Sweet Dreams

sweet dreams, bedroom, abandoned


The image above (Sweet Dreams), is part of Nobody’s Home collection.

Attending the opening of Steve Dilworth’s exhibition, Mortal Remains at An Lanntair on Saturday night I got into a conversation with one of the attendees. We discussed the subject of abandoned Hebridean homes and a shared interest in what these places tell us about islanders’  lives, past and present.  The following day I visited the subject of this post – a family home on Lewis, last occupied in the late 1980’s.

The floor had rotted through in places but the living room still had wall to wall carpet, disguising what lay beneath. As a result, some of the furniture was sitting askew:

Display cabinet on rotten floorboards

After a quick look in each of the ground floor rooms, I went upstairs. Two rooms, sat within the steeply pitched roof. One bedroom and the other  used for storage. On the floor, a vintage Bell and Howell 8mm film projector. At a guess I’d say it probably dates from the 1950s:

Bell and Howell 8mm Projector

Positioning the camera a little higher for a different view of the same room:

Always a spare chair for the unexpected guest

Back downstairs, water sits in pools on the kitchen floor lino, constantly topped up by a leaking water pipe. One of the cupboards is still well stocked, despite the fact one of its doors has fallen off:

Kitchen Cupboard, abandoned house, isle of lewis, outer hebrides

A quick technical note: I temporarily switched from a wide angle lens to an 85mm prime for a few close-ups. Can’t beat a bit of mono cassette music while doing the dishes:

Croft blaster

Back in the living room, spotted this on top of the shelving unit:

Flying Insect Killer - Now Lasts Longer!

Who needs ‘cyclone technology’ when you’ve got one of these?

Dyson my arse!

Looking for clues as to when this house was last inhabited, I spied a copy of Reader’s Digest on the shelf below the can of insect killer.  Date of publication: January 1989.

Sex Secrets: A Wife's Dilemma - January 1989

One last pic before leaving… the cool light fitting on the living room ceiling, no doubt inspired by the 1960s fascination with UFOs, the space race and the future:

Futuristic retro light fitting



4 thoughts on “Sweet Dreams”

    • The buzz of what I might find inside overrides any creepy thoughts. Sometimes at night it can be a touch spooky if you allow your imagination to run riot. Whenever I hear a noise coming from the room next door, or something walking past the window, I tell myself it has to be a sheep. I’m usually right 😉

  1. I find it incredible how these homes have been left. It really is as if the ex-inhabitants simply packed a case and shut the door behind them. Not even an attempt to give stuff away, nothing looted afterwards.

    Beautiful pix as ever, and a terrific visual story.

  2. I absolutely love these pictures of one of these fascinating places. They tell such a story-I imagine what often happens is some old soul passes away or is carted off to a home and most everything is simply left behind. There are not too many places in our “modern” society where you can find a home like this simply left, becoming a snapshot of a culture.
    Love the color, lighting and crispness of your photos.

Leave a Reply to iain Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *