More volunteers needed as Shetland Boat Week plots expansion

Shetland Boat Week organisers are appealing for volunteers ahead of this year’s event – with plans to make it bigger and better.

Last year the inaugural festival was deemed a success and new ideas are being developed with the hope that more people will get involved.

Helpers are needed in the lead-up to, and during this year’s event, which will run from 7th to 13th August.

Trips on the Vaila Mae were popular at last year’s event.

The main location will again centre around Hay’s Dock in Lerwick. but popular events from last year such as the ship bridge simulator experience at NAFC Marine Centre and NorthLink ferry tours will also remain in the programme.

There are a number of new events planned with a link being forged with the Scottish Traditional Boat Festival in Portsoy.

Event co-ordinator Emma Miller said: “Last year was a great start to establish Shetland Boat Week, and now we want to grow the festival with more activities and reach out into other areas with additional events, both during the week and throughout the year.

“In order to do this, we would like to recruit volunteers to help out and would appeal to those who are interested in boats, or anyone who would like to spend more time outdoors and on the water to get in touch.”

Plans include a programme of training for dipping lug sailing in the Vaila Mae and introduction to rowing for beginner and intermediate levels.

Experienced sailors are sought to assist with this, and providing boat trips during the festival.

Ms Miller added: “We are also keen to hear from anyone who would like to run their own maritime themed event during Shetland Boat Week.

“This could be in any area of Shetland and cover traditional boats or skills or include more contemporary shipping or maritime aspects.”

Anyone interested in volunteering or running an event should contact Ms Miller or Davy Cooper at Shetland Amenity Trust on (01595) 694688 or email

Details of the training programme will be released in the spring for people to sign up. Sessions will begin in May for around six weeks and if successful will be repeated.

The programme of events for Shetland Boat Week will be released in April. The deadline for entering boats into the static displays or the end-of-week parade has been extended until the end of January. The above contact details apply.


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