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A Big Weekend for newly opened Raasay House

08 July 2013

The Grade A Listed mansion house on the Isle of Raasay is hosting a open weekend on 12 – 15 July 2013.

Raasay House is inviting people to join in their Big Weekend, with music, a bouncy castle and activities for all ages.

Owned by the Raasay community and managed by Raasay House Community Company (RHCC), its tenant is the Raasay Outdoor Centre, trading as Raasay House.

Raasay House now offers a range of accommodation from luxury to lodge, a café, bar and restaurant and is a popular activity centre for school groups, families, day trippers and individuals looking for adventure in a unique island location.

Originally beginning as a Big Day Out, the Big Weekend has now expanded over the entire weekend of 12-15 July 2013.

Free guided tours of the House and taster sessions of the activities, including kayaking, canoeing, archery and abseiling, will be on offer over the Big Weekend and various accommodation packages are available.

Freya Rowe of Raasay House, said: We now have one of the best venues in the Scotland in a unique island location. The renovation of the magnificent mansion overlooking the Sound of Raasay is at last complete, and the scenic 20 minute ferry crossing from Skye arrives at the splendid new harbour, a short stroll from the House.”

Raasay House was taken over by the local community in 2007. It had been in the final stages of a £4.5m upgrade when it was almost destroyed by a fire in January 2009. A later attempt at reopening was then thwarted when the contractor in charge of the refurbishment, Rok Construction, fell into administration.

The funders of the upgrade and refurbishment project were Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE), The Big Lottery Fund and Historic Scotland. HIE has been working intensively with Raasay House Community Company (RHCC) since the fire to get the building back on track and a grand opening of the building on behalf of the local community is planned for later this year.

David Westgarth, Chairman of RHCC said: “Seven years ago the Raasay community acquired Raasay House and set about securing the funding package to refurbish the building, and establishing a tenant that would pay a rent to the community. After numerous setbacks and frustrations that goal has now been achieved with the help of HIE, The Big Lottery Fund and Historic Scotland.  Raasay House is now a magnificent building with a new interior and new roofs throughout but looking as it always did from the outside. Our tenants the Raasay Outdoor Centre are now in situ with a full insurance and maintenance tenancy and we look forward to helping them make the house a key economic driver to help sustain the future of the Island and its community.

“Raasay House will be officially opened by our local MP Charles Kennedy on September 20 2013."

Eilidh Ross of Highlands and Islands Enterprise, said: “It has been a long and often difficult road for Raasay House to reopen as an important community asset. We are delighted that Raasay House is now in a position to open its doors to visitors. It is testament to the determination of the entire local community and the resilience of the business that the House is now welcoming people from around the world. We wish to congratulate all who worked so hard in organising this weekend and look forward to supporting this new beginning for a remarkable place.”

To book or for more infomation, contact or call 01478 660 300

To find out more about Raasay House, visit

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