I am the Eigg (post)man

“Easily the most pleasurable aspect of working on assignment as a documentary photographer is meeting and getting to know the people you photograph. One of my most memorable experiences was being commissioned to travel to the Hebridean island of Eigg to do a profile of the island’s postman, John Cormack. Like the protagonists in the famous Bill Forsyth film ‘Local Hero’, John wasn’t only responsible for delivering the mail every day; he had a variety of tasks and jobs which made him totally indispensable. Indeed, as the CalMac ferry berthed at the tiny jetty, it was John who was tying up the mooring ropes. Having already lived on the island for 25 years when I came across him, he was very much part of a community which was in a state of great change. The island had been bought by its residents a couple of years previously and there was a tangible air of excitement and energy. That having been said, John liked nothing better than relaxing with his pals at Laig Bay, overlooking the neighbouring island of Rum, playing boules and shooting the breeze. It was one of those assignments for me which never felt like work. Surrounded by fresh air, gorgeous scenery and friendly locals makes the job an easy one. My only regret is that I haven’t yet managed a return visit.”

Colin McPherson

John Cormack depositing the daily post on the Caledonian MacBrayne ferry Loch Nevis as it is berthed at Galmisdale, Eigg on its daily run from Mallaig on the Scottish mainland.
Photograph © Colin McPherson, 2012, all rights reserved.

Postman John Cormack working in the tiny post office at Galmisdale on the Hebridean island of Eigg.
Photograph © Colin McPherson, 2012, all rights reserved.

Kildonan on the Hebridean island of Eigg.
Photograph © Colin McPherson, 2012, all rights reserved.

Postman John Cormack delivering the mail at Laig Bay on the Hebridean island of Eigg.
Photograph © Colin McPherson, 2012, all rights reserved.

Postman John Cormack delivering the mail to the only primary school on the Hebridean island of Eigg.
Photograph © Colin McPherson, 2012, all rights reserved.

Kildonan on the Hebridean island of Eigg with the Sgurr of Eigg, the island’s highest point, visible in the background.
Photograph © Colin McPherson, 2012, all rights reserved.

Island postman John Cormack pictured in front of his home for the last 25 years at Laig Bay, Eigg.
Photograph © Colin McPherson, 2012, all rights reserved.

Postman John Cormack and friends Islanders playing boules on the beach at Laig Bay, Eigg.
Photograph © Colin McPherson, 2012, all rights reserved.

Postman John Cormack ties up the Caledonian MacBrayne ferry Loch Nevis as it berths at Galmisdale, Eigg.
Photograph © Colin McPherson, 2012, all rights reserved.

John Cormack drives his Royal Mail van to the pier at Galmisdale on the Hebridean island of Eigg to meet the incoming ferry from Mallaig.
Photograph © Colin McPherson, 2012, all rights reserved.

 

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