CAB - 7 Oct 2020 - 10 Oct 2020 - Advice

Eighth wool week kicks off in style

There were plenty of Bousta Beanies - this year's signature pattern - on show at the opening ceremony. Photo: Calum Toogood

THIS year’s Shetland Wool Week got off to a flying start at the weekend, with hundreds of people – both locals and knitwear fans from across of the globe – taking part.

The ever-popular week kicked off on Saturday and it is due to run until Sunday.

The official opening event took place on Sunday at the bowls hall at the Clickimin Leisure Complex in Lerwick and the busy night saw a knitwear fashion show and a performance from local folk act Vair.

There was also a knitwear fashion show at the opening ceremony. Photo: Calum Toogood

Organiser Carol Christansen said there were about 350 people at the opening ceremony, with possibly 700 or 800 overall set to attend events.

Over the next week there are a plethora of workshops, talks and tours across the length and breadth of Shetland, with sightings of woolly hats in Lerwick already much more common than usual.

The patron this time around is US based Shetlander Gudrun Johnston, who has attended the increasingly popular event every year since it started in 2010, and she has created the Bousta Beanie as this year’s signature pattern.

“There’s things going around Lerwick and all that, but there are a lot of community events as well,” Christansen said.

This year's Wool Week patron Gudrun Johnston. Photo: Calum Toogood

“There’s things in halls, there’s small exhibitions of local knitwear, there’s the equivalent of Sunday teas but not only on a Sunday.

“There’s shows in Whalsay, Ollaberry, Unst and Yell, there are two plane trips to Fair Isle – both sold out immediately. There’s a lot happening, and there’s something for everybody.”

Last year’s Wool Week generated £526,000 for the economy – a near 70 per cent increase on the previous year.

Earlier this year airline Loganair said it would financially underwrite the event from 2018 onwards following concerns related to Wool Week partner Shetland Amenity Trust after it failed to re-secure the Promote Shetland contract.

Fuller coverage of Shetland Wool Week will follow in the coming days on Shetland News.