THE SHETLAND Museum and Archives has closed until further notice due to the spread of coronavirus.
Shetland Amenity Trust events such as Da Voar Redd Up, the Nature Festival and Shetland Boat Week are also all under review due to the virus.
The trust, however, is still hoping to run Shetland Wool Week in late September and early October.
Da Voar Redd Up is due to take place at the end of April, with the Nature Festival set for July and Boat Week scheduled for August.
In addition to the museum which it operates, the amenity trust’s head office at Garthspool is now closed to the public following the latest guidance from the UK government issued on Monday.
The upcoming seasonal opening of the trust’s other sites at Sumburgh Head, the Crofthouse Museum, and Old Scatness Broch and Iron Age Village are also under review.
Next week’s Wool Week launch event at the Shetland Museum and Archives has also been cancelled.
The trust planned to announce the Wool Week patron and launch the hat pattern for 2020 at the event, with staff now working on an alternative ‘virtual’ launch.
Trust staff are being supported to work from home in the interim, whilst ensuring that buildings and sites continue to be cared for and essential duties and functions are performed.
Shetland Amenity Trust chief executive Mat Roberts said: “This has been an incredibly difficult decision in incredibly difficult circumstances. The advice and approach have been changing rapidly and we have been working hard in recent weeks to prepare for any eventuality.
“Closing our sites and possibly cancelling events will have significant implications for the local community, the local visitor economy and the trust itself. The financial consequences, in particular, should not be underestimated.
“Our priority, however, must be to protect the public and our staff, in line with government efforts to manage this global pandemic.”
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