(Easdale Island)

An island of Argyll and Bute in the Firth of Lorn, Easdale lies off the west coast of Seil, 10 miles (16 km) south of Oban and extends to an area of 20.7 ha (51.2 acres). Large-scale slate quarrying took place here from the 17th until the early 20th century, an industry featured in the Easdale Island Folk Museum which occupies one of the former quarriers' cottages. Deep water-filled workings remain around the edge of the island as evidence of this industry. The slate is distinctive because of the abundance of iron pyrites - or fool's gold - which appears as cubic crystals throughout the rock. The availability of a large amount of broken slate brings the World Stone Skimming Championship to Easdale, held every year on the last Sunday in September.

Today the island boasts a healthy resident community and is a popular tourist destination, with people conveyed over the narrow Sound of Easdale by a small passenger ferry. The population has consistently grown from only 16 in 1961, and the same number in 1971, to 32 (1981), 41 (1991), 58 (2001) and 59 (2011). It is now the most densely populated of Scotland's islands. The only transport on the island are wheel-barrows, used by every household to convey goods to and from the ferry.

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