21st April 2019
Established 1872. Online since 1996.

Tree is a big loss (Sheila Newcombe)

As I have been away quite a bit recently maybe I missed it, but is there a reason for no Christmas tree at the Market Cross in Lerwick?

I know in these times of austerity every saving must be made, but come on, how grim bah humbug can you get?

Forgive me if I’m wrong, but I was always under the impression that our tree was a gift from our very good neighbours in Norway. How bad mannered can that be? “Thanks very much for a very thoughtful gift, but no thanks, we don’t want it!”

Please don’t let this happen again. The small trees on the street are very nice, but the Christmas atmosphere has been lost without the Market Cross tree, and the New Year celebrations will never be the same.

Sheila Newcombe

8 Unicorn View



  1. James Stewart

    I think that the street looks better this year with the lights and peerie Christmas trees. It hasn’t felt this christmassy in a while!

  2. Sandy McMillan

    Shiela, you have heard of the Shetland Island Council CUT BACKS, well this is one of them, you would think they have saved a £million by depriving the people of Shetland a Christmas Tree, surely the cost of a Christmas tree is not going to bust the bank, to get it in some sort of prospective £600.00 to Mareel, and not enough for a tree at the Market cross, the mind boggles at the way these 22 fairys think, or are they elfs, make your own mind up

  3. Ian McCormack

    Sheila. I completely agree. I have missed all 3 tree’s this year. Sound, King Harold St, and the Cross.
    Hope they are back next year.

  4. Like Sheila was really disappointed to see no Christmas Tree at the Market Cross, Looking on the web cam the strings of lights don’t make up for the tree. At least when the tree is up and lit it it is impressive.

  5. Go to Kergord, speak to the land owner and ask for one of the many fallen wind blown trees lying about, stick a few lights on it and there you are.
    Bonne Noel.

  6. Stewart Mack

    Sad as it is, in my view, its just another example of ineptitude and incompetence eminating from Town Hall from the Top down. As Sandy says, £600,000 to Mareel, and no Christmas tree,their priorities are on the same planet as their minds!. Bear in mind the £600K isnt a grant and it isnt a Loan, so SIC can i have £600,000 on the same ficticious terms? – I’ll probably not pay it back either but at least I’ll gladly use the money to put up a Christmas Tree at the Cross and i’ll even put one up for the pensioners at the meal club (right up until you close it!) but then i suppose since i wont be a subsidised public organisation in direct competition with Private Busineses i’m sure i wont “qualify”. They say some sense is “common” it seems to be in very short supply within the walls of the SIC! A very merry Bah Humbug to you all

  7. A.Leask

    I agree the tree at the cross is a miss, the street however does look better than ever this year and with the addition of a lovely big tree next year could be almost ‘perfect’!

  8. Sarah McBurnie

    Hasn’t anyone noticed that there is ban on importing trees to stop the spread of disease? I would think that we should include the british mainland as well, we have few enough trees in Shetland and to put them at risk by wanting a few christmas trees dotted about the place for a week or two is not the best way to protect what we have.

  9. Ian Tinkler

    Time to actually grow a few trees in the town. A tree is for life not just for Christmas!

  10. Colin Hunter

    I personally think the small trees on the street look utterly daft and are nothing short of a trip hazard! I could never see the point of murdering perfectly good trees for this purpose anyway. People bang on about global warming being linked to deforestation, yet millions of trees are destroyed for this completely frivolous reason every year. Want a Christmas tree at the Cross and the foot of King Harald street? Plant one!

  11. ian tinkler

    Happy Christmas Colin, we agree at last!.

  12. Ron Stronach

    I think some should lighten up and start getting in the festive spirit. Ho Ho Ho!

  13. Sandy McMillan

    Why can the SIC- K mob not purchase a ARTIFICIAL tree it could be used year after year, they could store it in the Council Chambers, cost in the region of a family night out at Mareel, or ask Mareel they have enough money they could purchase a tree

  14. Colin Hunter

    Fair comment Ron. I have nothing against Christmas Trees per se, or even Christmas for that matter, I just can’t see the point of having to have a ” Real” one when there’s so many excellent artificial substitutes. We have a fibre optic one which is beautuful, in my eyes anyway. It just seems so wasteful to cut down a tree, just to stick it somewhere, cover it with lights for a fortnight, then throw it away. It is a living thing after all, or at least…was! Why, in this technological age can we not come up with something like a lovely laser light show in the place where the tree used to sit. It could then be put away until next year, and perhaps then re-programmed to give a completely different show the next time it’s wheeled out. Just a thought! No “Bah Humbug” from me!

  15. johnmcphail

    “Murdering trees” you know this has to make you laugh. Oh boy it provided me with oooo at least one and a half minutes of CFestive jovality until I realised that you probably meant it. Murder. Oh I’m off on my cackles again.

    Christmas trees are not wild trees but grown precisely for this purpose. There are fields and fields of them south, all carefully manicured, all labelled months in advance.

    This rational I assume you are neither a meat eater (wouldn’t want to “murder” a sentient creature) nor it would seem a veg eater (wouldn’t want to murder some plants”)

    It seems so frivolous to keep the reason for global warming going, after all.

  16. Freda Smith

    According to the Shetland Times website: https://www.shetlandtimes.co.uk/2010/12/05/christmas-deck-the-halls the Christmas lighting budget was about £15,000. Is this not a good example of a low-impact saving? The street has done a great job of merrying up the place on their own. I’d rather see the tree and lights gone, than people’s jobs, music teachers~~~


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