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Section of A970 to close for resurfacing works

July 5, 2022 | 12.43pm

Part of the A970 will be closed to traffic during essential resurfacing work. 

The closure will affect the stretch of road between the Brig o’ Fitch junction, near to Shetland Golf Club,  and the west Black Gaet junction with the B9073, approaching Scalloway.

It will last from 10am-6pm on Thursday.

During the closure, the service four bus, which serves Lerwick and Scalloway, will be diverted through the Black Gaet, which will affect stops at JRJ’s and the Shetland Hotel.

More details on the bus service alterations are available at ZetTrans website

‘Busiest year yet’ for Come to Brae Days

July 5, 2022 | 12.00pm

Crowds descended on Brae over the weekend for the annual Come to Brae Days weekend of activities.

Its committee said they had their “busiest year yet” as the summer holidays started with a bang in the North Mainland.

The Brae hall was busy on Sunday for the stalls.

Football tournaments, zorbing, an outdoor scavenger hunt, Himalayan sound therapy and a parade were just some of the events held across the weekend.

An eela competition kicked the activities off on Friday, with 10 boats taking part, before bairns were invited to join the Gruffalo for a story and walk through the Brae woodland on Saturday morning.

The weather made some of Sunday’s events questionable, but that did not discourage a large crowd from having a browse at over 20 stalls in the Brae hall.

The weekend culminated in the annual parade with floats, emergency services, tractors and a very lively primary school Jarl Squad leading the procession.

The committee thanked everyone who volunteered to bring the weekend together, those who provided raffle prizes, folk in the kitchens, all businesses/individuals who ran workshops and everyone who came along.

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Advertising campaign pulled from airports after map omission

July 5, 2022 | 10.47am

The UK government’s Cabinet Office says an campaign advertising Great Britain to international travellers will be removed from airports – after it was pointed out Shetland and Orkney were missed from the UK map.

MP Alistair Carmichael called the omission “insulting”, and wrote to cabinet minister Steve Barclay asking for the isles to be included.

The GREAT advertising campaign was designed to encourage travellers to visit Britain and Northern Ireland.

But while the Isle of Man, which is not part of the UK, was included, both Shetland and Orkney were not.

The Cabinet Office told The Shetland Times the campaign had been “discontinued” and the image “should have been removed some time ago”.

“We have spoken to our colleagues at airports across the country to make sure it is no longer in use.

“The GREAT campaign is committed to showcasing all four nations, including the Northern Isles, and our current campaigns make sure that is the case.”

The Cabinet Office added that all media space across airports was provided “at no cost to the taxpayer”.

 

‘Enquiries ongoing’ after two vehicle crash

July 5, 2022 | 8.08am

Police are investigating a two vehicle crash which happened on the A970 yesterday (Monday).

Officers were called to reports of a crash near the junction with the B9075 for Nesting at around 12.50pm.

“Enquiries are ongoing to establish the full circumstances,” Police Scotland said. 

Police were unable to provide details of any injuries. 

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‘Scaled-down’ inter-club regatta to go ahead

July 4, 2022 | 9.56am

The Shetland Inter-Club Yachting Association says it will run a “scaled-down” regatta next month – the first time the event has been held since 2019.

Inter-club commodore Roger Goudie said the pandemic had affected the sport of sailing “very badly”, with little activity over the past two seasons.

The hope is that the return of the regatta will encourage more individual club racing and reverse the decline in the sport.

The regatta will be held from 11th to 14th August, with the closing date for entries 24th July.

Entry forms are available now at https://www.shetland-interclub.co.uk/entry-forms

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Five candidates confirmed for North Isles by-election

July 3, 2022 | 9.35am

Candidates for the North Isles by-election have been confirmed following the deadline for nominations.

Just two candidates put themselves forward for the ward’s three available seats in May’s election, leaving the one vacant position still to be decided.

Now five candidates have confirmed they will stand for the remaining seat.

