North Mainland Notes 17.04.09

Tangwick open again

The Tangwick Haa Museum at Eshaness re-opens today and will be open every day from 11am to 5pm until the end of the season.

The haa is owned by the Shetland Amenity Trust and run by the Northmavine History Group, in conjunction with the Tangwick Haa Museum Trust.

There are many fascinating artefacts and photographs illustrating life in Northmavine throughout the ages. Group members work hard over the closed, winter season to ensure that part of the display has a new theme each year and this year’s exhibition will feature the Cheyne family and the Tangwick Haa story.

The haa was built in the late 17th century for the Cheyne family, lairds of the Tangwick Estate and other parts of Shetland.

The last resident laird, John Cheyne, died in 1840. After that time the family ran the estate from Edinburgh with regular visits to Eshaness for a while. In the early 1900s the haa fell into disrepair and remained so until renovation works began in the late 1970s. Finally, the near end was renovated in 1990 and the whole building has been open as a museum since 1999.

In addition to the displays and artefacts, the museum also has a family history corner for visitors who may wish to trace their ancestry. Friendly custodians are always more than willing to help folk in any way they can and the small gift area is worth a look. Admission is free, but there is a donations box and donations are always appreciated.

Delting kirk sale

Next Saturday the annual Delting Parish Kirk sale will take place in the Brae hall from 2pm to 4pm.

There is something for everyone as organisers have arranged a wide variety of stalls including plants, produce, home bakes, books, toys and bric-a-brac.

Teas and home bakes will also be available throughout the afternoon and donations would be gratefully received between 10am and noon.

Redding up Eshaness

Folk from the Eshaness Community Centre are once again taking part in the annual Voar Redd Up with a clean-up in Eshaness tomorrow.

Anyone who would like to help would be made very welcome and filled rolls will be provided for the helpers at the community centre before the clearing begins. Dinner will also be available at the end of the clean up.

So if you’d like to help clear up brukk in exchange for a feed or two, call along the community centre at 10am.

Variety concert

If music student Karlyn Grains from Vidlin is having difficulty deciding on a career when she finishes her HNC in music at Aberdeen, she just needs to think back to the variety concert she organised at Vidlin last Saturday night to realise she could have a great career as a promoter.

Karlyn chose to organise the concert as part of her course work portfolio, no easy task, but she pulled it off with apparent ease.

Although Karlyn knew she had a varied, talented line-up booked, she also realised that there were many other events on in Shetland including weddings, 40th and 60th birthday parties and a young promoters event in Nesting.

After a seriously busy few weeks pulling the event together from her student base in Aberdeen, and with help from her family and friends in Shetland, Karlyn cautiously set up the sound and lighting systems and set out tables in the hall to house what she expected to be a small audience of family and friends.

Fifteen minutes before the concert started, the hall was packed with people from all over Shetland and the tables had to be removed to allow more seating space for an overflowing audience. Almost 170 people had arrived.

Karlyn welcomed the eager audience and introduced the compere for the evening, my fellow columnist Lawrence Tulloch. He kept the audience entertained throughout the evening with a string of tales and stories while the stage was prepared between acts.

Shetland Central councillor Andrew Hughson kicked off the music with some great tunes on the accordion, many composed by himself. He assured the audience that he was “mair nervous than I look” and while I do not purport to know much about accordion playing technique, even I could realise that Andrew is a much better player than he thinks he is.

The Wishart family were next on stage. It was at this point that I realised where Karlyn gets her love of music as the line-up included her mother Linda and her aunt and uncle. The Wisharts were tremendous with tight harmonies and fantastic accoustic guitar and mandolin playing.

After another “true” story from Lawrence, Linda Millar gave hilarious renditions of some of her self-penned poetry including such subjects as an auld alarm clock, rabbits, a visit to the vet and, my favourite of the evening, worming the cat.

Next to take the stage with her accordion was Loris MacDonald from Brae, accompanied by Isobel Jamieson on the piano. Although she is only 12 and has only been playing the accordion for 18 months, the audience was amazed by Loris’s talent.

