Business / Isles named UK’s Black Friday online shopping hotspot for second year in a row

SHETLAND has again been named the UK’s ‘hotspot’ for Black Friday online purchases – despite a local campaign urging people to reject consumerism and ‘Dunna Buy Bruck’.

Replicating last year, Shetland came out top in a Royal Mail list of areas where shoppers made the most online purchases over the course of the Black Friday weekend.

Black Friday, once a recent American tradition, is largely regarded as the first day of the Christmas shopping season and it sees retailers offer discounts. This year it fell on 26 November.

Second on the list was Kirkwall in Orkney, while the Hebrides and Central London followed.

But it comes after local environmental campaigners last week encouraged Shetland people to think twice about indulging in what they described as a “totally manufactured festival of consumerism foisted upon us by corporations”.

Shetland Greens encouraged people to buy local instead of going online.

Shetland Green Party co-coordinator Debra Nicolson had described Dunna Buy Bruck as a cross-party campaign that aims to move towards a circular economy.

Responding to Shetland coming top of the list, fellow Green activist Alex Armitage said: “The fact that Shetland has come top of the list for Black Friday deliveries for two years running now is probably due to the fact that we have a culture of looking out for one another and part of that means giving gifts to family and friends at Christmas.

“Increased levels of wealth means that many Shetlanders more able to do that compared with other parts of the UK. In recent years, big companies have hijacked our sense of goodwill at Christmas to encourage us to buy more stuff, often things that people don’t need.

“This consumption culture is one of the things that is driving climate breakdown and needs to change.

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“There are so many ways to show people we love them without having to buy them physical things. Some of the best Christmas presents are gifts of time doing a favourite activity, a romantic weekend away or day out.”

Loganair operates planes which take Royal Mail deliveries to Shetland, and its chief operating officer Maurice Boyle said: “We are delivering more packages than ever before to the Highlands and Islands, and in turn, our larger ATR72 aircraft has been operating Shetland’s daily mail run in November and December to meet demand.

“We are extremely proud to keep shoppers in the most remote communities across the UK connected as they prepare for Christmas.”

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