GR Direct - Sony - Save up to £300 on selected Bravia OLED & LED TVs
Thursday 30 May 2024
 10.3°C   NNW Gentle Breeze
Ocean Kinetics - The Engineering Experts

Community / Moorfield staff thank community for ‘incredible generosity’ after fire

From left to right: James Milne and Mark Howard with in-house staff Rafael Pereira, Malin Roberts, Mark McNeill, Scott Arbuckle and Steve McDonnell.

STAFF at the Moorfield Hotel in Brae have thanked the local community for their “incredible generosity” following the devastating fire which destroyed the building earlier this week.

A handful of staff lived in the hotel and lost all of their possessions in the blaze, which spread through the building in the early hours of Monday morning.

Everyone inside at the time – around 70 staff and workers from the Shetland Gas Plant – was evacuated safely.

A clothes donation campaign for the staff and residents was soon launched by Cat Duncan, while James Milne – who worked as a chef at the hotel – also set up an online fundraiser.

The donations page has reached over £5,600 so far.

In a statement released on Thursday, the live-in staff of the hotel paid tribute to the support shown to the since the fire.

They praised porter Mark Howard, “whose actions on the night saved lives”.

He banged on residents’ doors and shouted to tell people to evacuate.

Showing some amount of dedication to his work, Howard then went to his other job at the Brae Co-op as usual later on Monday.

“If it were not for his quick thinking and his ability to relate to his training, the outcome of Sunday night’s events would have been a lot worse,” the staff said.

“We must thank all of the emergency services, everyone of them a true hero.”

The staff also thanked Cat Duncan, Katie Maggs and Diane Davis for their help throughout the day, “sorting clothes and running about after us all”.

“A special thank you to James Milne, from first thing on Monday morning, he started the GoFundMe, took us all to housing in Lerwick to get us a place to stay, he has not stopped. A true friend,” they added.

Become a supporter of Shetland News


“We can’t believe how many people all came together and the things people donated for us, money included, to help us get back in our feet.

“To Stuart McCaffer, one of the hotel owners, who has supported us, and is continuing to support us.

“The British Red Cross for their massive donation of clothing and toiletries.

“Ian Mills from the union Unite and Marion Johnson, for contributing huge amounts to the GoFundMe account.

“We are grateful for every single person who has donated, called, text, wishing us luck. We also thank the SIC housing for getting us a place to stay so quickly.”

Shetland News spoke to one of the live-in staff – food and beverage supervisor Malin Roberts – about her experience of losing her belongings in the fire.

The staff were already coming to terms with the Moorfield being set to close in early August with the loss of 45 jobs.

The decision was made after the hotel lost the contract to house gas plant workers.

The contract is moving to the nearby Sella Ness accommodation facility.

The Moorfield Hotel was opened in 2013 primarily to accommodate gas plant workers.

Become a supporter of Shetland News

Shetland News is asking its many readers to consider start paying for their dose of the latest local news delivered straight to their PC, tablet or mobile phone.

Journalism comes at a price and because that price is not being paid in today’s rapidly changing media world, most publishers - national and local - struggle financially despite very healthy audience figures.

Most online publishers have started charging for access to their websites, others have chosen a different route. Shetland News currently has  over 600 supporters  who are all making small voluntary financial contributions. All funds go towards covering our cost and improving the service further.

Your contribution will ensure Shetland News can: -

  • Bring you the headlines as they happen;
  • Stay editorially independent;
  • Give a voice to the community;
  • Grow site traffic further;
  • Research and publish more in-depth news, including more Shetland Lives features.

If you appreciate what we do and feel strongly about impartial local journalism, then please become a supporter of Shetland News by either making a single payment or monthly subscription.

Support us from as little as £3 per month – it only takes a minute to sign up. Thank you.



Subscribe to a selection of different newsletters from Shetland News, varying from breaking news delivered on the minute, to a weekly round-up of the opinion posts. All delivered straight to your inbox.

Daily Briefing Newsletter Weekly Highlights Newsletter Opinion Newsletter Life in Shetland Newsletter

JavaScript Required

We're sorry, but Shetland News isn't fully functional without JavaScript enabled.
Head over to the help page for instructions on how to enable JavaScript on your browser.

Your Privacy

We use cookies on our site to improve your experience.
By using our service, you agree to our Privacy Policy and Cookie Policy.

Browser is out-of-date

Shetland News isn't fully functional with this version of .
Head over to the help page for instructions on updating your browser for more security, improved speed and the best overall experience on this site.

Interested in Notifications?

Get notifications from Shetland News for important and breaking news.
You can unsubscribe at any time.

Become a supporter of Shetland News

We're committed to ensuring everyone has equitable access to impartial, open and quality local journalism that benefits all residents.

By supporting Shetland News, you play a vital role in ensuring we remain a pivotal resource in supporting the community.

Support us from as little as £3 per month – it only takes a minute to sign up. Thank you.