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News round-up / News round-up: Wishart backs MS campaign, Air cadets launches, hospitality scholarship, poetry shortlist, Big Country return

Shetland MSP Beatrice Wishart. Photo: Malcolm Younger/Millgaet Media

SHETLAND MSP Beatrice Wishart has shown her support for MS Society Scotland’s campaign to ensure that Scotland’s new social security does not fail people living with disabilities.

The personal independence payment (PIP) UK-wide system which people living in Scotland currently apply for is set to be devolved next year.

The Scottish Government has pledged to end PIP when powers are transferred to Holyrood but is yet to confirm whether the 20-metre rule, which states that anyone who can walk this short distance is not entitled to the higher rate of mobility assistance, will remain a part of the devolved system.

“To be fit for purpose, the benefits system must be able to respond to the realities of living with a long-term condition,” Wishart said. “That is not happening at the moment.

“The 20m rule is a crude and cruel test that must be scrapped. For conditions like MS where there are good days and bad days, claimants shouldn’t be penalised for simply being assessed on a day when a 20m walk was possible.”


A LOCAL branch of the RAF air cadets has been relaunched in Lerwick as air training returns to Shetland after an absence of four decades.

The detached flight will operate from Fort Charlotte with Davie Nicolson and Jan Hunter – both former RAF – running the unit.

It held a launch event on Monday and it opens officially at the end of March, with sessions due to be held once a week.

The air cadets scheme allows young people take part in a range of activities which can include gliding.


Kira Spofforth

A MANAGEMENT trainee with local company Brudolff Hotel Group has been awarded an industry scholarship with The Hospitality Trust Scotland.

Kira Spofforth will now be spending a couple of days at Gleneagles Hotel in Perthshire for workshops and training in the latest trends in customer experience as well as an overnight stay with dinner at the hotel to experience the exceptional high standards of the five-star hotel.

Spofforth joined Brudolff as a receptionist in May 2018 and was promoted to management trainee a year later. She has since worked at the Kveldsro House Hotel, The Lerwick Hotel, and is currently working at The Shetland Hotel.

Regional manager for Brudolff Hotels Group in Shetland, Marjory Barrie, said: “We need more people to consider hospitality as a career, and to do so we must offer our younger staff the opportunities to mix with others and enjoy the benefits of first class training.”


ROSEANNE Watt’s book of dialect poetry Moder Dy has been shortlisted for the 2019 Highland Book Prize.

Moder Dy is Watt’s first publication and it won the prestigeous Edwin Morgan Poetry award in 2018.

The other shortlisted books are Frayed Atlantic Edge, by David Gange, Surfacing, by Kathleen Jamie and Spring, by Ali Smith.

The award winner will be announced at the Ullapool Book festival in May.


SCOTTISH band Big Country are set to make a return visit north to Shetland in the summer.

The group will perform at Mareel on Saturday 18 July, with Forgotten Sons providing support at the Klub Revolution.

Big Country achieved big success in the 1980s with the singles Look Away, Fields of Fire and In A Big Country, as well as number one album with Steeltown from 1984.

Tickets are on sale now from the Shetland Box Office.