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Also in the news / Union approves HIAL deal, tide disrupts Whalsay service, strongman contest, athlete travel scheme and more

UNION members at Highlands and Islands Airports Limited (HIAL) have now voted to accept revised plans that retain their jobs air traffic control towers, including at Sumburgh.

The ballot closed today (Monday). The result is the conclusion of a successful campaign that represents a major win for workers, the Prospect union said.

HIAL chief executive Inglis Lyon said both the airport operator and the union have been working hard to achieve the compromise.

“There is much work to do and moving forward we will continue to work closely with our colleagues and seek their input to develop the necessary detail,” he said


FERRY services to and from Whalsay were suspended for a couple of hours on Monday morning due to wind and tide conditions on the route between Symbister and Vidlin.

The service stopped at 8.30am and resumed two hours later once the tide had turned.

Later in the day the service was reduced to a single vessel service only due to the adverse sea and tide conditions.


Colin Arthur ahead in the 115kg per hand farmer’s walk.

LOCAL strongman Colin Arthur gave a good performance at an event in Preston earlier this month – landing an invitation to a contest in Florida in the process.

Events included a 110kg axle press, a 250kg deadlift on a two inch axle, a sack loading medley up to a 120kg, 115kg per hand farmer’s walk and atlas stones.

Colin put in a consistent performance throughout the competition and completed his victory on the atlas stone.

This gained him an invite to the World’s Strongest Masters in Florida at the end of the year. His next competition will be the Scotland’s Strongest Man qualifier in April.


Roseanne Watt.

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SHETLAND poet Roseanne Watt is one of a number island writers taking part in StAnza, Scotland’s International Poetry Festival.

The hybrid festival will run from 7-13 March.

The festival, titled Stories Like Starting Points, is part of Scotland’s Year of Stories 2022, a year in which stories inspired by, created, or written in Scotland will be showcased and celebrated.


SHETLAND’s Athlete Travel Award Scheme has reopened for the first round of applications for 2022/23.

This year’s scheme will continue the flexible approach taken last year, with two rounds of applications due to the uncertainty caused by Covid-19.

Applications for round one will close on 9 March.  Round two applications will open in September for programmes beginning from October 2022.

Up to £750 will be awarded per athlete based on their training and competition schedule and this will be the same for the second round later in the year.

Successful and unsuccessful athletes in round one will be able to reapply in round two.


SCOTTISH salmon exports from Shetland totalled £130 million last year, directly supporting 470 local jobs.

New data published by the UK Government has demonstrated the strong global demand for Scotland’s farm-raised salmon, which is the UK’s biggest food export.

For the first time, a regional breakdown of the annual figures by trade body Salmon Scotland shows that 19,900 tonnes were exported from Shetland in 2021, representing 20 per cent of the Scotland-wide share.

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