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Marine / From Toft to Lerwick for proposed net washing facility

The area where the facility is being proposed. Photo © Google 2020

THE COMPANY behind failed plans for an aquaculture net washing facility in Toft which provoked the ire of local residents is now looking to build the facility in the outer reaches of Lerwick.

SNG Aqua has applied for planning permission for a 9,565m2 site at the industrial area of Rova Head, which could form part of a “state of the art aquaculture hub”. It estimates the new facility would cost around £3 million.

Plans for a net washing facility at Toft were knocked back by planners in 2019, saying it was not appropriate for the location, with residents concerned over the industrialisation it would have brought to the area.

Instead, SNG Aqua – a subsidiary of Swan Net Gundry – has now pinpointed a site well away from housing near to the Gremista waste management facility.

The company said that there is a lack of capacity locally for net washing and maintenance, with a number of nets leaving Shetland to go south.

Some net services are already available in Shetland via the Scalloway based Mørenot Scotland, for instance.

SNG said that having equipment based in Shetland would result in nets not being contaminated while moving long distances.

Included in the new plans are drying and filtration buildings, and a processing area for cleaning nets.