The most isolated island in the UK that has had no permanent resident for 90 years because life is too tough is to get a new £5.5m visitor centre – 40 miles away.
St Kilda – a UNESCO World Heritage site – sits 40 miles west of the Isle of Lewis, Scotland which is the nearest inhabited place – and the location of the new attraction.
The last people to live permanently on the island were evacuated in 1930 as living conditions became too tough because of regular storms.
People only now live on the main island, run by National Trust Scotland, on a temporary basis to work at the military site, or on wildlife conservation or research projects.
The picturesque St Kilda is the UK’s most isolated island, with nobody living on the site permanently for 90 years
A £5.5 million visitor centre dedicated to the UNESCO World Heritage Site is set to open for tourists
As many as 70 people were living on the site last summer although the temporary population usually sits at around 30 to 40 people.
Now, new images have been released of the approved multi-million pound project, which will see a stunning tourist attraction celebrating St Kilda’s history built on nearby Uig, Isle of Lewis.
The site features a dramatic design on a cliff edge where an abandoned radar station once kept an eye on the Western approaches, and is the brainchild of multi-award winning Norwegian architect Reiulf Ramstad.
He has designed numerous structures and buildings across Europe, including the Whale Visitor Centre and Trollstigen Visitor Centre in Norway.
Mr Ramstad draws from nature for the design and appreciates the unique qualities of St Kilda.
Calum Angus Mackay, of Mast-Ard Studio, who is helping to coordinate the project called Oir an Dòchais (Edge Of Hope), said: ‘Their plans are hugely ambitious.
‘It has a total price tag in the region of £5.5 million, with a world-leading architect delivering a concept that will bring great opportunities to remote villages that have struggled with depopulation and a changing demographic.
‘We proposed an interior space as a kind of lens, where the distant silhouette of St Kilda would project itself.’
The project, which has been backed by UNESCO, claims that visitors will be able to experience the drama of St Kilda without physically visiting the famous archipelago, which lies more than 50 miles to the southwest.
The tourist attraction has been approved to be built in Uig – more than 50 miles away from the isolated St Kilda
The visitor centre will overlook the island, which has not had any permanent residents since they were all evacuated in 1930 as living conditions became too tough
As many as 70 people were living on the site last summer although the temporary population usually sits at around 30 to 40 people