Island games and Tall Ships bids get backing from councillors
Councillors have backed plans for Shetland to bid to host the NatWest Island Games in 2027 and the Tall Ships Races in 2023.
A report was put before members of the SIC’s policy and resources committee on Tuesday with the full council due to discuss the idea of hosting the large scale events on Wednesday.
Members were told it was hoped Shetland could bid to host the games in 2027 or “as soon as possible thereafter”.
Business cases need to be drawn up but councillors were excited to see the proposals. Further financial details are to follow
According to the papers presented by economic development executive manager Douglas Irvine, when Shetland last held the Tall Ships Races in 2011 it brought an economic return of £3.94 million.
The Tall Ships Races cost £1.45 million in 2011 with the council chipping in £1.1 million.
Meanwhile the island games which Shetland hosted in 2005, cost about £2 million with £400,000 worth of fundraising and £1.5 million from the SIC, plus Events Scotland money.
Shetland south councillor George Smith said “this is the most exciting report we’ve had at this council for some time”.
He called for the council to get behind the plans and said it would further help to make Shetland an attractive place to live and work.
“All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy,” he said.
• More in Friday’s Shetland Times