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Letters / Relocating housing projects to rural Shetland

Regarding fears of depopulation and economic decline in the North Mainland, some of this has been and is inevitable given post peak-oil and gas. Things change.

Good to see local entrepreneurs looking to build private housing – clearly a need. Hope they are not ‘second homes’.

Housing planned for Moorfield Hotel site

Simply stop building houses in Lerwick and within the Sandwick, Scalloway, Weisdale, Lerwick ‘golden(?) quadrangle’ and focus and priorities economic development in most rural of areas.

Nice ‘pitch’ by cllr Manson and former cllr Cooper (thought he’d retired?) pre the new council meeting.

Houses planned for Knab and Stanley Hill should be relocated, with appropriate services: education, health and local economic development companies to rural areas. It is not rocket science – spaceport excepted!

I was shocked on a recent visit to learn of Unst population depletion from over a 1,000 to 650 in 10-15 years.

Not even Lockheed Martin and the entire US industrial military complex will replace the former RAF Saxa Vord employment.

If the council had shown foresight and invested in the late Sandy Macaulay’s wind and hydrogen scheme, 20+ years ahead of its time, perhaps Unst would not have lost so many of its brightest and best to Lerwick or da Sooth End, or elsewhere.

I wonder how many homes in Unst are now second homes for Airbnb, be it local or absentee landlords? The brewery is another great miss too.

James Paton
Lerwick