Uyeasound jarl ‘Erik’ storming it on Up-Helly-A’ day

It was an early start for the Uyeasound Up-Helly-A’ squad as they met in good spirits on a rather grey day at the galley shed to have breakfast, a singing practice and to suit up.

Robbie Hunter applies the finishing touches to a torch, supervised by
Derek Sutherland, Jordan Johnson and Lee Jamieson. Guizer Jarl David Sutherland will lead the procession tonight. Photo: Andrew Hunter.

This year David Sutherland is portraying Erik the Red Thorvalsson – in time for storm Erik to blow through Unst. His galley is called Dreki.

This year’s suit includes a black kirtle with silver edging, white sheepskins and green trousers. The squad of Vkings are also wearing “New Zealand” boots, goose-winged helmets and leather breast plates.

Various visits lay ahead of the 20-strong squad is, including to the school and the care home before the burning tonight (Friday). The procession starts at 8pm from the galley shed, making its way down past the hall and then back
to the burning site where a replica galley is set aflame.

Looking to the day ahead the Guizer Jarl said: “We’ll see what the wadder brings!”. We have experienced problems receiving photos from Unst today but a full report and photos from the day and night will be included in next week’s Shetland Times.

Stephen Gordon


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