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Also in the news / Maggie skippers the Swan, Unst beach cleans, Viking grant scheme success, living well hub reopens

Photo: James Wood

MAGGIE Adamson has been confirmed as the skipper of sail training boat the Swan for 2022.

As well as extensive experience on the Swan, Maggie has sailed on vessels all over the world, and competed in many sailing competitions from dinghies to offshore yachts.

“Working and living on the Swan is a great way of life,” she said.

“It’s an adventure, the sailing is traditional and stripped back to the way it would have been, and you have time onboard to appreciate the wildlife and places around you.”

Tommy Allan, chair of the Swan Trust’s operations committee, said the charity was “absolutely delighted” to have Maggie – who first sailed on the boat in primary school – as skipper this year.

The Swan has a busy 2022 ahead, with public trips planned to St. Kilda and the Hebrides as well as local areas like Noss and Mousa.

A FURTHER 67 Covid cases have been confirmed in Shetland.

It comes after NHS Shetland said on Wednesday that some elderly people were in hospital with Covid.

THE CHIEF executive of Sullom Voe Terminal operator EnQuest says he is “excited” about new energy initiatives around the facility.

Amjad Bseisu said in an operational update that EnQuest’s “business is strongly positioned to play an important role in the energy transition”.

Diversifying what is on site at Sullom Voe features in plans to introduce cleaner energy to Shetland, with hydrogen production for instance one route suggested.

A SERIES of beach cleans is being organised in Unst over the coming weeks.

SaxaVord Spaceport is behind the initiative, which is kicking off in Norwick tomorrow (Friday).

Each beach clean will take place between 11am and midday, and plastic bags can be provided.

The full list is as follows:

  • Norwick          Friday 4 February
  • Skaw               Friday 4 March
  • Burrafirth        Friday 11 March
  • Easting            Friday 18 March
  • Norwick          Friday 25 March

THE FIRST year of the advance community benefit grant scheme distributing money from the Viking Energy wind farm has been hailed as a success.

Over 120 community groups have applied for nearly £300,000 from the Viking Community Fund, operated by Shetland Community Benefit Fund.

Recent schemes that have been approved include nearly £10,000 for improvements to the South Mainland Up-Helly-Aa galley shed, £5,000 for work on the Symbister Public Hall and a £10,000 grant for Fetlar Community Association’s new website.

But Shetland Community Benefit Fund chair Chris Bunyan reminded groups that funding was still to be allocated.

“There’s a number of areas with substantial funds waiting for groups to come forward with suitable projects,” he said.

“For example, Delting has already given out £51,000 in grants and still has £49,000 available for projects that qualify and are approved by the community council, and will have another £50,000 in September.”

THE LIVING Well Hub in Brae will reopen this Friday (4 February), offering a drop-in service and information on local health and social care support options.

Since first opening last November, the hub now also hosts regular group and professional visits.

Recent visitors have included staff from NHS Shetland and the council’s adult learning team, with more visits planned in the coming weeks from representatives of Voluntary Action Shetland, Mind Your Head and NHS health improvement.

Anyone interested in finding out more, or who has any specific questions, is invited to come along to the hub.

It is open Mondays and Fridays, between 10am and 2pm, and more information is available by calling 01595 744120 or emailing livingwellhub@shetland.gov.uk.