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Also in the news / Ferry terminal work, Ulsta shop plans, new trustees wanted, ‘Nort Natters’ and more …

Bressay ferry linkspan. Photo: SIC

CONTRACTORS working on behalf of the council will be carrying out essential maintenance on the Lerwick and Bressay ferry terminals this month.

Work on the linkspan control huts and related equipment will take place overnight on Tuesday 14 March in Lerwick, and Wednesday 15 March in Bressay.

To facilitate these works, which are weather dependent, on both nights the 10.45pm ferry service from Bressay and the 11pm service from Lerwick will not run.

The last service will depart from Lerwick at 10pm each night.

Works will continue for the following two to three weeks on equipment at both Lerwick and Bressay terminals but this will not impact on the ferry service.

PLANS have been lodged to turn the former Ulsta shop in Yell into a two-bedroom flat.

It comes after the shop, located next to the ferry terminal, closed in 2021. The property is also a listed building.

SHETLAND Charitable Trust (SCT) is looking for new trustees to help oversee its mission to improve the quality of life in Shetland.

Candidates with the right blend of vision and experience would join the board of 12 volunteers who award grants for community ventures and protect the trust’s £380 million reserves for future generations.

SCT spends over £10 million each year to support a wide range of services, including vital funding for around two dozen voluntary organisations.

Trust chair Dr Andrew Cooper said: “We have great breadth of experience around the table already but hearing new perspectives and different ideas is always beneficial and makes us stronger.”

Application packs for prospective trustees are available from the trust’s website or by contacting the office at 22-24 North Road, Lerwick, telephone 01595 744 994.

A REPORT on the recent community engagement project ‘Nort Natters’ has been published.

The project began in August to better understand how people who live, work and study in the North Mainland of Shetland experience the place where they live.

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But the report said there was some scepticism and uncertainty about the value of the work, particularly from people who have been affected by issues in areas like transport and housing for some time.

This has been shared by Shetland North councillor Tom Morton, who has criticised the consultant-led approach and said the results stated the obvious, while questioning that more than half of respondents were children and young people.

The availability of housing was a key factor which came through in the engagement process, as well as a lack of insulation.

Infrequent public transport and a lack of safe walking and cycling routes was also raised. Folk were also keen to have better leisure and socialising options.

SIC leader Emma Macdonald said the “initial work provides an opportunity for individuals, groups, communities and organisations in the north mainland and wider Shetland to use these insights to work together and improve local outcomes”.

ISLES MP Alistair Carmichael has welcomed news that a 57km interconnector subsea cable with a capacity of 220MW is set to be built between Orkney and a new substation at Dounreay.

Energy regulator Ofgem said it is minded to approve an application by SSEN Transmission, and has now launched a consultation.

The MP said: “This is a good day for the isles. The case for the Orkney transmission link was as plain as day as a benefit to both the isles and wider grid capacity and resilience. This is an opportunity to release and make use of excess energy capacity here.

“It has been a long hard slog to get to this point – and really should not have been as much of a struggle as it has proven.”

SSEN Transmission, which is also behind the ongoing Shetland interconnected project, said that all planning consents were in place for the point-to-point connection.

The company’s managing director Rob McDonald said the move was a “hugely significant milestone in finally unlocking Orkney’s vast renewable potential”.

Open Door map showing areas open for oil and gas exploration. Image: Faroes Energy Industry Group

THE NEW Faroese coalition government has confirmed that will continue its ‘open door’ policy for new oil and gas exploration in its sector to the west of Shetland.

This is in contrast to policies set by the two other members of the Danish Commonwealth, Denmark and Greenland, who have imposed a ban on any new exploration for fossil fuels.

Faroese minister for trade and industry Høgni Hoydal said the green energy transition would take the highest priority for the new administration.

And while there will be no new oil and gas licensing rounds, the Faroes will remain open for out of round bids. There is no windfall tax on energy company profits in the Faroes, he added.

Shetland’s neighbour to the northwest aims to be meeting all its electricity needs from renewable energy sources by 2030.

LEADING north-east charity Clan Cancer Support will kickstart its 40th anniversary celebrations with a birthday party themed ball in Aberdeen this September.

Clan will host the event at the Beach Ballroom on 30 September, with all proceeds going towards the provision of vital cancer support services for people affected by cancer in the north-east, Moray, Shetland and Orkney.

Tickets cost £100 per person and a limited number of tables of 10 are available at £1,000 each. VIP tables are also available.

For more information on the event contact


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