North Mainland Notes 09.10.09

WRVS needs you

The WRVS in Shetland has been running a social in Northmavine for the past few months and s keen to welcome new members.

The club urgently needs volunteers to help run the sessions and would also be delighted to hear from anyone who could provide transport.

Club meetings run every second Wednesday throughout the year, with each meeting rotating between three of the five community halls in Northmavine.

Membership is open to anyone over 60 or to folk with reduced mobility and it is a great opportunity for people in the area to meet up for a yarn.

The next session will be held at the North Roe hall from 3pm to 5pm on Wednesday, 21st October, followed by the Ollaberry hall on Wednesday, 4th November at the same time.

If anyone would like to help they can contact the WRVS office on (01595) 743915 or e-mail

Macmillan thanks

Organisers Diane Johnson and Fiona Robertson would like to say a huge thanks to everyone who supported the Sunday teas and car boot sale in the Voe hall last weekend.

They would also like to say a special thanks to everyone who donated home bakes, raffle prizes and their time. The event raised a grand total of £640 for Macmillan Cancer Support (Shetland).

Despite the weather there was a good turnout of folk and local produce was a popular purchase among customers. Tatties, vegetables, homemade toffee and the home bakes were popular sellers on Sunday, reflecting the desire for fresh, local food.

NCDC board welcomes Jane

Monday night saw a couple of changes to the Northmavine Community Development Company (NCDC) board of directors as the company held its first annual general meeting since gaining charitable status last year.

Six of the nine board members stood for re-election, two members previously co-opted during the year were fully accepted to the board and Guy Turnbull, who used to live at Hillswick but has now moved away, stood down as a director. This resulted in a spare seat on the board which was filled by Jane Brown of Ollaberry.

The nine members which now make up the board of directors are: Margaret Roberts (chairwoman); John Alex Cromarty (vice-chairman); Malcolm Thomson (secretary/treasurer); Drew Ratter, Alistair Williamson, Susan Bowie, Chevonne Laurenson, Pete Bevington and Jane Brown.

Festival comes north

As part of the 22nd Shetland Accordion and Fiddle Festival, two concerts take place in the North Mainland. The South Nesting hall was the venue last night for a concert, supper and dance. The evening featured an eclectic mix of home-gown and visiting talent and was ably compared by the inimitable Peter Sinclair of Hillswick.

Tonight the music moves on to the Ollaberry hall for another concert, supper and dance. Once again there is a great mix of fiddles, accordions, guitars and banjos from visiting artists and local talent including Norwegian four-piece Stri Torn, who like to get up close and personal with their audiences as they play a mixture of Norwegian and Swedish dance music.

Orcadian fiddler Diane Keldie appeared at the festival in 2007 and makes a welcome return accompanied by Jenny Keldie, who Shetland audiences may know better as Jenny Napier, originally from Burra.

Gerard McGranaghan and Mark Nagle will provide an added dimension to the line-up as they respectively play the banjo and guitar. The boys are based in Dublin and this year will be Gerard’s third visit to the festival.

Visiting artists will be supported by talented locals in the shape of Emma Nicolson and Alan Gifford, Leeshinat and Shetland’s Heritage Fiddlers.

Headlining the Ollaberry concert and dance is the Michael Phillip Scottish Dance Band. This six-piece band was formed a few years ago and features Michael on lead accordion, Nicol McLaren on second accordion, Andy Kain on fiddle, Graham Berry on piano, Suzanne Croy on double bass and Heather Fraser on drums.

Any remaining tickets for tonight’s event will be available from local shops and cost £12 for adults and £10 for under 16s and OAPs. The concert begins at 7.30pm.

Polytunnels proposal

The Northmavine Community Development Company (NCDC) is currently applying for funding to build 12 community Polytunnels in Northmavine and would like to hear from folk in the area who would be interested in “hosting” a structure.

As part of the ongoing community consultation, Powerdown officer, Colin Dickie has identified the need for facilities to grow more fruit and veg in the area. “It’s absolutely amazing the quantity and variety of produce already being grown in Northmavine,” he said. “There are 87 varieties on my list so far, with more being added all the time.”

“Many people are seeing the benefits of cheaper and tastier food and some even find it more convenient to pop to the polytunnel rather than the shop.”

Land users are now being sought to host Polytunnels on their land in return for free use of a substantial proportion of the structure.

A few land users have already expressed an interest in the project but more are required, particularly in the Eshaness, Hillswick and Sullom areas. Interested parties should contact Mr Dickie on (01806) 544222.

Bowling at the Bjorgs

North Roe group, Bjorgs Bowlers, are making ready for their weekly winter indoor bowls programme.

The group plans to hold the annual general meeting in the North Roe hall tonight at 8pm. Anyone interested in joining the group or the committee is invited to go along.

Flu jabs at Brae

As the temperature begins to drop, the annual flu season will start to descend soon.

Complications of flu such as bronchitis and pneumonia are more common in elderly people or those with underlying health problems. To help minimise the impact on these groups, the Brae Medical Practice will run the annual vaccination programme at flu drop-in clinics on Monday 12th October, Tuesday 20th October, Tuesday 27th October and Friday 30th October.

All patients aged 65 or over by 31st March 2010 or those on the chronic disease register should drop along the health centre to receive the vaccine.

At-risk groups include people under 65 and include those with dysfunction of spleen including coeliac disease, chronic respiratory disease including asthma and COPD, chronic heart disease, chronic neurological disease including stroke, diabetes, chronic liver and kidney disease, cochlear and anyone who is a carer.

Staff ask that patients with surnames beginning A to L call along the clinic on Monday 12th October or Tuesday 20th October while patients with surnames beginning M to Z should attend on Tuesday 27th October or Friday 30th October.

All drop-in sessions will be held from 2pm to 4pm and anyone who is unsure if they qualify for the flu jab can telephone to check on (01806) 522543.

Growers’ group at Mossbank

Firth and Mossbank Community Allotment Group is moving forward at great pace after securing funds of almost £54,000 from the Climate Challenge Fund.

So far the bulk of the work to set up the allotments, which will be sited near the former Fraser Peterson Centre at Firth, has been carried out by a steering group in the area.

Plans are now afoot to set up a fully constituted group to run the project and a meeting will be held in the Mossbank hall on Tuesday at 7pm to form a committee and elect office bearers. Anyone in the community with an interest would be warmly welcomed.

Maree Hay


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