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Last Updated: Tuesday, 21 November 2006, 15:25 GMT
Remote couple's new island hope
Libby and David Barnden
We love island life - if we were lonely we would hardly be considering a move to another similar island
Libby Barnden, Bardsey resident
A couple are seeking to swap life on a tiny Welsh island, for life on a remote Scottish island instead.

David Barnden and his wife Libby are the only permanent residents on Bardsey Island off the coast of Gwynedd.

They have applied to live on Canna in the Hebrides - population 15 - and were leaving Bardsey because of "financial circumstances" not loneliness.

Bardsey Island Trust said they understood the couple wished to leave, but had not been told officially.

"We love living on Enlli (the Welsh name for Bardsey) but are being squeezed out mostly by financial circumstances beyond our control," said Mrs Barnden.

"We shall be very sad to leave but at the end of the day we have to be able to make a living."

Ty Pellaf
Bardsey is 1.5 miles (2.5km) long and half a mile (1km) across

The couple denied they were leaving because island life was lonely.

"We love island life. If we were lonely we would hardly be considering a move to another similar island," said Mrs Barnden.

Luned Meredith, Bardsey Island Trust council member said: "There has been a lot of coming and going on Bardsey in recent years, and really it's always been the same.

"It's not easy to live there for long periods.

"Apparently the Barnden's have expressed an interest in leaving, but the trust has not heard anything officially yet."

Speaking of life on Bardsey the Barnden's said they would miss living there despite problems with communication.

Canna in the Hebrides
The National Trust for Scotland appealed for residents for Canna

In bad weather when the boat is unable to get out their only means of communication is a mobile phone.

The couple said they spent their winters recharging their batteries ready for the next season and producing crafts to sell in the island's shop.

They make their main living from farming however.

Said Mr Barnden: "If farmers are finding it difficult on the mainland to make it work financially you imagine the problems of trying to do it where everything you bring to or from the island has a major added cost.

"It's a completely different game."

The National Trust for Scotland (NTS) has been inundated with hundreds of emails and phone calls from families wanting to move to the island of Canna, which is south of the isle of Skye.

Sheep headache for island farmers
03 Oct 06 |  North West Wales
Canna come and live on your isle?
13 Oct 06 |  Scotland
Island beckons new tenants
07 May 01 |  Wales


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