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No evidence of bullying by NTS manager

AN independent investigation into allegations of bullying which several families said forced them to leave Canna has found no evidence to support their claims.

Last October the island, which is owned by the National Trust for Scotland (NTS), received widespread attention after four families claimed they had to leave because of the "intolerable" manner of island manager Stewart Connor.

However, the NTS has now said the claims, which also included one from a former National Trust employee, have not been supported after an independent investigation by HR Routes Limited.

The investigation found "no evidence" that the claims made could be supported. It found "contrary written evidence and testimony" that best management practice was being followed.

It concluded: "With regard to allegations by former tenants and the second ex-employee, forcefully expressed through the media, the additional submissions as received provided nothing to contradict the Trust's original conclusions or sustain the accusations.

"The remaining residents of Canna and the Canna Community Association are highly supportive of Stewart and expressed a great deal of appreciation for all that he had achieved for the island since taking up his post."

The investigation involved written submissions, interviews by phone and face-to-face meetings with existing and former residents of Canna and the ex-employee who had made the allegations.

The NTS also said another former employee and ex-tenants who have been off the island for some time were invited to contribute.

Pete Selman, director of property and visitor services, National Trust for Scotland, said: "Although we regard these complaints as closed, this is not to say that there are no problems on Canna. There are underlying issues that the Trust has to examine."

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