A young Shetland apprentice is to appear in a BBC documentary about first-time voters, due to be screened in the summer.
Gaelan Miller, 16, from Mossbank, is one of 50 young people from all parts of Scotland who have been chosen by the BBC to represent “Generation 2014”. The programme will feature the difference in the young people’s locations, lifestyles and opinions.
The BBC Scotland team arrived in Shetland on Friday and filmed Gaelan at home with his family, taking part in hobbies at the weekend, travelling into Lerwick on the bus on Monday and at the workshop in Shetland College, where he is studying for an SVQ in carpentry and joinery.
Gaelan, who has previously spoken on BBC Radio 4, said he was getting used to being followed round by a camera. He said: “I’ve grown quite used to it over the last four days. You have to try to stop yourself looking at the camera.”
He said four or five people had applied from Shetland to join Generation 2014, and he felt he had been chosen because he was the only one of the 50 who is in an apprenticeship – he spends part of the week at college and part on site. The other participants in Generation 2014 are either at school, college or university or job-hunting.
Gaelan said:”I’ve possibly got a different outlook to those still at school. I’m earning my own wage and funding my own travel and food.” He feels it is important for Shetland to be featured in the programme.
Other participants range from the Borders in the south, from Wick in the east to Skye in the west to give a picture of the whole of Scotland.
The final format of the “observational documentary” has not yet been decided, said production assistant Natalie Moss. She stressed it was not going to be a political programme, although young people with a range of views on independence, and don’t knows, had been selected.
Ms Moss said: “We’re not asking for their political allegiance at the moment. Scotland is at a crossroads and so is this generation.
“The BBC will be impartial and we’re not following the young people for their political views. We’re looking at first-time voters, who are they, [we’ll let] the audience decide whether they’re mature enough to vote and whether they should have the vote.
“It [should be] a really interesting take on the world, a great project which should provide a colourful insight into this generation.”
The film makers are returning in the spring to get a sense of life in Shetland over the year.