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Guest Mr.Brown

That the islands people of all ages would have the options afforded to us on the mainland as far as being able to attend night classes, social events etc. without having an over night stay if there was a fixed link is of course true. However on a very cold (not unusual for us), dark winters night when you have been working all day, would you rather get home to whichever island & then attend a night class locally which would most likely be no more than a 15 minute drive away from your house or would you want to drive down to (probably) the town which would I would think certainly take at least an hour at the speed limit, attend your class, drive back & probably not get in your house before 10pm (assuming classes are 7-9pm), at the earliest but quite possibly later depending on which island & whereabouts on it you live. That last scenario would be if your employment was on your home island or at the north of the mainland. If you were already in the town because of work or shopping you would most likely not go home between work & your class because of the time constraint & the fuel cost. That would feel like a really long day! Obviously some may be glad to do all this driving in maybe not the best weather conditions but I do wonder how popular it would be on a regular basis? As far as social events, if they involve alcohol then you will either have to stop at one drink so as not to be over the legal limit. Is that likely if you are socialising all evening, especially at the weekend. You could have a designated driver but they are not always easy to find! Hireing a taxi is another option but even a shared hire would be quite cost prohibitive for many for that distance, presuming you can get a taxi. For the younger folk in particular I think that these options are less likely to work out in practice. I suspect if they already crash on a toonie friends couch they will continue to choose this option, after all there maybe after pub/club parties to go to! I would be genuinely interested to hear views from the northern isles, maybe I will be proved totally wrong.

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There's two games at play with Holyrood, firstly, regardless of their protestations and overtures to the contrary, the Scottish establishment do not, never have, and probably never will in the next fe

Ferry service for north isles is a joke today yes it's windy but can't get off north isles to get to slmg final sale of the year I am disappointed to say the least. It's another reason fixed links nee

Yep, and that could be expanded to "Let's empty all the islands around Scotland AND the Highlands, and centralise everyone to the central belt and make Glasgow and Edinburgh contiguous because it'll s

 

 

 

Isle people go for fixed links and future Islands develop and young generation have reasons for them to stay on island not move to Lerwick or south looking for work or study

Just out of interest, how many ex-isle residents have you spoken to to come to that conclusion?

 

I think most young leavers will tell you that they leave to go to university/college and/or that they want to live in or near cities/towns. Why? Because it’s a more appealing lifestyle with more educational, career or social opportunities for them.

 

How are fixed links going to change that?

Fixed links will give everybody, young and old, access to both mainland and the other isles 24/7, unlike what is inflicted upon us now. Perhaps that will offer a little more to the youths that want to go on to further education or want decent access to a social environment, instead of only having access to the rest of the world during the hours provided.

*If* the young folk who left just moved to Lerwick and *if* the primary reason for doing that was because of the cost/hassle of having to use a ferry to get to/from the isles every day then I might be inclined to agree with you.

 

For a lot of young folk though, it’s a lifestyle choice. When they get to a certain age, life in rural areas just doesn’t appeal to them anymore. They want to be right in towns/cities to experience the opportunities they offer, not just to have 24/7 access to them by road.

 

I’m saying all of this as an ex-isles/ex-young person myself. My choice to leave had nothing to do with the transport situation. I’m not saying that’s necessarily the case for everybody but I very much doubt my experience is unique either.

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As far as social events, if they involve alcohol then you will either have to stop at one drink so as not to be over the legal limit. Is that likely if you are socialising all evening, especially at the weekend. You could have a designated driver but they are not always easy to find! Hireing a taxi is another option but even a shared hire would be quite cost prohibitive for many for that distance, presuming you can get a taxi. For the younger folk in particular I think that these options are less likely to work out in practice. I suspect if they already crash on a toonie friends couch they will continue to choose this option, after all there maybe after pub/club parties to go to! I would be genuinely interested to hear views from the northern isles, maybe I will be proved totally wrong.

I suspect you’re right. It’d be almost the furthest extreme but a trip from Lerwick to Baltasound through two tunnels would still probably take around an hour.

