20th September 2018
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St Magnus Bay Hotel owner wants more respect from bus party revellers after fire

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One of the owners of the historic St Magnus Bay Hotel in Hillswick has called for more respect from revellers on party buses after a small fire at the hotel and the theft of two fire extinguishers.

This follows an incident shortly after midnight on Saturday when a fire caused by a cigarette end started on the threshold of the building. Co-owner Andrea Manson said: “Someone was too lazy to put their cigaretted into the bucket of sand.”

The cigarette butt was down the edge of a concrete step which had wood behind it, and smouldered from some time before being discovered.

Staff smelled smoke and phoned the fire brigade and evacuated the building before one of them, a volunteer fireman, put out the fire with a water fire extinguisher. Although the premises is fitted with smoke alarms these did not go off as the incident was virtually outside.

Fire teams from Hillswick and Brae cut a hole in the floor and put a heat camera down, then dampened the area. They finished the job after nearly an hour but the staff stayed up to reassure residents.

A check of the premises then revealed two fire extinguishers had been stolen, and this was not the first incidence of anti-social behaviour the hotel has suffered.

Ms Manson said: “For every 150 lovely people there is one spoilsport. Whatever you do there is always one person that goes too far. It’s time that when you catch someone doing something or stealing valuables or deliberately coming out to cause trouble they should be named and shamed so that the bus drivers don’t take them. It’s the only way to make sure everyone has fun. The rest of the bus should take reponsibility for that person. Stealing fire extinguishers is not acceptable.”

That sentiment was echoed by another licensed premises proprietor who has suffered theft and incidents of damage which they described as “pure mindless vandalism”.

The proprietor, who did not want to be named, said: “We always welcome them (people on party buses) in, but we would like a little more courtesy towards staff and a little more respect for the premises they are on. There is always the one [person] who ruins it for all.”

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About Rosalind Griffiths

I am a Shetland Times reporter covering news, including health stories, and features. I have been in Shetland for more than 30 years.

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