She also showed her versatility as a musician by playing the piano in the second half of the concert. She is currently practising for her grade 3 and 4 piano exams and if the performance at Vidlin was anything to go by, she should pass with flying colours. Well done Loris.

Stewart Grains, accompanied by Isobel, was next up. He complimented his cousin Karlyn on organising such a fabulous concert. He admired her ability as he did profess that he even had difficulty organising his grub box in the morning.

Many in the audience were expecting great things from Stewart and his fiddle and they were not disappointed as he romped through jigs and reels with apparent ease. Traditional music at its best – great stuff!

Next the stage was filled with six-piece band Kansa, and the hall was filled with their fantastic sound.

Kansa is a real family affair – most of them are cousins. Concert organiser Karlyn provided fabulous vocals along with the tremendous sound of Norma Wishart. Adrian Wishart played guitar and bouzouki, Stewart Grains was back on stage on his fiddle, Adam Priest provided some great sounds on the double bass and David Jamieson kept everyone in time on the drums. The repertoire ranged from the Carter Famly to a Lennon and MacCartney number and went down a storm with the audience.

To round off the first half, the fabulous Tamar (Margaret Morrison) and Beenie (Ruby Gray) had the audience in stitches with the antics surrounding a “Coffee an Claes for CLAN” event. The sight of a drookled Tamar sitting atop the kitchen table will solicit a giggle from many audience members in the weeks that follow the concert as they think back.

After a tasty supper from hall committee members and the drawing of a raffle which included a huge number of prizes donated by friends, family and businesses in the Vidlin area, the acts returned to the stage one-by-one for the second half of the evening.

The second part was just as entertaining and the enjoyment of the audience was evident by the huge rounds of applause, whistles and cheers each act was given.

After a final set from Kansa, Karlyn thanked everyone for supporting the event and after a quick total of the ticket takings and raffle money, £1,076.86 had been raised for CLAN 1,2,3 and the Macmillan Nurse Appeal. All in all it was an excellent concert for two brilliant causes. When’s the next one Karlyn?

Gardening events

With the onset of Voar, thoughts of gardening have reached the North Mainland.

The North Mainland Gardening Club has invited Pete Glanville of the Shetland Organics Producers Group to give a talk with a slide show in the Voe hall on Wednesday at 7.30pm and everyone is welcome.

Sue Hayward, designer of the award-winning Shetland Crofthouse Garden at Chelsea last May, is coming to Shetland for a holiday later this month and has kindly offered to give a presentation of the Chelsea garden story – 1,000 miles to Chelsea.

The show will take place in the Brae hall at 7.30pm on Thursday 30th April and any donations received will go to the Motor Neurone Disease Association. Tea, home bakes and a raffle will also be available.

Spring sale at North Roe

The North Roe Methodist Chapel spring sale takes place in the North Roe and Lochend hall at 7pm tomorrow.

The organisers are delighted that Louis Johnson has kindly agreed to open the event which will include a huge variety of sales tables, competitions, cards, cakes, tombola, eight o’clocks and a raffle. The hall will be open from 2pm to 4pm for donations.

Chapel members are busy carrying out a number of renovations and refurbishments to the chapel including disabled access toilets, so funds raised from the sale will be put to good use within the chapel.

Shetland views

The late Mary Sandison of Hogaland, Ollaberry, was a prolific and accomplished photographer in a very unassuming way.

In a bid to bring her pictures to a wider audience and raise funds for the CLAN 1,2,3 appeal, the women of Ollaberry have organised a “Shetland Views” slide show and eight o’clocks in the Ollaberry hall next Tuesday at 7.30pm. Everyone will be very welcome.

Interpretation meeting

Interpretation Nort, the volunteer organisers of the “Nort Trow” summer exhibition in the North Roe and Lochend hall last year, are preparing for a second season.

The annual general meeting will take place on Wednesday at 7.30pm in the North Roe and Lochend hall and the group would warmly welcome anyone who could contribute some time to help organise this year’s exhibition.

Transport service

Users of the temporary bus service from the Hillswick and Eshaness area to the Ollaberry shop are reminded that drivers will arrange to take passengers to the Ollaberry Post Office if asked to do so.

Maree Hay


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