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Election / North Isles by-election date confirmed

Photo: Chris Cope/Shetland News

SHETLAND should have a new councillor on 5 August following a by-election for the North Isles ward.

A notice of the by-election is expected to be published soon, and the vote itself will be held on 4 August. The results will then be declared the day after.

The by-election is taking place because only two candidates – the incumbents Duncan Anderson and Ryan Thomson – came forward for the ward’s three seats in May’s local government election.

It joined Shetland North, which had just enough candidates, as the election’s two uncontested wards.

Thomson said he had enquired with Shetland Islands Council’s legal team about having the count in the North Isles, but this is not possible due to technical difficulties and equipment.

Both councillors say anyone interested in standing is welcome to ask them for advice. There is, however, already one name in the running.

Marie Williamson, who grew up in Whalsay, narrowly missed out in a Lerwick ward in May’s elections.

But she has already signalled her intent to try again, this time standing in the North Isles by-election.

The ward covers Unst, Yell, Fetlar, Whalsay and Skerries.

It is seen as a particularly important council term for the North Isles due to the push for progress on fixed links, while a spaceport in set to be developed in Unst too.