Prosper or wither? (Arthur Holroyd)
The current proposal to centralize the birth, marriages and deaths function for the whole of Shetland, if implemented, is a relatively small but nevertheless potent example of reducing the income of the outer isles while protecting the income of Lerwick. (To dress it up as an improvement is to ignore the inconvenience, as well as the loss of income, for the residents of the outer isles.)
Will the money saved go back to the outer isles in another form; and if not, what is the SIC’s policy for the future of each of the outer isles – to encourage their prosperity or to let them wither? This proposal needs to be considered within the wider context, which itself needs definition if future unplanned and expensive drift is to be avoided.
My wife and I have spent our summer holidays in Shetland almost every year since 1965, which has provided us with a basis for concern.
Nether Popleton, York