Petition aims to save North Mainland hotels

A petition has been launched in the hope hotels in the North Mainland can be saved from the threat of closure.

It comes after it emerged the Moorfield Hotel in Brae was closing on 9th September, with the loss of almost 50 jobs.

A page has been set up by Karl Maguire, who is calling on the temporary accommodation unit at Sella Ness to be closed instead.

The coronavirus pandemic has caused the Moorfield owners BDL Hotels a major headache this season, as it has other accommodation providers.

But the main problem facing the Moorfield is the decision by Total to stop housing its Shetland Gas Plant workers at the hotel.

Instead, workers will be heading to the Sella Ness accommodation block, which was recently given the green light to remain open until 2025. It’s feared other hotels in the area could also be at risk.

Earlier this year a Scottish government reporter ruled Shetland Islands Council had acted out of hand when it turned down an extension request.

Mr Maguire said: Sellaness temporary accommodation was supposed to be dismantled when the gas plant was finally finished but was granted an extension.

“A further application was rejected by the council but overturned by the Scottish government.

“It is this government that now needs to rethink and save our hotels from closure in favour of the temporary Sella Ness accommodation.”

North Mainland councillor Alastair Cooper said this week the mood in the area was one of “extreme annoyance”.

BDL is still seeking a judicial review into that decision.


Add Your Comment
  • Edward Brennan

    • June 28th, 2020 12:44

    I worked in Shetland Islands on SGP when it was being built and also on the moofield hotel when it was scaffolded,it was inevitable that it would end up in this situation as years past and the workforce from Total have cut back.
    Why not aim to have deals for tourists and boost it’s revenue ? It’s a shame would be a waste of a building and loss of income for locals.

  • Wayne Conroy

    • June 28th, 2020 16:03

    As much as I feel for the workers from the hotel I look back and think how many small accommodation providers were affected when the moorfield opened… exactly the same as what is happening to the moorfield now!

    There was never a market for a hundred room hotel in Brae… the only reason it was ever built was to take advantage of the gas plant workers market… that was never going to last forever!

  • paul barnett

    • June 28th, 2020 21:02

    Before you have too much sympathy for the Moorfield owner(s) BDL, go on companies house and check out how much the owners took in dividend and how little they paid their staff in wages and pension.

  • Kerrie Meyer

    • June 29th, 2020 3:36

    In Mr Mcquire’s petition he’s unfortunately misspelt the name of the hotel he’s trying to save. It’s called The Moorfield, not Morefield. However, although no doubt well intentioned, I’m not enthusiastic to support his petition especially when the SIC refused an application from a major hotel chain to build a new hotel in Lerwick. Now almost every hotel in the area is up for sale. Even before the COVID-19 pandemic, the island appeared to be overburdened with hotels that were unable to make a decent profit.

    • ali Inkster

      • June 29th, 2020 21:20

      The petition is to get the so called temporary camp closed as decided by local planning authorities but overturned by the snp administration in holyrood.
      Your reasoning for not supporting it makes no sense at all.
      As you point out it is not just the Moorfield that is suffering from this temporary camps continued existence, so we have to wonder why holyrood under the rule of the snp would overturn the decision in the first place.
      Maybe someone else from the local snp would care to explain because you have clearly failed to grasp the facts of the situation.

    • Wayne Conroy

      • July 1st, 2020 16:50

      And why would they not refuse travelodge? They wanted to use council land and wanted local authorities to pay for the construction of their hotel! Anyone with any wit would refuse such an offer…

  • Sandy Jamiesone

    • July 21st, 2020 0:53

    I think we maybe did not need the Moorfield hotel in the first place , It is selfish to close the camp just so the hotel benefit , Competition is the spice off life and the hotel should either stand on it’s own feet or simply close .


Add Your Comment

Please note, it is the policy of The Shetland Times to publish comments and letters from named individuals only. Both forename and surname are required.

Comments are moderated. Contributors must observe normal standards of decency and tolerance for the opinions of others.

The views expressed are those of contributors and not of The Shetland Times.

The Shetland Times reserves the right to decline or remove any contribution without notice or stating reason.

Comments are limited to 200 words but please email longer articles or letters to for consideration and include a daytime telephone number and your address. If emailing information in confidence please put "Not for publication" in both the subject line and at the top of the main message.

200 words left

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.


Get Latest News in Your Inbox

Join the The Shetland Times mailing list to get one daily email update at midday on what's happening in Shetland.