There’s no eclipsing Delting Jarl Alan

Much of the media focus this morning may have been on what was happening in the sky.

But not one to be eclipsed Delting Jarl Alan Jamieson has been leading his squad of Vikings around parts of the North Mainland.

And he even found time to stop and have a look at the eclipse alongside his galley Solnytar – which translates as “sun-eater” in recognition of the celestial happenings. He says it also sounds a bit like “all-nighter”.

The Viking character adopted by Alan is that of Kveldulf Bjalfason. In his introduction in the official programme the jarl says: “My first year in the Delting Up-Helly-A’ was 1991 with what was then the Vidlin squad. We had some spree, and spent the most of that two days in the back of a Westside Transport truck playing guitars and fiddles and singing our hearts out.

“This year I have chosen to represent Ulfr Bjalfason, better known as Kveldulf (evening wolf) Bjalfson, a Hersir and landowner from Sogn, Norway, who led a battalion of Beserkers.”

He thanked his squad members and their families for helping to make the suits, which include pigskin suede kirtles and deer skin cloaks, as well as gleaming helmets.

The day began at 8am for the squad with a muster at the Northern Lights function room, before the squad went in procession to the Galley Shed for the bill unveiling.

Visits this morning included Luunasting, Brae and Mossbank primary schools. And the squad was having lunch with the Sullom Voe Terminal management in the Mossbank Hall.

This afternoon they will visit the Total and Petrofac site at Sella Ness, Brae police station and the North Haven Care Centre.

Tonight’s procession starts at the Brae Hall, with a 7.30pm light-up and the galley making its way to the Delting Boating Club for the burning.

Then the “all-nighter” begins with visits to halls in Voe, Mossbank, Brae and Vidlion as well as Delting Boating Club the Northern Lights function room. We wonder if Jarl Bjalfson will be singing his heart out again.


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