 

Even in a taxi, it’s probably not the length of trip anybody anywhere would want to take two ways/at 3 in the morning after a night on the sauce.

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Isle people go for fixed links and future Islands develop and young generation have reasons for them to stay on island not move to Lerwick or south looking for work or study

Just out of interest, how many ex-isle residents have you spoken to to come to that conclusion?

 

I think most young leavers will tell you that they leave to go to university/college and/or that they want to live in or near cities/towns. Why? Because it’s a more appealing lifestyle with more educational, career or social opportunities for them.

 

How are fixed links going to change that?

Fixed links will give everybody, young and old, access to both mainland and the other isles 24/7, unlike what is inflicted upon us now. Perhaps that will offer a little more to the youths that want to go on to further education or want decent access to a social environment, instead of only having access to the rest of the world during the hours provided.

*If* the young folk who left just moved to Lerwick and *if* the primary reason for doing that was because of the cost/hassle of having to use a ferry to get to/from the isles every day then I might be inclined to agree with you.

 

For a lot of young folk though, it’s a lifestyle choice. When they get to a certain age, life in rural areas just doesn’t appeal to them anymore. They want to be right in towns/cities to experience the opportunities they offer, not just to have 24/7 access to them by road.

 

I’m saying all of this as an ex-isles/ex-young person myself. My choice to leave had nothing to do with the transport situation. I’m not saying that’s necessarily the case for everybody but I very much doubt my experience is unique either.

 

 

Unfortunately, it's not just the youth that need access to the mainland or the rest of the isles outwith the hours that the ferries run. The entire population find themselves in the position where they need to move from one place to another, at a time that the ferry isn't running. If nothing is done to solve that then the only people that will ever benefit in any way will remain the same. The ferry crews will benefit. Not you. Not me. Nobody that needs immediate access to the hospital, or needs to assist their family who are on another island.

 

Obviously, the only people that should be looked after, in any way at all are the ferry crews. Nobody else is worth considering. Be happy.

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Hi George

 

I Agree some your points but future of Islands depend on people  and Numbers  If they keep falling or not going up Government will stop Giving more monies on ferries service  it go to few ferries per day, and only way to get numbers  up and  family’s to stay on islands give conditions work places good transport links, but I am seeing that Sic try to centralize  things that people are encouragement to move to lerwick  Rural areas will slowly come fewer over time,  Anderson High school is great 50 plus Million  Costs  for prefab building 25-max 30 years live span ,but same time they closed small schools, in rural areas, that’s how communities survive is by having schools post offices shops,

 

 

when they close means village life is slowly stopping

 

 

I sorry to say Rural Villages to me is very important in any country if their good means Government are good if there slow down means special program to cut them   and centralization to town   and they  don’t want rural developments or  work places or housing in that areas. this reality and Budgets go to Lerwick areas more for them . this Wrong in My books, Budgets are for all Shetlands, to develop Time people opened there eyes see this situation,even unst Airport could operate flight 1- 2 times per week to Aberdeen save people going all way south end  by way  weres marketing of transport  to get people in out isles millions  go to  budget to zetrans what they  do hire in counsultants  give big fees, communites can give same advice even better there needs free of charge  

 

 this airport  is on hold by some people  give it to airline operate service Get it working,such airlines operate all over world small airports List goes on Old saying if you depend on a fool represent you whats results end of day?? Zero thats why isles are 10 years behind    sorry to say about my homeland 

 

 

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Hi George

 

I Agree some your points but future of Islands depend on people  and Numbers  If they keep falling or not going up Government will stop Giving more monies on ferries service  it go to few ferries per day, and only way to get numbers  up and  family’s to stay on islands give conditions work places good transport links, but I am seeing that Sic try to centralize  things that people are encouragement to move to lerwick  Rural areas will slowly come fewer over time,  Anderson High school is great 50 plus Million  Costs  for prefab building 25-max 30 years live span ,but same time they closed small schools, in rural areas, that’s how communities survive is by having schools post offices shops,

 

 

when they close means village life is slowly stopping

 

 

