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News / Arise, Sir John

Sir John Scott, Lord Lieutenant of Shetland

SHETLAND’S Lord Lieutenant John Scott has been awarded a knighthood in the Queen’s birthday honours list.

Sir John has been the Queen’s representative in the islands for the past 17 years, for which he has been made a Knight Commander of the Victorian Order.

Often in the news for his reformist views as a trustee of Shetland Charitable Trust, Sir John has been a leading figure in the wool industry and chaired the Belmont Trust, which successfully raised £1 million to renovate Belmont House on Unst.

“This came as an amazing surprise when we came back from holiday at the end of May and found a letter from the Queen wishing to appoint me,” he said.

“I think actually it is an honour not just for me and Wendy (his wife), but for Shetland as a whole, so we are very pleased.”

One of his responsibilities is to host royal visits, including two from Prince Charles for the millennium agricultural show at Clickimin in 2000 and the opening of the Shetland Museum and Archives in 2007.

He said the two events that stood out for him were the Tall Ships visit in 1999 and the Island Games in 2005, where he was chair of the organising committee each time.

“When you are Lord Lieutenant you tend to get invited to do things like that. One of the things I have tried to do is encourage volunteers in Shetland and both those events involved a lot of volunteering.”

The last knight to represent the Queen in the isles was Sir Basil Neven-Spence, who served from 1952 until 1963, having been knighted in 1945. He was replaced by Robert Bruce and then Magnus Shearer.

Sir John will be standing down as Lord Lieutenant for Shetland on his 75th birthday on 30 November, when he intends to devote his time as “under gardener” at his home at Keldabister Banks, on Bressay.

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With just over five months to go he still has one ambition left: “I am still hoping to reform the charitable trust before I leave.”

If he is successful he is likely to be the last Lord Lieutenant to automatically serve on the body that looks after Shetland’s community energy funds.

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