By Hector McTavish
Fancy giving up the rat race and moving to a beautiful island off the West Coast of Scotland?
Your dream job could be on offer after a leading heritage group confirmed it is looking for a new steward to help care for an idyllic abbey on the island of Iona.
Historic Scotland are looking for someone who can join them full time in the summer and part-time in winter at the historically important building on the tiny island.
Lying off the southwest coast of Mull in the Inner Hebrides, Iona is accessible by ferry from Oban and Mull itself and just 1.5 miles wide by 3 miles long, with a population of around 120 permanent residents.
It is known as ‘The Cradle of Christianity’ in Scotland due to its lasting connection to St Columba – who arrived on the island in AD 563 – and the important work he began there as a missionary.
This means that not only will you be living on an incredible island, you’ll also be playing a key part in helping to maintain cornerstone of Scotland’s heritage.
Though there has been a place of worship here since Columba’s day, the current abbey building dates back to 1200 when a community of Benedictine monks was founded on the site by Reginald, son of Somerled, the self-styled ‘King of the Isles’.
The abbey itself is still an important tourist attraction in its own right and plays a vital role in island life.
The person looking to take on the role will be expected to ensure anyone coming to the abbey has an enjoyable and informative visit.