Isles Views 28.11.08

Fit and healthy in Uyeasound

UYEASOUND pupils Marcus Priest and George Spence received a certificate for their school being declared a Health Promoting School last Monday by Linda Thomson, the new active schools co-ordinator for North Shetland.

The North Isles cluster includes both primary and secondary schools and Northmavine, Moss­bank, Brae and Olnafirth are all included.

Ms Thomson, who recently returned to Unst with her husband Paul, said: “My role as active schools co-ordinator is to work closely with the schools in my cluster to increase opportunities for children to take part in sports, play and physical activity. This can be during the curriculum time, getting involved in school projects or introducing lunchtime and after school clubs.

“Through providing exciting and fun activities we hope children will enjoy taking part in a wide range of sports and activities from an early age and carry this on through into adulthood. It is a pleasure to return to the school that I attended as a pupil and present them with their Health Promoting School certificate.”

The pupils in Uyeasound have all been provided with boiler suits and waterproof suits to allow them to go out in all weathers and to protect them during trips and in the garden. The clothing was provided by the parent council.

Wedding in Mid Yell

When Tammie Shields and Tim Fraser got married in Mid Yell last weekend the weather was far from being kind. Some heavy snow showers accompanied the bitterly cold North West wind. Nonetheless everything went off according to plan and there was a second night on Saturday when the weather had improved somewhat.

Among the wedding guests was Tim’s Uncle, Olaf Fraser. Olaf, along with his mother and brothers left Cullivoe 53 years ago and the Bolton/Bury area of Greater Manchester has been home ever since.

Olaf has made numerous visits to Shetland over the years but he confesses to mixed feelings because there have been so many changes over time and so many of the folk that he knew as a boy are no more. Nonetheless he has done a lot of visiting and he so much enjoys the Shetland food that he does not get in England. Food like hard fish, salt herring and sassermaet. He is delighted by the number of folk who have come to speak to him, folk that he did not know but folk who have heard of him.

In Bolton he was a neighbour, and friend, of the legendary steeplejack Fred Dibnah and Olaf himself is something of a living legend in the way that he is so inventive and resourceful.

As a boy he ‘fixed’ a wristwatch so that it had a pendulum instead of a hairspring. Another example is the plan, and it works, to heat six storage heaters from a small generator that he has converted to run on waste oil.

Many of Tammie’s relations and the whole of the Fraser family came from far and wide to be there on the big day and while the Frasers have such strong English connections few have longer Shetland pedigrees. Tim can, if he wishes, trace his ancestors back to the brothers Fraser who were taken to Shetland in the 1590s by Laurence Bruce to be master masons at the building of Muness Castle.

One of them married a daughter of Laurence Bruce and that, in koontin kin, opens up a whole new avenue – all the way back to King Robert the Bruce.

North Ness Hall is 75

The North Ness Hall in West Yell is celebrating its 75th birthday tonight.

It may be one the smaller halls in Yell but it has a very active committee and in the recent past it has been extensively refurbished.

One of the most popular of the regular events is the monthly Sunday night quiz. The variety, range and imagination of the questions set by Hamish and Ruby Polson is truly amazing and among the regular competitors the rivalry, albeit friendly, is fierce.

The hall first opened its doors in 1933; it was built by local volunteers and serves the communities of Ulsta and West Yell. The party tonight is informal and open to all, and the committee hopes that everyone who has links with the area or the hall comes along.

There will be a wide variety of quality entertainment, including musicians Maggie Adamson and Andrew Hughson, nowadays an SIC councillor but who used to live in Ulsta. There is no admission fee but there will be a raffle with 75 prizes.

And Haroldswick Hall is 40

The North Ness Hall is not the only one to have a landmark birthday to celebrate, as the Haroldswick Hall reaches the big four-0 this weekend. The celebration will take the form of a concert and dance tomorrow night.

A variety concert will have many talented folk taking part, including the Wishart Family, Stewart Grains, Ian Clark from Burravoe and a sketch from Cullivoe. A new Unst choir will make their debut performance and the Haroldswick Band will reform for the occasion, together again for the first time in 20 years.

Winifred Barclay, Mary Inkster, Dorothy Thomson and Rose Sinclair, will be among those ladies who played in the band when the hall first opened its doors. Alan Clark, one of the organisers, said that, since Pearson & Tawse built it on the same site as the hall it replaced, it has had two extensions.

New toilets, bar and clubrooms have been added, and the anterooms are the only part of the hall to remain untouched and money is currently being raised to renew this last part of the building.

Westsandwick Christmas fayre

Sunday is the day of the Westsandwick Christmas Fayre, in the afternoon from 2.30 until 4.30pm with truly something for everyone.

Rosemary Johnson from Burravoe will bring her embroidery, Ann and Lell Robertson from the Herra will bring pickles and craftwork and Rob Colclough of Westsandwick will have painting of Shetland landscapes.

Knitwear by Marion Anderson will be on show, calendars and photos from Richard Goodlad, and cards and flowers with Rae Thompson of Aywick. And if all that is not enough car boot space comes at £5 per pitch. There are Virgin Vie, Usborne Books, Brae Building Centre and garden ornaments.

Add to all this tombola, raffles, teas and home bakes, mulled wine and live music and you have a great afternoon out.

Farmers’ market

Also on Sunday afternoon is the farmers’ market in the Baltasound Hall, from 2.30 until 5pm. The usual wide variety of local produce is on offer in the main hall and crafts will be on sale in the library.

This month the soup, teas and home bakes will be provided by the local Youth Club. To book a table for produce phone Anna Niven on (01957) 755245, or to book a table for craftwork phone Sarah McBurnie on (01957) 711367.

Peerie Nights Oot

Last week we reported that the splendid total of £805.88 had been raised by the Peerie Nights Oot in Uyeasound and given to charity.

On the day that the money was handed over soup, sandwiches, teas, coffee and fancies were sold in the Uyeasound Hall. This raised another splendid total £327, which has been given to the CLAN House appeal.

Unst careers fair

The wintry weather last Friday put paid to the careers fair which was to be held in the Baltasound Junior High School.

Secondary two pupil William Patterson says the fair will be held today instead. It is the same programme as last week and the times are the same, from 2pm until 3.40pm. Friends and family are welcome.

Yell Sound ferry concerns

In the interests of saving fuel the ferries across Yell Sound are currently running slightly slower than full speed.

Most of the time users will not notice this but for commuters who have to be at work promptly this has emerged as something of a problem. The 7.15am crossing is one that numerous commuters use and the ferry, running slow, or leaving slightly late leaves them scarcely enough time to get to their work in Sullom Voe at 8am.

At least one shift worker goes out of Yell by the 6.15am ferry. This gets him to work on time but it means an early start from home and that he has to kick his heels for the best part of an hour each morning.

The festive timetable for the ferries is all but finalised.

The first draft was unsuitable, in part, for commuters but alterations and amendments have been made and, of course, times on Bluemull Sound and Yell Sound have to be co-ordinated because a number of folk living in Unst are either commuters or in need of connections as well.

Lawrence Tulloch


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