In brief for 13 June 2011

Youth hostel keeps getting better

THE LERWICK youth hostel at Islesburgh House has retained its 5 Star rating from VisitScotland.

The national tourism agency judged the hospitality, service, cleanliness, bathrooms, public areas and dining room all exceptional, while the bedrooms and kitchen maintained their “excellent” rating.

The creation of a quiet reading area on the upstairs landing was highlighted as a popular addition to the public spaces of the hostel.

Islesburgh manager Dale Smith said: “We are delighted with the results of this latest inspection.  Our rating has gone from 91 per cent in 2010 to 93 per cent this year.

“We are almost at optimum now – without physically altering the building it’s difficult to see where further improvements will come from. Of course, we’ll keep trying.”

Earlier this year, the 64-bed youth hostel was voted the best in Europe by users of the influential youth hostel website Hostelling International – www.hihostels.com

Another award for Grieg Seafood

GRIEG Seafood Hjaltland UK Ltd’s innovative WildWaters Scottish Salmon range has scooped yet another major accolade.

Shetland’s largest salmon producer collected the ‘Business Development Award’ for their WildWaters brand at the prestigious Crown Estate Scottish Marine Aquaculture Awards held last week.

In addition, the company was also a finalist in the ‘Best Finfish Farm Award’ category for its West Burwick farm.

The brand, developed at the company’s Lerwick base, is now available in 13 countries across Europe, the Far East, the US and Canada.

Reminder from NorthLink

FERRY operator NorthLink is urging passengers to make use of the company’s luggage storage facilities available on its ferries.

Customer care manager James Linklater said that passengers who leave suitcases, rucksacks and other bulky items in our bars, cafeteria and other public areas were not only inconveniencing other passengers but, potentially, creating a safety hazard.

“Our peak season is coming up and this is an opportune time to remind passengers – for their own comfort, safety and convenience – that they don’t have to take big and awkward items on board with them.

“They should leave bulkier items on the luggage trolleys when they check in and, just like when boarding an aircraft, take only hand luggage appropriate for their travel needs on route. Car passengers are also reminded to leave larger luggage items in their vehicles,” he said.

Arrested

A 17 year old youth has been arrested at the Viking bus station, in Lerwick, and charged with assault, breach of the peace, resisting arrest and making threats, on Saturday morning.

A report is to be submitted to the procurator fiscal.

Noise

POLICE in Shetland were called out four times over the weekend after receiving complaints about noisy parties.

One 18 year old was issued with a fixed penalty on Sunday morning as a consequence of one such party at an address in South Lochside, in Lerwick.

Police said that they would deal “robustly” with any report of excessive noise, and added that this could lead to equipment being seized and offenders being reported to the procurator fiscal.

Weather warning

The Met Office has issued a weather warning for Orkney & Shetland, the Highlands, and Grampian region.

Forecasters said that between 30-40mm of rain may fall with up to 60mm possible on high ground, on Monday. The wind accompanying the rain will gust to 60mph at times.

However, it looks as though the worst of the weather will not reach Shetland, with some heavy downpours and north westerly gale force winds forecast for Orkney.

National swimming

TWO Shetland swimmers are in Sheffield this week to compete in the Amateur Swimming Association National Championships (ASA’s), the second biggest event in the British swimming calendar.

Andrea Strachan, from Lerwick, and Amy Harper, from Gulberwick, have both qualified for the national championship.

Andrea will be competing in the 50 metre and 100 metre breaststroke events, while Amy will swim against Britain’s top swimmers in the 50 metre and 100 metre races.

The championships start on Tuesday morning with Andrea’s first in the pool when she starts in the heats for the 50 metre breaststroke.

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