News round-up / House repairs slower than average, new CLAN appointment, drug driving laws in force, Business Gateway events

THE AVERAGE time taken for non-emergency repairs to be carried out in Shetland Islands Council houses is over double the Scottish average.

A report card on the council’s housing in 2018/19 showed that the average time was 17.3 days, compared to a Scottish average of 6.6 days.

It also showed that 183 council properties were let during the year, while 49 people were nominated for Hjaltland Housing Association.


The council is also advising tenants that for six to eight weeks from 21 October a satisfaction survey will take place.

Someone from the company Knowledge Partnership may phone or visit tenants at home, with the goal of interviewing 700 people about the council’s housing service.

Lindsey Manson.

CLAN Cancer Support has appointed a dedicated children and family support worker in Shetland who will travel to schools and homes to provide help to people affected by cancer.

Lindsey Manson will aim to help young people understand how they are feeling and encourage families to work together to open up to each other.


“A cancer diagnosis is difficult for adults and can also have a deep effect young people,” she said.

“My role as the children and family support worker in Shetland is to work with anyone affected by cancer, and to build an environment in which we can have fun and promote understanding and awareness of cancer and the impacts it can have on a person, family or community.”

NEW drug driving laws came into force today (Monday) in Scotland.

Police will carry out testing using mouth swabs for any motorist they suspect of drug driving, or who has been involved in an accident or stopped for a traffic offence.


There will be a zero tolerance approach to the eight drugs “most associated with illegal use”, including cannabis, heroin and cocaine.

Drugs associated with medical use, such as diazepam and methadone, will have limits based on impairment and road safety.

Justice Secretary Humza Yousaf said: “Alongside our stringent drink driving limits, these new curbs will ensure Scotland’s law enforcement agencies have the most robust powers in the UK to tackle impaired and unsafe driving in order to keep people safe.”

BUSINESS Gateway Scotland helped over 44,000 people across the country “meet their business goals” in 2018/19.

The organisation’s Shetland branch, meanwhile, is holding a handful of free events at Train Shetland in Lerwick in November. They are:

  • Becoming an Employer – 8 Nov, 9.30am
  • How to Get Found Online: Search Engine Optimisation – 12 Nov, 1.30pm
  • Business Start Up Course – 30 Nov, 9.30am

Kirsten Nicolson from Business Gateway Shetland said: “Our local advisers provide free, face-to-face support for businesses of all sizes.

“Central to helping our customers succeed is our ability to listen to what businesses need, find the pieces they are missing, deliver the right support and make the right connections.”