Centre’s new sensory room

Some of the users of Newcraigielea in the newly finished Scottish Sea Farms sensory room. From left to right: Robbie Burns, Margaret Mail, Ivan Nisbet and Mimmie Moar.

THE NEWCRAIGIELEA centre in Lerwick has been able to create a “multi-sensory stimulation room” thanks to a grant of over £10,000 from Scottish Sea Farms.

The purpose-built centre provides respite, short breaks and day care services to Shetland adults with learning disabilities. “Heart of the Community” funding of £10,214 has been used to purchase all sorts of equipment to create the sensory room.


Newcraigielea team leader Fiona Hillyear said: “This fantastic new room provides a safe space with wonderful sensory experiences for people who have varying degrees of support needs. 

“The people who access our service are very excited about the room and everyone is extremely grateful to the Scottish Sea Farms Heart of the Community Trust for granting us the funds to make all this possible.

“Each year we have more young people being referred to us once they leave [Shetland Islands Council’s] children’s services and others who are referred to us from other sources.”

This type of room is widely used in education and care facilities due to the beneficial effects they produce. A mixture of lighting effects, music, aromas and textures have “been shown to have a therapeutic benefit by creating a safe and comforting environment, where users can relax and explore new experiences”.

Marjory Bowie of Scottish Sea Farms in Scalloway said: “This is a fantastic new facility for Shetland and it is just the type of project that Heart of the Community is set up to help with. To see people using the equipment and enjoying the room is truly heartening and we are delighted to have been able to support Newcraigielea with this fantastic idea.”

  • Application forms for the Heart of the Community fund can be found on Scottish Sea Farms’ website, along with full details of the necessary criteria.