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Tributes have been paid to former BBC Radio nan Gaidheal journalist Ishbel MacLennan, who has died at the age of 57 after a short illness.

Ishbel was well-known throughout Lewis and the Isles as a familiar voice over the airwaves. She joined the BBC's former studio at Rosebank on Church Street, Stornoway, in 1987. She made an instant impact on their output and, before long, was leading the news team.

Her colleagues highly respected her, and as senior manager, she led the Gaelic radio Station to many awards. She became Editor, Gaelic Programmes, responsible for BBC Alba Gaelic programmes on TV, radio and on-line.

Latterly, Ishbel, who lived in Pairc, was heavily involved in community projects and was part of the Free Church Communications Group over the past few years.

Rev Alasdair Macaulay, Chair of the Communications Group, said: “Ishbel was my boss when I took a job as a trainee journalist in the Gaelic News department in Inverness in 1993. Her great skill set and the ability to pass on pearls of wisdom were a huge help to me.   Little did she or I know that the skills that she helped to teach and refine would later be used to communicate the greatest news of the gospel of Jesus Christ. 

“It was a delight then decades later to reconnect on the Communications Group of the Free Church. Ishbel possessed a sharp mind and being a wonderful communicator, she was a great asset to our work. Her passing is a huge loss to her family, the church, her colleagues, and many friends far and wide. We extend our sympathy to her husband John, her sister Morag, and brothers Angus and Donnie.”

Pairc Trust commented: “The Directors and staff at the Pairc Trust are extremely saddened at the passing of Ishbel, who served on the board for many years and gave of her time and talent to many events held by the Trust.

“Her knowledge of the community and its people, history and culture were a priceless benefit as the Trust bought the land and navigated its new purpose.

“Her positive outlook and seemingly never-ending energy and inspiration brought a welcome lift to whatever she was involved with and whomever she worked alongside.”

Image credit: via BBC