I sorry to say Rural Villages to me is very important in any country if their good means Government are good if there slow down means special program to cut them   and centralization to town   and they  don’t want rural developments or  work places or housing in that areas. this reality and Budgets go to Lerwick areas more for them . this Wrong in My books, Budgets are for all Shetlands, to develop Time people opened there eyes see this situation,even unst Airport could operate flight 1- 2 times per week to Aberdeen save people going all way south end  by way  weres marketing of transport  to get people in out isles millions  go to  budget to zetrans what they  do hire in counsultants  give big fees, communites can give same advice even better there needs free of charge  

 

 

 this airport  is on hold by some people  give it to airline operate service Get it working,such airlines operate all over world small airports List goes on Old saying if you depend on a fool represent you whats results end of day?? Zero thats why isles are 10 years behind    sorry to say about my homeland 

 

 

 

 

An awful lot needs to be done for the islands, Boby. 24/7 crossing times needs to be available to them or everybody that lives there now will soon find a reason to move out, and they will move out. Where they'll move to will be up to them but it will be detrimental to the islands, and what is detrimental to the islands will rub off over the whole of Shetland. How will the people that have worked against bridges and tunnels justify the damage that they will be shown to have inflicted upon the whole of Shetland.

 

Apart from that, ferry services are restrictive to business on the isles. Outwith the times that the ferries run, there is no way for people to travel to or from the islands. That deters people from enjoying the many events that take place all over Shetland as only the locals can have no worries about travel times. Only people with no medical problems that can, and will, require hospital treatment can have no worries about ferry times. It also keeps the folk that live out on the isles from enjoying the vast majority of what there is to see all over the rest of Shetland because they are trapped at home. It affects everybody. It is detrimental to everybody. It is destructive to the whole of Shetland. No tunnels and no bridges will end up meaning no Shetland worth going to. After all, nobody else will be there. Anybody visiting will get lonely.

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Guest Mr.Brown

I do realise that there may be reasons other than the ones I have discussed, for accessing the "islands". My points were intended to highlight just some of the issues. A couple more things that I believe may be relevant are firstly that the bridge option could still be fraught with problems as winds over a certain strength could mean closure. Also I would have thought that when an ambulance is required that by the time it has got from Lerwick to Toft that there has been time to have the ferry in place whatever time of day or night it is? If the situation is seconds critical shouldn't an air ambulance be involved? I am fully aware this is very expensive but "what price life?"

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Mr Brown

I agree bridge idea not so good as many days of year it be closed due wind speeds thats why tunnels not depend on weather to cross, materials from tunnel can be used in road construction through isles, these tunnels take min 2 years to build each one  and would employe alot of people in area  during  build 

this day of age not bad thing, new business would start in area as not so remote,but 10 years plan must be done on this to get people to area to invest, in projects

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Guest Mr.Brown

I am really for business thriving in all geographical areas but the less central & therefore further away from most of the population, then the less passing trade is to be had. A business would need to have some unique quality about it to get people making a special trip to it from a distance. Ofcourse they could trade over the internet but then whether there is a fixed link or not would not be relevant. It is a shame that we do not value smaller communities for what they are, generally quieter, safer (for both people & property) places that do not have the "excitement" & variety of a town or city but they do have the tranquility & feeling of security that some people do thrive in. It's horses for courses. I am on the mainland (a country area) so am not limited by a ferry timetable, however as a non driver I am sometimes limited by lack of affordable transport to the town. But this is my choice as I would rather live in the country even though there are less facilities than in the town. When I was younger I didn't always feel that way & did live in the town for a while & also went south & enjoyed city life for a while. It is not uncommon for folk to go through a period in their lives usually at a younger age, of wanting change & new experiences & there will always be a number of folk who won't want to come back to the quieter life. Take note of "Shetlanders" post yesterday (24th) at 10.37am (sorry haven't figured out the technical bit of how to insert this here!) The best we can all do is to support our local businesses such as shops, post offices etc. as much as possible, I am on a very limited income so I do appreciate this is not always easy. Also doing what we can to keep our local schools open. It's these sorts of facilities that make a place a community instead of just a commuter area for the town. I wouldn't have thought that there is a high demand for people from the mainland to travel to & from the isles after ferries have quit running for the day though I am not exactly sure what time that is, can anyone enlighten me please? For all these reasons I am not yet convinced that a fixed link is a priority but as I have said in a previous post if the majority of the isles people want it then fair enough, their lives will be affected by it far more than the rest of us. Speak up Unst, Yell Fetlar & Whalsay!

