ELECTION: Former SIC leader Gary Robinson elected to Lerwick North and Bressay

Former leader Gary Robinson has made his return to the council after being voted into the Lerwick North and Bressay ward.

Mr Robinson, who is also the chairman of the health board, said it felt “really good to be back” – although also “a bit of trepidation”.

“I know there are huge challenges ahead of the council, so I’ve not come in with any illusions about that,” he said.

Firstly, Mr Robinson wants to ensure all the new councillors work well together because “we can’t afford to split”

“We need to pull together and start addressing some of the major issues that lie ahead of us,” he said.

Top of that list, for Mr Robinson, is housing, “because that seems to be at the heart of so many issues that we’ve got just now”.

“There isn’t enough housing, there isn’t enough accommodation and in trying to move the economy forward that’s where it always seems to come back to,” he added.

“Also fixed links. That’s been a fairly constant topic throughout the campaign. It’s been raised everywhere, not least Bressay, so I think we do need to drive that forward.”

Mr Robinson said “the last thing we need is more consultants” and the way forward was to look to the “Scandinavian model” where fixed links are more commonplace.

While Mr Robinson has been busy as health board chairman, he said that with the pandemic easing it was beginning to feel more like “business as usual” and therefore he felt he could manage both roles.

“I wouldn’t be the first who has one both,” he said. “I will be busy, that’s for sure.”

Incumbent Stephen Leask,  received the most first preference votes, said he was “surprised and delighted”.

“The first thing I’d like to do is thank the good people of Lerwick North and Bressay foir their vote.

“I feel honoured and somewhat proud to represent and serve for another five years.

“The people of the ward have laid me with the burden of responsibility and I will do my utmost to stay true to the pledge I made n the doorstep and that was that if they voted for me I would work for them

Mr Leask thanked his son, grand son and his “darling wife” for their help during the election, and also paid tribute to the other candidates for the “friendly and dignified manner” in which they conducted the election.

Stephen Leask.

The third and final seat was a close run contest, with Arwed Wenger narrowly making it on to the council for the first time.

Arwed Wenger. Photo: Dave Donaldson.

Mr Wenger, who is a Lerwick community councillor, said: “I’m very thankful to the voters and for everyone who supported me.

“The two main things I want to achieve are getting fixed links forward and tackling fuel poverty.”


Stephen Ferguson: 66 votes.

Stephen Leask:  310 votes ELECTED.

Gary Robinson: 301 votes ELECTED.

Arwed Wenger: 136 votes ELECTED.

Marie Williamson: 115 votes.

Electorate: 2,410.

Votes: 941.

Percentage turnout: 39 per cent – down from 43.7 per cent in 2017.

Rejected ballot papers: 13.


Add Your Comment

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 editorial@shetlandtimes.co.uk 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.