20th March 2019
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New bar for Unst

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A new bar is set to open in Unst this weekend after being granted a licence at today’s (Tuesday) meeting of the licencing board.

Balta Light will open officially on Saturday in the former masonic lodge premises at Hagdale in the isle.

The pub is a joint venture of Unst residents Desley Stickle, her partner Leslie Stickle and Mr Stickle’s brother Frank Sinclair.

Work to bring the bar to fruition has been in the pipeline since the closure of the Baltasound Hotel’s ‘back bar’ shortly before the start of UnstFest 2017.

Now this new venture looks set to fill the void with Mrs Stickle saying it will be a community hub “involved in everything”.

“There’s an awful lot of people in the community who have said they’re looking forward to us being open”, Mrs Stickle added.

The premises is composed of a main public bar and a function room and boasts a pool table, dart board, television and jukebox. Plans are also afoot to renovate the venue’s kitchen and apply for a food licence in 2019.

Desley Stickle and Frank Sinclair, two of those behind the new venture.

A coastguard party had been tentatively booked in for the evening of the licencing board meeting and will now go ahead as the venue’s first event as a fully licenced facility.

This will be followed on Saturday by a grand opening featuring local musicians and a ribbon cutting by North Isles councillor and Unst-man Ryan Thomson.

Mr Thomson said: “I think it’s fantastic news. Desley, Leslie and Frank have put in an incredible amount of work over a long period of time to get to this stage. The ‘back bar’ is a great miss, it’s a significant miss to locals all year round and also to visitors as a place to meet.

“I hope and I’m sure that this will be successful, knowing the individuals involved as I do. They’re very hard working and dedicated to the community of Unst and I wish them all the very best.”

About Keegan Murray

Reporter for The Shetland Times. Interested in politics, literature and music. Born and bred Shetlander. Long suffering Newcastle United supporter.

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