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Christmas tree at the Cross

From left to right - Gary Bain of Living Lerwick, Robbie Leslie of Northwards, Charlene Moffat of Northlink and Neil Robertson of the SIC. Photo: Ben Mullay

FOR A second successive year Living Lerwick has clubbed together with the SIC, Northwards and NorthLink to reinstate the popular big Norwegian Christmas tree at the town centre’s Market Cross.

Two trees have always been gifted to Shetland as a gesture of goodwill from Norway to commemorate the Shetland Bus, and they are erected in Scalloway and Whalsay.

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Until 2012, when the SIC began making major spending cutbacks, the local authority bought extra trees for Lerwick.

Living Lerwick chairman Gary Bain said: “It’s clear everyone wants a tree at the Market Cross. Buying, transporting, erecting and decorating a large Christmas tree is hugely expensive, so we had to look at how to provide that without blowing our budget.

“Working in partnership, we have managed to find a solution which benefits everyone. Northwards and NorthLink have transported all three trees from Aberdeen for us free of charge and Shetland Islands Council road department have erected our one at the Market Cross. Living Lerwick are decorating the tree.”

Plans for Living Lerwick’s Christmas light switch-on event, beginning with a parade at 3.30pm on Saturday 26 November, are underway.

The parade will start at Victoria Pier, where Santa will arrive by lifeboat. Bairns from Peerie Foxes will switch on the Christmas lights with their wands as the parade progresses through the town centre, ending at the Market Cross with the switch-on of the Christmas tree lights.

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