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Gaelic: Loch nam Madadh
Loch nam Madadh - geograph.org.uk - 1343318.jpg
Island: North Uist
Grid reference: NF915686
Location: 57°36’7"N, 7°9’50"W
Post town: Isle of North Uist
Postcode: HS6
Dialling code: 01876
Local Government
Council: Na h-Eileanan Siar
Na h-Eileanan an Iar

Lochmaddy is the sole true village and main population centre of North Uist in the Outer Hebrides. The island is within Inverness-shire.

The name of the village is displayed in Gaelic rather than English on most local signs; Loch nam Madadh, which means "Loch of the Hounds". The wolves or hounds in question are Na Madaidhean; rocks in the bay.


Lochmaddy sits at the end of a sea inlet and, due to the rocky nature, is the only settlement of any size on the east coast — far from the villages in the more populous west of North Uist. Lochmaddy is situated at the northern end of the A865.[1]


Perhaps the first mention anywhere of Lochmaddy is a complaint of "piracie and murder" in a report dated 1616: "Lochmaldie on the coast of Uist is a rendezvous for pirates" it said. The coves and inlets characterising the area around the village were ideal hiding places for raiding ships stocked with fine goods bound for the clan chiefs of the time, and contraband activity persisted until the modern era.

Lochmaddy was an important fishing community before the commercial decline of the herring. During the reign of King Charles it was the site of a Royal Fishing Station.[2]


The slipway and old pier at Lochmaddy

Nowadays, the same good harbour makes Lochmaddy the ferry port for the island, and for here the MV Hebrides plies the route to Uig on Skye.

The commercial activity of shops and public building has been generated due to the port activity, and today the village has the only bank, courthouse, tourist information office and youth hostel on North Uist. Lochmaddy hospital closed in March 2001. It was replaced by the newly opened Ospadal Uibhist agus Bharraigh ('Uist and Barra Hospital) in Balivanich on Benbecula.

The Sheriff Court at Lochmaddy

Outside links

("Wikimedia Commons" has material
about Lochmaddy)


  1. "A865". Sabre. http://www.sabre-roads.org.uk/wiki/index.php?title=A865. Retrieved 22 December 2014. 
  2. "An account of Harris by John Knox". leverburgh.co.uk. 1787. http://www.leverburgh.co.uk/johnknox.htm. Retrieved 2008-10-04.