by Kevin Byrne, who was followed by Georgina Hobhouse, Keith Johnston, Scott Weatherstone and David Johnstone. From October 2014 the publication reverted to the temporary editorship of Kevin Byrne and was hosted at a dedicated site http://corncrake.org.uk/ which is also owned by CCDC.
Duplicates of the original issues were archived and maintained upon a server owned by Kevin Byrne, but unfortunately were wiped in an instant by the error of an employee of his ISP (Internet Service Provider). The issues from Georgina's editorship are believed to be on a memory stick, and it is thought that Keith's issues may be archived on his PC. More recent issues may be on the pc of the respective editors or possibly are still hosted on the web. Fortunately hard-copies of most of the early editions were made by the late Angela Skrimshire and are now to hand.
Following many requests, Kevin Byrne is intending to recreate the text of his original editions. This attempt will be by PDFs so the text will be unchanged from the original. It is possible that some old material may be provocative; if so, please accept that this lengthy exercise would be completely pointless if it were to be bowdlerized. If you have any serious concerns, contact byrne[AT]colonsay.org.uk as Kevin is solely responsible for recreating these issues from his private resources.
If all goes well, it is hoped to reproduce one issue each week and to supplement them with an entirely new publication, The Colonsay Bugle, which will appear monthly from July 2023 if it seems to be of interest.
If you have any comment or information that you think might be of interest to a wider audience please contact Kevin - it might be possible to add it as a footnote to the issue in question.
Issue 1: January 2000
"Colonsay Village Hall 1955-2000", poem by Eleanor McNeill; the Oliver Family, a flitting to Nova Scotia
Issue 2: February 2000
Rumour of an Air Service; Opening of New Hall, 26 February; launch of mobile phone system; manse completion and Pantry extension; Iomairt aig an Oir; timber deck cargo on its way; COHT seeks Nadair funding for Scalasaig steadings; how the Monument built Ben Odhran; Typhoid Fever 1876.
Issue 3: March 2000
CCDC constitution agreed; Rev Carmichael RIP; Angus & Jenni McFadyen wedding; Air Service consultation; When Colonsay took the pledge; Gaelic words of "Colonsay Isle"; letter by John Clarke re. RSPB
Issue 4: April 2000
School trip to Eilean Dubh Iain Mhitchel (with picture); IaaO progress; Colonsay Gaelic; the Mesolithic Project; English words of "Colonsay Isle"