North Mainland Notes 14.08.09

Weekend of bannocks

The unusually large number of caravans passing by our office this week can only mean one thing – there’s a Big Bannock about to be baked in North Roe tomorrow.

This year the theme is inspired by “under the sea”. Many might think I carp on about Northmavine, but this weekend, it’s the only plaice to be. Let’s skate through some of the expected highlights – including the return of some lively music from the much- loved Vatersay Boys this year who are bound to be the life and (lemon) sole of the party.

As usual the whole aim is to raise lots of money for charity while folk have a good time. The events kick off at 1pm tomorrow with the traditional baking of the bannock. Square mouth shovels have been disinfected to the highest order and, given the theme this year, there’s sure to be something fishy about the bannock.

Last year the kirnathon was won by the Delting Jarl’s Squad who managed to kirn plenty of butter for the bannock in comparison with the Northmavine attempt.

This year the Northmavine Vikings will be looking to make sure the trophy returns past the Mavis Grind checkpoint.

Throughout the afternoon there will be a wide selection of side shows, stalls and sales tables. The treasured Big Bannock T-shirt will be on sale and the Strictly Boston DVD will make a much awaited appearance. Sub-mariner Mowat and his crew will be undertaking underwater tours this year for the young (and not so young) folk. In addition Hank Cousteau has prepared a range of sub-tidal tales and the barbecue teams and kitchen lasses will make sure that everyone is well fed. DJ Duncan and his GTL Roadshow will be pumping out the sounds at the Skate Inn where shrimp cocktails and small ports, among other things, will be served to those with the appropriate wristbands.

Rumour had it that reigning world champion tiller driver Andy Stephen had tucked away his tiller for good and would not be appearing in this year’s Merry Tiller Grand Sprix, but there’s been another rumour since then that he’s now pumped up on king rib suppers fae Frankie’s Chip Shop and is about to show more of that winning flare.

Veteran Merry Tiller commentator Murray Mayfield will return track-side after his peerie jolly to the Beijing Olympics last year and the Bayview crew are bound to come up with another spectacular safety car to ensure the races go off without major incident.

It appears the sport of some sprootin could be anyone’s game this year. Ace sprooter Jimmy Tetley is otherwise engaged in some sprootin in Norway tomorrow and reigning champion David Brown has just become the proud dad to a future-sprooter. Congratulations to Elaine and David on the birth of their peerie boy last Sunday.

In accordance with the underwater theme there will be a few additional events this year. Williams Amusements has developed the “Troot Trivveler”, which is sure to be a huge crowd puller. Runnick Surfin will also be introduced for the first time. This will be a freestyle event where entrants have to impress the judges by making a few shapes in the runnick in the time it takes Toad to put on his boiler suit and reach the byre in readiness for kye wark.

Saturday night will be rounded off with the long- awaited reappearance of those boys fae Vatersay. It’s around three years since they last appeared at the bannock and folk are delighted that they’ve agreed to return. Perhaps it has taken them this long to get over their last trip, but it’s doubtful.

For anyone with a grain of stamina left, there are a few sessions on Sunday. The committee have arranged a hot list of local talent to provide the music and the dancing competition this year will have a River Dance theme. Not to be outdone by those tattoo boys in Miami, Valladale Ink will be on the scene to provide a range of artistic creations.

Sunday usually has a more free-flowing structure to events with Kenny and Colin adding greatly to funds raised by pimping the tuck-shop.

In a bid to ensure folk enjoy the Big Bannock safely, a Challenge 21 policy will be in operation. More details of this can be found in the bannock advert in this week’s Shetland Times. In short the message is: “Nae kerry-ins please and if you hae nae ID you’ll get nae drink.” Noo, I must go and look for me ID.

Splinters’ big three-oh!

After a break for the summer, the Splinters Drama Group will resume on Sunday. Rehearsals will take place in the Brae Youth Centre this week and will move back to the Brae hall the following Sunday. The junior class will meet from 1pm to 2.30pm with the youth section meeting from 2pm to 6pm.

Youth drama in the North Mainland is proving as popular as ever. Currently there aren’t any spare places within the group and it seems this will remain so until Easter 2010 at the earliest. Mike and Di Newbold already have a waiting list of young folk wishing to join the group.

Splinters now looks forward to launching into rehearsals of the annual pantomime, which is scheduled for an evening performance on Friday 13th November and a matinee on Saturday 14th November.

Recently the group has been very fortunate to have been gifted a website, designed by parent Errol Smith. Mike and Di are extremely grateful for the site, which should be up and running in the next couple of weeks. It is hoped that photographs from past and recent productions can be added to the site, but this will not take place until parents have granted the necessary permissions. The address for the site is Long-time Splinters co-ordinator Di said: “As a group we are so fortunate for the incredible support our parents and the community give to us and it is much appreciated.

“Our members come from all points north of Brae, Brae itself, Voe, Mossback, Toft, Vidlin, Nesting and Lerwick, so we have members from many different schools.”

Next year will be a huge milestone for Splinters and Di added: “We are looking forward to a big celebration in 2010 as we will be celebrating 30 years.”

It must be a sobering thought for Mike and Di to think that some of the original cast could possibly be grandparents now.

Muckle Roe Eela results

Organisers of the Muckle Roe Eela were very pleased with the splendid turnout last Saturday, with 23 boats participating this year.

The organisers would like to thank all the crews who took part as well as the spectators for supporting the eela. They would also like to extend a big thank you to the folk that prepared and cooked a wonderful fry of fish afterwards back at the hall where a fine night was had by all.

Fish seem to be in plentiful supply for many of the boats this year. The fight for heaviest catch was closely contended with just half a pound weight difference between the two leaders. The Clark crew recorded the greatest number of species, landing a variety of seven. The boys also caught the heaviest fish at 9.5lb.

Results – heaviest catch: 1 Robbie, Kathleen and Grant Anderson, 90.5lb; 2 Martin, Keith Hay and Merv Jamieson, 90lb; 3 Keith Robertson and Nelson Smith, 83lb.

Piltock prize: Kenny and Addie Doull, 67lb.

Most species: Nigel, Jordan and Vivian Clark, seven species.

Heaviest fish: Nigel, Jordan and Vivian Clark, 9.5lb.

Booby prize: Jim Dickson and Ingrid Eunson, 21lb.

Voe Show correction

With such a vast number of categories and prize-winners at the Voe show last weekend, it is little wonder that a couple of winners’ names were confused in the final listings.

The organisers would like highlight the corrections and reassure folk that the correct names will appear on the trophies. They also feel it is important that these winners are given the recognition they have obviously worked so hard for and apologise for the errors.

In the sheep section for the pure bred blackface, the best of breed and was in fact won by Robert James Poleson for his tup (two year old and over) while in the produce section, the trophy for the collection of garden produce – grown outdoors – went to Nancy Johnson.

Maree Hay


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