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Community / Wool week to return in scaled-back format

Photo: Shetland Amenity Trust

SHETLAND Wool Week is set to go ahead in person this September after two years of hosting online events due to the Covid pandemic.

The festival will take place between 24 September and 2 October 2022.

However it will be a scaled back version of the usual physical event, with the organisers focusing on delivering Shetland Wool Week in full for 2023.

Assistant chief executive of organiser Shetland Amenity Trust, Sandy Middleton, said: “After much deliberation with the SWW committee we are thrilled to announce that we will be going ahead with a physical event this year, albeit in a reduced format.

“For the past two years we have run a virtual Wool Week, but this year, with Covid restrictions lifting around the world, we wanted to take our first steps towards bringing a physical event back and celebrate Shetland’s textiles and wool with a series of events throughout the isles.

“However, with the ongoing uncertainty of new Covid variants, and ever-mindful of our small island community, our programme will be reduced in size from previous years with fewer of the larger, public gatherings.”

Shetland Wool Week organisers are currently pulling together the programme for 2022 which will be launched during the summer.

Local tutors and event providers have been contacted and organisers are urging anyone who would like to host a wool-related event in person to get in touch via email at woolweek@shetlandamenity.org.

Middleton added: “This is an ideal opportunity for locals to attend SWW as we anticipate fewer visitors from overseas joining us this year. Additionally, we will shortly be recruiting for someone to join the SWW team to help deliver the event and develop the festival for 2023.”

A wool week patron has been chosen for 2022 and this will be announced together with the new hat pattern around May.

Current patron Wilma Malcolmson has done a “sterling job, flying the flag for Shetland wool for the past two years”, and the organisers wish to thank her for all her dedication and hard work, as well as for creating two stunning hat patterns, Katie’s Kep and Da Crofter’s Kep.

The popular Shetland Wool Week annual is also planned for later in the year.

Meanwhile the amenity trust’s Crofthouse Museum is due to open for the first time since before the pandemic in May.