This large uninhabited island some 3 miles off the Caithness coast had 80 people living on it until the 1950s when many men left to work on the construction of the Dounreay nuclear power station. From the Pentland ferry you can see the church, school, and some 50 houses.
The difficulties of access and opportunities of employment on the mainland lead to the rapid depopulation of the island. In 1957 only 16 people, including the lighthouse staff, remained on the island. The last families left in 1962.
The island is well worth a visit especially to see The Gloup – a deep pit, well inland, that fills with sea water through an underground passage.
Occasional boat trips from Gills.