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Also in the news / Junior jarl applications open, Tunnel Vision and more…

2023's junior jarl squad at Victoria Pier. Photo: Junior UHA

THE PROCESS of choosing the Junior Up Helly Aa jarl for 2024 begins today (Wednesday).

Applications are now open for anyone in secondary two at the Anderson High School.

Forms can be requested by emailing or through social media.

Yesterday saw the final official duties of 2023 junior Jarl James Morrison (Audunn Thorolfsson) and his squad.

They welcomed visitors to Lerwick Harbour, as it was cruise ship Costa Favolosa’s maiden call to Shetland.

It has been a busy summer for the 2023 squad, attending eight cruise ship maiden calls as well as the Midsummer Carnival, the Scalloway viking procession and the Tall Ships.

IT IS not long until Tunnel Vision events will return to Shetland’s island communities.

The events will be held in Yell, Fetlar, Unst, Whalsay and Bressay next week and hosted by MP Alistair Carmichael and MSP Beatrice Wishart.

Similar events were held last year, and the isles have since seen the formation of tunnel action groups.

Local Lib Dem politicians Beatrice Wishart MSP and Alistair Carmichael MP. Photos: Shetland News

Carmichael said that since the last round of events “there has been a growing sense of momentum around the campaign for tunnels in the isles”.

Wishart has also visited Faroe to learn about successful tunnels there.

“My recent trip to the Faroe Islands highlighted the political will with ‘buy-in’ from residents, businesses and government to connect islands with tunnels,” she said.

“The development of tunnels in the Faroe Islands has brought about transformational change, reversed population decline and slashed travel times.

“I look forward to hearing at the meetings about the work of the Tunnel Action Groups, as well as the views of local residents and councillors, and how we can make progress to bring about long-term infrastructure improvements.”

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HIGHLANDS and Islands MSP Jamie Halcro Johnston says that “the devil will be in the detail” of the Scottish Government’s latest proposals to track fishing vessels.

On Monday, the government announced a consultation on implementing electronic monitoring systems for vessels under 12 metres.

Highlands and Islands Conservative Jamie Halcro Johnston.

Halcro Johnson now says the government must fully engage with local fishermen.

“The devil will be in the detail of these latest proposals from the SNP-Green government for our fishing industry,” he said.

“Ministers must learn from their shambolic approach in relation to their plans for Highly Protected Marine Areas when they completely failed to listen to those whose livelihoods would be affected.

“They must fully engage with our fishermen – who are already under huge pressure – to ensure that they can thrive going forward, rather than continuing to worry about ministerial interference.”

SHETLAND Citizens Advice Bureau will have its annual general meeting on 20 September.

It will start at 7pm in the conference room at Market House in Lerwick.

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