They are: Gary Cleaver; Douglas Stewart; Sonia Robertson; Robert Thomson and Marie Williamson.

All are standing as independents. 

Polling will take place between 7am-10pm on Thursday 4th August.

The successful candidate will join current North Isles councillors Ryan Thomson and Duncan Anderson.

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WATCH: Jarl’s Squad parades through Måløy for annual festival

July 3, 2022 | 8.49am

Members of the Lerwick-Up-Helly-A’ Jarl’s Squad have been parading the streets of Måløy.

Retired journalist Kari Midtgård Råsberg shot some photos and video of the squad members as they took part in the Måløydagene festival.

The squad marched through the town on Friday and Saturday and will be in parade again this afternoon (Sunday).

Kari said the Vikings were always a popular feature in the festival and the Jarl’s Squad had visited on many occasions. 

“The singing and the cheering draws people to come and see what is going on,” she added.

“Many locals had their pictures taken together with the Vikings.”

The four day festival is held every year in Lerwick’s Norwegian twin town, featuring music, entertainment and fun fair attractions. 

This year’s festival kicked off on Thursday and comes to an end today (Sunday).

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Isle of Vaila for sale – with a £1.75m price tag

June 17, 2022 | 2.50pm

The Isle of Vaila – with six-and-a-half miles of coastline and a 17th century mansion – has gone on the market for offers over 1.75million.

Vaila, on the west coast, is separated from mainland Shetland by the Vaila Sound, and is a short 10-minute boat journey from the island’s private shore base into a sheltered bay with a pier.

Selling agents Savills state that Vaila encompasses rugged cliffs, rocky outcrops, caves and pebble beaches.

To the north and east, Vaila overlooks the northern and central part of the Shetland mainland towards Muckle Roe and Lerwick.

On a clear day, there are uninterrupted views to the Fair Isle to the south and to Foula to the west.

Luke French, of Savills, said: “At the meeting point of the North Sea and the Atlantic Ocean, this is a wild and beautiful part of the world.

“The juxtaposition of the dramatic, elemental land and seascape with the exquisite craftsmanship of historic Vaila Hall makes for a quite extraordinary property.

“A rare prize indeed for the next owner but also one which benefits from practical forethought by the sellers with the shore base building providing ease of access and the farming enterprise, farmhouse and cottage creating a variety of opportunities.”

He adds: “This striking location, once home to Norwegian Viking chiefs, is the unlikely setting for a magnificent 17th century mansion house.

“Vaila Hall was developed from a laird’s house into a grand summer residence in the late 19th century and by the early 20th century, lavish house parties were being held there, with as many as 30 people listed as employed on the island in 1901.

The current owners bought the island in 1993 and since then the house has undergone an extensive and sympathetic restoration to provide a well-appointed and comfortable home.

“Highlights include a baronial great hall with massive stone fireplace, full height stained glass windows and a minstrels’ gallery, and a concealed entrance into the functional kitchen.”

Whale of a problem

June 15, 2022 | 8.42am

By Adrian Darbyshire

Inconsiderate parking by orca watchers is a Shetland-wide problem, community councillors heard.

This issue was raised at a meeting of the Association of Shetland Community Councils on Tuesday.

A paper presented by Alastair Cooper of Delting Community Council highlighted inconsiderate parking by groups whale watching, bird watching and loch fishing who blocked roads and lay-bys on single tracks lanes.

This, he said, was a Shetland-wide problem, and it required an island-wide solution. Orca chasers were said at the meeting to have made “twitchers look like well-behaved children”.

Delting Community Council has contacted Police Scotland and Shetland Island Council’s highways division about the problem parking.

At Tuesday’s meeting, Mark Burgess of Scalloway Community Council spoke of being caught up in the “madness of whale chasing” himself in the past and admitted: “We’ve all been there and all done it – blocked roads, parked where we should not, even gone across people’s gardens.”

He said the same thing happened with those hoping to catch a glimpse of the “mirrie dancers”.

