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Also in the news / Malakoff sponsors Tall Ships, inflation running rampant, knitting co-ordinator sought and more…

Marking Malakoff’s contribution to the Tall Ships event are: back (left to right) Ryan Stevenson and Ewen Hutcheson; and front (left to right) Leah Cumming, Jessie Szego with Emma Miller of Shetland Tall Ships Ltd. Photo: Lakota Clubb.

LOCAL engineering firm Malakoff has joined the ever-growing list of sponsors for next summer’s Tall Ships event in Lerwick.

The company will provide health and safety services and environmental management for the four-day event on an “in-kind” basis as one of the Lerwick host port associates.

Emma Miller of organisers Shetland Tall Ships Ltd said she was “really pleased that we have another well established and highly respected local firm overseeing this very important element of the event”.

Malakoff contracts manager Ryan Stevenson said it offered a training opportunity for younger staff to work alongside the company’s established HSQE team and be supported in the process of carrying out the extensive risk assessments and checks required for an event of this size.

The Tall Ships is expected to attract up to 10,000 people per day and, in addition to the ships’ visit, there will be a packed programme of events including concerts and family fun days.

RESPONDING to news that the UK inflation rate has now passed the 10 per cent mark, isles MP Alistair Carmichael has once again called on the UK Government for a “more serious response” to the cost-of-living crisis.

Northern Isles MP Alistair Carmichael. Photo: Shetland News

It comes as average salaries have fallen by three per cent in real terms.

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“With inflation running rampant the most important thing is that we protect those who are most vulnerable to price rises, and that we tackle the most critical cost-of-living issues before they strike,” Carmichael said.

“We know too well now that the worst of inflation is hitting poorer households. Boris Johnson once boasted that he knew the price of champagne, but it is the basics of bread, milk and eggs which are driving costs for families.

“They deserve support and some faith that their government understands and will act on their needs. That does not mean tax cuts for those at the upper end as the Conservative candidates seem to think – it means keeping money in the pockets of struggling people by reducing their bills.”

A DONATION of more than £2,000 from Oregon-based Heritage Spinning and Weaving group and from other local business contributions have been welcomed by the ShetlandPeerieMakkers programme, which provides hand-knitting lessons for children in primary schools.

Pierre Cambilliard. Photo: Shetland News

Chairperson Pierre Cambillard said all donations and other high-level support will help to secure the programme in the years ahead.

“Volunteer tutors have come forward from the local community and the response from both businesses and private donors has been really heartening.  The programme’s success is now recognised, and expectations are high,” he said.

However the programme requires a new co-ordinator.

“Tracey Hawkins has done an outstanding job but unfortunately her other commitments mean that she won’t be able to devote time to this role in future,” Cambilliard said.

“The post is currently being advertised on a consultancy basis and we’re now inviting tenders, with a closing date of 31 August.”

NORTHMAVINE Community Development Company is hosting its first ever local produce show in the Hillswick Hall on 28 August.

Entry forms can be picked from the Hillswick and Ollaberry shops, the NCDC office or online.

The show is open between 2pm and 5pm. There will be Sunday teas and lots of entertainment including cut flower classes, home bakes and preserves classes.

SHETLAND artist Peter Davis is currently showing a large number of paintings in the Birch Tree Gallery as part of the Edinburgh Festival.

Ascending Light is his third solo show in this gallery and contains watercolours completed over the last few years since his move further and deeper into Shetland’s Westside.

“I had originally considered calling this exhibition One Square Mile to reflect the small area of subject matter that initially inspired the paintings,” Davies said in the accompanying catalogue.

“I live in the relatively isolated community of Silwick, a community now of two, though well inhabited in the distant past. Moving here had a profound effect on my work probably due to the proximity to cliffs and a coastline in battle with the wild Atlantic.”

The exhibition can be seen at the Birch Tree Gallery at 23A Dundas Street, Edinburgh, until 27August. His work is also available to view on the gallery website.

COMMUNITIES across Scotland are being urged to apply for a slice of £350,000 of funding available from Crown Estate Scotland’s sustainable communities fund.

The fund consists of two grant programmes:

Community capacity grants offer funding of between £20,000 and £50,000 for projects that will contribute to local regeneration and sustainable development.

Meanwhile environment grants of between £5,000 and £20,000 are available for projects which can deliver demonstrable environmental benefits within 18 months of an award being made.

Head of policy for Crown Estate Scotland Annie Breaden said: “Applying to the fund is easy, and the grants available can provide the financial backing to turn aspirations and great ideas into reality.”

Full details on the application process and how grants will be allocated can be found here.

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