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Guest Mr.Brown

Thanks for that George. I have just had a look & the last scheduled ferry runs from Toft & Gutcher are comparable to bus timetables for at least some areas. There seems to be an option for one more later ferry run (from each side) if there is a booking made before the closing time of the office. They don't seem to need a minimum number of bookings for this. To be honest when it came to working out the other timetables to Fetlar & Unst I got totally confused! I guess if you are using them regularly you soon learn when they are. Do you really think there are so many isles folk that would be in the sort of employment where they could be called out to the mainland in the middle of the night? Even if there was a fixed link right now would you want to be travelling even from the south end of Yell down to the town. I give you that if it is someone that is employed at Sullom Voe then maybe. I don't know if there are jobs there where you need to be "on call", if there is somebody in this situation I hope they join in the conversation. I would think a regular night shift would fit in with the ferry times though.

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 I give you that if it is someone that is employed at Sullom Voe then maybe. I don't know if there are jobs there where you need to be "on call", if there is somebody in this situation I hope they join in the conversation. I would think a regular night shift would fit in with the ferry times though.

 

I can think of one person off hand that has a house in Yell, works at Sullom and is regularly on call. I don't know how they deal with the problem when, and if, it has ever occurred but calling the ferry out to allow them access to Sullom will take a lot longer than driving across a bridge or through a tunnel. The use of a bridge or tunnel means that only one person is involved in response to the call-out, as opposed to the skipper and his crew that also have to turn out to sail the ferry. For all we know, there may well be people that do similar jobs that live further afield. If they are in Unst, two ferries, and therefore two crews, will have be called out and the extra time that is involved has to be dealt with. By who, and at what cost, I dread to think. Regardless, it's you, me and the people around us that have to pick up the tab.

 

I am also stunned that Iceland, Faroe and Norway have built so many tunnels and bridges to allow their people access across their land, twenty-four hours a day, every single day of the year. They enjoy a very similar weather to us but they haven't used it as an excuse to keep the few ferry skippers and their crews in a job, as Shetland seems to have.

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Guest Mr.Brown

Fair points George but I think it would have to be a tunnel if it ever happens because as I mentioned in an earlier post, high winds can cause closure of bridges. If you find out how that Yell man deals with the on call situation post it (if he doesn't mind). It would be interesting to hear.

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I agree, Mr.B. Tunnels would probably be better but cannot always be considered, therefore bridges are the next option. Neither tunnels nor bridges need to open and shut according to the timetable The S.I.C spent a long time investigating how they could put a tunnel across from Lerwick to Bressay, and there was an S.I.C information bulletin about it. Not much use to the people up north but very nice for themselves. Pity they don't appear to be considering doing what needs to be done.

Edited by George.
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Guest Mr.Brown

Another related issue did occur to me. Speaking of jobs that would go, the ferry folk have already been mentioned! I think that the council would see it as an opertunity to try to close the secondary schools, probably using the excuse of combining them with Brae high school. If they succeeded in that not only would there be teachers jobs gone & I doubt if they could all be absorbed by Brae, but there would be all the class room assistants (there are some even in secondary schools). Also the canteen staff, school cleaners & janitors jobs x 2 schools. I really don't think this is far fetched, I've heard one of our local councillors saying if he had his way he would shut them all (except for Lerwick)! A lot of people choose these sorts of jobs because they are local & they fit in with family commitments like maybe having younger children in the local primary. I would never be in favour of closing any of our schools, I think our children are deserving of having some choice (smaller or larger school). Not all kids thrive in the same environment, my own & my now grown child's experience has me totally convinced of that. I firmly believe we should consider all our schools as an investment in Shetland's future & not just a tax payers burden. So sorry George, I'm still on the side of feeling that a fixed link could do more irreversible harm than good!

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