Seil Sound and Seil Island
©2022 Gazetteer for Scotland

Seil Sound and Seil Island

A small island on the east side of the Firth of Lorn, Seil lies on the Argyllshire coast 7 miles (11 km) southwest of Oban. It has an area of 1329 ha (3285 acres) and rises to 146m (479 feet) at Meall Chaise. Its deposits of slate were quarried for nearly 300 years until 1965. At one time slate was transported by boat through the Crinan canal from the small port of Easdale. Its chief settlements are at Clachan Bridge, Easdale, Balvicar and Cuan where a ferry connects with the island of Luing. Seil Sound, a narrow passage of water separating the island from mainland Argyllshire is traversed by the Clachan Bridge which was built by Thomas Telford in 1793 and is often referred to as the 'Bridge over the Atlantic'. Unlike many of the Scottish islands, Seil has seen a resurgence of population from 303 (1961), 326 (1971), 424 (1981), 506 (1991) to 560 in 2001, stabilising at 551 in 2011.

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