The Harris Community newspaper Dé Tha Dol celebrates its 40th birthday tomorrow (Thursday October 3rd) with a quiet birthday party at Tarbert Community Centre.

The fortnightly community paper was initially established in 1979 with support from the Dutch Van Leer charity, which responded to a ground-breaking initiative from Comhairle nan Eilean Siar to create community infrastructure in Harris, Ness and North Uist.

Morag Macleod of Scalpay was the paper’s first editor and, since 1981, it’s been published fortnightly at Harris Voluntary Service. Locals can pick up their copy regularly at shops around Harris, with a few copies also made available on CalMac ferries.

The archive of back copies was seriously affected by the net store fire in Scalpay, but HVS still has copies dating back to 1981.

Tomorrow night’s celebration features displays of old editions and speeches from former editors Morag Macleod and Morag Munro, with local councillor Paul Finnegan doing the honours as MC.

There’ll be a buffet and hot drinks, and old copies to leaf through for the memories. The event is scheduled to begin at 7pm.

Picture shows a masthead from an edition earlier this year. (Harris Voluntary Service).