24th February 2018
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All aboard the Halloween ghost bus!

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Damien Ristori dressed up as the Mad Hatter from Alice in Wonderland at the helm of the Halloween special town service bus. Photo: Stephen Gordon

One of Lerwick’s town service buses got into a spooktacular state for Halloween in aid of the BBC’s Children in Need appeal.

Bus driver and community councillor Damien Ristori dressed up and decorated the bus on Saturday and Monday.

Climbing aboard, passengers’ first scary encounter was with the Mad Hatter, as Damien was ‘riggit’, complete with his white gloves for taking the wheel.

Asked if he thought some folk could be a bit scared, Damien was adamant, “Up-Helly-A’s six times more frightening.” But someone still asked: “Is dis joost da toon service?”

Damien had dressed up the interior with various fiendish decorations including a wolfman, a pumpkin-headed being, giant spider and various bats among a host of ‘terroriffic’ efforts to transform the bus.

Signs were up reminding passengers to beware of the zombies. “I’m still joost goin’ tae Tesco,” smiled Sydney Johnson.

It certainly brought a bit of colour to a dreich day, Aileen Gallacher said it was “just what we need to cheer us up before the winter sets in”.

Karl Williamson thought “inside was more interesting than outside” as we trundled around the town “nowhere fast” and witnessed the reaction of the folk as they joined the horror highway express.

Damien’s bus of terrors raised £506.55p for Children in Need with collections taken on the ‘Ghost Town Service’ along with the number 23 service to Brae and Mossbank.

To everyone who took part, he said: “Thanks for making the two day event a fun and colourful experience”. He thanked John Leask and Son and Gail Wiseman from The Stage Door for decorating the bus.

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