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Scottish anchorages

Inch Kenneth

One medieval chapel and one strange house. And very quiet — is there anyone at home? Even in the late 18th century Samuel Johnson found "its only inhabitants were Sir Allan Maclean and two young ladies, his daughters, with their servants". Now there is nobody, at least not all round the year. The anchorage seems quite far out from the shore but is pretty good, even I should imagine in rough weather. There is a very extensive foreshore with loads of pools and patches of sand, ideal for children. And for the grown ups, great views of the awesome Mull cliffs, particularly in the evening light.


The 13th century and long ruined chapel is perhaps over restored with rather crude pointing but there is quite a lot of it to admire along with the Iona graveslabs, and a graveyard to reflect in as you gaze at the view of the cliffs on Mull.


Inch Kenneth House is famous as having been the home, from 1938, of the Mitford family with their Nazi and Fascist connections (it is even rumoured that Hitler once visited here). There is a wonderful filmed interview with Deborah, the youngest Mitford sister, reminiscing about their times in the house. They sold it in 1967 to Yvonne Barlow, an artist, and her late husband, who in 2011 said she wanted to open the house to the public. She actually lives in London so I imagine the house is unoccupied for most of the year. Recently she passed it on to her children. Apparently it still contains some Nazi memorabilia. It is moderately ugly, a strange battlemented confection originally built in the 1830s and then much altered in the 1930s, rather dull. The flatish roof is designed to collect rainwater (and is no doubt subject to leaks). In 2017 there were some signs of life, a windmill has appeared, and a distant person. Something is stirring.


The island's name is derived from 'innis' island and 'St Cainneach', the Irish saint, another of St Columba's mates.

Inch Kenneth chapel Inch Kenneth house

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A graveslab by the ruined chapel,

Sir Allan himself it is said

Inch Kenneth House