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History / Town centre building with ‘iconic’ boot sign goes on market

Photo: Anderson Strathern

A BUILDING featuring something of a Lerwick landmark on its exterior has gone up for sale.

The Garret building, which has the well-known ‘K’ boot sign on its sea-facing end, has an asking price of offers in the region of £225,000.

The building, a stone’s throw away from the Market Cross, has three floors and most recently housed the Phu Siam restaurant and takeaway at the bottom.

In past years it also hosted the Garret shop upstairs.

But its history stems back to being a boot and shoemaker’s in the early 20th century.

Mark Smith from Shetland Museum and Archives said that according to the late Douglas Sinclair’s book Old Lerwick: Lanes and Lodberries, the big boot was painted after the building was acquired by Goodlad & Coutts, a boot and shoemaker, in 1902.

“It was prompted by a brand of shoes the shop stocked (K-brand, they were called), and the artist was James Magnus Smith, a house painter and decorator who lived in Fort Road,” he said.

Archivist Brian Smith added that Sinclair also said it was a guide for vessels making a direct approach when berthing at the south side of Victoria Pier, and was used as an aid in adjusting compasses.

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