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All aboard CalMac for Dolan's 100th birthday

CalMac has granted a 100th birthday wish for a Skye-based retired seaman to be captain for the day.

Donald MacAskill, known as Dolan, was welcomed on board MV Loch Nevis by Master Iain Mackenzie and crew to celebrate his milestone birthday this week.

The CalMac vessel was berthed in Armadale on Skye in between runs to Mallaig on the mainland when Dolan was made guest of honour.

He was presented with a captain's cap and a gift bag of CalMac goodies. Born on February 6 1922 at Flesherin, Point, Isle of Lewis, Dolan worked with his dad making Harris Tweed before joining the Merchant Navy. He now lives at the An Acarsaid Care Home on Broadford on Skye.

Dolan said: "I returned to the Isle of Lewis a time after the war and spent many happy years living with my sister Mary Ann down in Back, I loved going down to the pier and watching the ferries come and go when we went to town, many a journey I enjoyed with CalMac- I have a small picture of the 'Suilvan' in my room - the sea and boats have always given me so much joy."

Iain added: "It was a pleasure to help Dolan mark his special birthday, we were delighted to welcome him on board. He is a really interesting character who has travelled the world, and me and the crew were privileged to talk to him and listen to his wonderful stories.

"I am from Aird, a nearby village in Point, and it was my pleasure to present the hat and goodies to a fellow rubhach!"

For further information, please contact CalMac's External Communications Manager Fiona Borland by emailing

About CalMac

CalMac is the UK's largest ferry operator, running 29 routes to over 50 destinations, across 200 miles of Scotland's west coast. Our fleet of 33 vessels complete approximately 136,000 sailings a year with crossings ranging from five minutes to five and a half hours. In 2019, our busiest year to date, we carried more than 5.6 million passengers. CalMac provides an everyday lifeline service to west coast communities, and for tourism, we play a critical role in enabling its development, which is hugely important for the area's economy.

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