Mr Burgess said it was quite a unique situation to the isles and suggested there should be a Shetland-specific countryside access code.

This could be made available to passengers on the NorthLink ferries, he said.

He also proposed that a responsible wildlife watching video should be produced.

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Bridges Project helps support Ukraine

June 11, 2022 | 1.43pm

Three young people attending the Bridges Project have an art exhibition on display at Islesburgh Community Centre.

The aim of the project was initially to support them in the process of creating art, learn new skills and to develop their designs to finished artwork.

The Bridges Project has been running a weekly art class since January, with art work made using various techniques, including mono and litho printing, embossing and collage.

With the invasion of Ukraine earlier this year, the three young people – Erik, Paignton and Sadie – felt they wanted to do something to support the victims of the war.

Their favourite pieces of artwork have since been developed into a six-piece pack of cards, including design styles reflecting the colours of the Ukrainian flag.

These packs are available to buy for from Islesburgh and various other outlets, with all proceeds going directly to the UNICEF – Ukraine appeal.

The group has been supported by Hoswick-based textile designer Niela Nell Kalra; and Katie Leask, studio manager at Nielanell knitwear studio.

Gail Herculeson – Bridges Support Worker said: “This has been a really positive and creative journey for this group, who have had the space and time to design pieces that reflect their individual personalities.

“We’re grateful to Niela and Katie for their artistic support, and we hope that folk will come along to appreciate the exhibition and to help raise funds for the UNICEF Ukraine appeal.”

The exhibition will run at Islesburgh until the end of July.

Sailing in to the South Mainland

June 7, 2022 | 10.48am

There have been some fantastic yachts and tall ships on the move around Shetland just now.

Yesterday (Monday), the sailing ship Byr from Iceland made a short visit to the West Voe of Sumburgh after visiting Scalloway and then on to Lerwick.

The vessel was built in the Netherlands in 1993 as the Bør, then the Arktika until recently when renamed the Byr.

The name Byr comes from the Icelandic expression for a good sailing wind so she needs a fairly good “byr o’ wind” to move her along.

Three visiting yachts at St Ninian’s Isle. Photo: Ronnie Robertson

Meanwhile, three yachts – Kerpa, Nomad and Maude, a Swede, a Dutchman and a UK yacht – visited St Ninian’s Isle at the weekend.

Jubilee street celebration ‘a great success’

June 6, 2022 | 1.40pm

The Peerie Jubilee Spree event has been hailed a great success.

The sun even came out to shine on the crowds who gathered to enjoy the festivities at the weekend.

The south end of Commercial Street was busy with hundreds of people of all ages enjoying the music, games, facepainting and fantastic atmosphere.

The “Queen” herself even made an appearance at one point during the day – looking resplendent, complete with a pair of yellow marigolds.

In introducing the event, Living Lerwick chairman Steve Mathieson said that the town centre was delighted to host the occasion and that in addition to the important Jubilee celebrations, the Spree was also a thank-you to the Shetland community for support of local businesses over recent challenging times.

Deputy convener Bryan Peterson formally opened the event.

Living Lerwick Project Manager, Emma Miller said “We had the most fantastic day. The weather really held up for us and the area was really busy all day with families enjoying the event.

It was just brilliant to see the community coming together and being able to enjoy a public event like this with smiling faces everywhere.

I want to express our sincere thanks to the Shetland Gymnastics Club and Lerwick Amateur Swimming Club for their volunteer help with set up, take down and stewarding and to the others who dropped in to help out throughout the event.

The bands who provided such a great line up of musical entertainment and to the bar staff from the Thule who kept everyone refreshed! We are also very grateful to Christena Inkster, Babs Clubb and the volunteers from the Lerwick RNLI who calmly managed the constant, patient, queues of bairns waiting to have their faces painted and play games. “And a massive thanks also to Derek Hendry and his team at Active Audio for help with preparation and PA systems.”


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