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News round-up / NHS cancellations, Ninian decommissioning, Shetland pony breed show

Sumburgh Airport.

More than 100 patients and escorts looked after by NHS Orkney were inconvenienced by the ongoing air traffic controller strike over a four day period, the health board has said.

Seven people in Orkney have had their appointments cancelled, a figure similar to those from NHS Shetland where eight patients were unable to fly to appointment in Aberdeen, last week.

Responding to a letter from Highlands and Islands MSP Jamie Halcro Johnston, NHS Orkney chief executive Gerry O’Brian also confirmed that a visiting orthoptist was unable to travel forcing a clinic to be cancelled and rearranged

Halcro Johnston said:“It is encouraging that NHS Orkney is working with NHS colleagues outside Orkney to ensure that local patients who are having their appointments postponed do not face a detrimental impact to their ongoing care from this industrial action.

“While the number of outright cancellations appears to be low, this dispute is still causing disruption to services and leaving too many patients having to have their appointments rescheduled and delayed.

“This shows just how important it is that this dispute is resolved, and why it is imperative that the Scottish Government – as the owner of HIAL – must get involved.”

WORK to dismantle a 12,500 tonne oil platform that will eventually be decommissioned at the Dales Voe facility in Lerwick has got under way.

The northern Ninian installation, around 100 miles to the north east of Shetland, has produced oil for 37 years

Contractor Allseas has now begun with preparation work ahead of a single lift operation to remove the topside next year

Last year the Scottish government announced it had chosen Dales Voe as the preferred location for the UK’s ultra deep-water port.

THE ANNUAL Shetland Pony Breed show is taking place in Lerwick this weekend. 

The event, which is being held in the isles only for the second time during the last ten years, has attracted more than 400 entries Shetland, Orkney and the UK mainland, while pony breeders from around the world have travelled to Shetland to see the show.

The main event will take place at the Clickimin Leisure complex with judging under way by 8am.

A parade and sale of Shetland ponies is scheduled to take place at the mart on Sunday.