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  1. trout

    Seafarers..

    There's been a few fekin stupid things said on here through the ages but, that really is at the top. Thread closed as it's a pointless dirge. Anyone got any issues with that email oohbutiliktaetrütle@shetlink.com and it'll be promptly ignored.
    12 points
  2. ghufar

    glasshouse plans

    For clarity you wanted a response and here it is. Just because I own the greenhouses doesn't mean it has ANYTHING to do with my shop business which BTW has supported this community for over 40 years and pumped back into the local economy many millions in salaries and services as well as assisting many local charities with both funds and raffle prizes. Threats of disrupting the business due to a separate personal issue can only lead to a domino effect. Islesat (as owners of a local business) should realise that I wouldn't stop using their business if he asked more for his house than I felt it was worth because I wanted to use it for a "community project". Have some sense people - this letter just reeks of cutting off your noses to spite your face. I originally purchased the greenhouse which had not been used for many years due to lack of commercial viabilty with the hope of building eco-friendly housing or even having the option of rebuilding a commercial building to house my furniture and floorcoverings departments if I wanted. David Adamsons have clearly stated that they had no other property to compare the value to and have come back with a figure a third of what I believe I can achieve if I continue down one of my original desired routes in the future. However as I was approached with a community project I was more than willing to just take what it has almost cost me taking into account interest, original price and other costs over the last 5 years. This is not as one commentator states "twice the asking price" and trust him to make it clear that despite having made this my home for over 45 years I'm "an incomer" so that's another reason for my "apparent greed". As Kavi says the figures of the project without even the purchase price were mind blowing and unfortunately I fear there could have been a swimming pools/mareel saga had it gone ahead anyway. Having said all this I can say that I am saddened that we could not reach a satisfactory resolution. Hope that some of you can now see things from both sides of the fence...
    11 points
  3. Thanks everyone. I am free(ish) now.
    11 points
  4. Scorrie

    Nice girl

    I know a single young lady who loves going for walks on deserted beaches, I'l give her a shout for you if that's OK. Just bring a ball for her to chase and you'll get on fine.....
    10 points
  5. ^ AFAIK thats pretty much a matter between the person wanting to join, the existing members of the squad they want to join, and the leader of that squad. The UHA Committee, last I was aware anyway, has minimal interference in individual squad affairs, beyond the general 'don't disrupt the event and/or bring it in to disrepute' type of stuff, and the residency qualifications that were/are for anybody taking part in the event, when it became necessary to cap total numbers back in the 70's. In its basest terms, as I understand it. The event is one person's private party (the Jarl), who is joined by other private partys (the other squads), in an all night merry go round of visiting yet more private partys (the venues). Its all harking back to its roots of small groups of people with a common interest (neighbours, workmates etc) informally getting together to visit dwellings throughout the town where the housholder was holding open house, and carrying brands or dragging burning barrels to provide light for themselves, with the same rules applying now as then. If you weren't part of whatever 'clique' that formed those informal groupings back at it start, you'd not been invited to join them, you'd either have had to find a 'clique' in to which you were accepted, or be left on the outside. In today's incarnation, folk generally join squads which aready have relatives, workmates, neighbours etc in them, who smooth the path as and when space exists. Its not a public event, its not advertised, spectators are not invited. Its a collection of private events which come together for a short period of their durations for a single private event held in public, and pedestrians have been allowed to spectate if they wish, simply due to the fact there's no legitimate reason to prohibit them from the public pavements concerned. The venues, with the exception of the Town Hall aren't public events, they're by invitation only of the hostess(ess), just the same as their namesakes of the open houses back in the day.
    9 points
  6. Sukibind

    Shetland Home Company

    Well, its 10 months since COPE received £112,312.00 to "Provide up to 15 work placements" for people with disabilities and as far as I can ascertain there has not been so much as 1 place provided. I would be delighted if COPE could correct me on that point and tell me that several new placements have been provided. What I do know is that the old Scrapstore has been 're-furbished' and that the 'pet project' soap shop have had huge amounts of money splurged on them, and to what effect? This is Shetland where we are more impressed with what you do, rather than what you have. I also note that the prices in the Scrapstore have reached 'London' prices!! It would seem to be that it now thinks of its self as a fashionable antique store... Has it lost sight of the fact that most of its content is donated? and that the people that do donate would like their items to help POOR people to replace/ furnish their homes. It seems to me that COPE scrapsore has lost its way, where once it was the place that people in need could turn to for help in furnishing a modest home, it now seems to be trying to be some sort of fashionable home design ...thing.. Which is the only word I could come up with to describe what COPE has turned into, and poor folks can, well, look elsewhere... ,
    9 points
  7. Windwalker

    glasshouse plans

    Ghufar, it's sad that you should have felt you had to come on here and defend your position. The glass houses belong to you and it is your business what you ask for or sell them to. However, the points you have made may help ease the pain of some who make comments prior to knowing the full story. As for the Bargain Centre, you, your father and your grandfather before him, have provided a great service over many years to us customers in Shetland. I have bought lots of small item and most of my furniture from you over the years and will continue to do so. I worked with your Grandfather Wally Mohamad when he first arrived in Shetland and bought lot of clothes from him when he first opened his shop in Hancie Smiths old place. From that small beginnings your family, through hard work, have built up a good business, providing a great service to us all. Many thanks for that. As for being a Shetlander, I always thought you were born here, but even if you weren't I think you have earned the title by now
    9 points
  8. Paolo67

    Unst. Miserable

    They are indeed a picture of misery and gloom Bluevac, for many reasons; With even the slightest change in ferry timetables they are forced to eat cormorants. Excessive consumption of salted cormorants over prolonged winters has been linked to rickets in children and diabetes in rats. Rickety children and diabetic rats is the stark reality faced by Unst folks in austere times. The parents of the rickety children are also fighting to save the last surviving school and the last surviving Talc quarry on the island to secure a future for the community. Both are riddled with asbestos. A council survey recently concluded that 76% of Unst people can't even spell 'community' without the help of Google, Another council survey concluded that 76% of Unst people can' access Google without installing Satellite Broadband. That same 76% also failed to spell 'Satellite' within seven attempts. A greater number of Unst people carry a smouldering anger, frustration and paranoia against the world of inanimate objects and failing electronic devices. They punch plasterboard walls regularly to vent their rage. Their houses are well vented too and the rats get in. There is also a suspected serial killer at large. The population has dropped from 1100 to 500 in twenty years and Police have found no leads. The Policeman disappeared too in 2001. The last job on the island is also under threat of automation since the Waterboard decided not to replace the technician who regulated the fluoride and chlorine levels in the Island's water supply. A lost generation of rickety children had their education tailored for this post and were groomed for the position. They are probably qualified to run a bath or operate anything wth two taps. Their only other skill set would be fishing a dead horse from a loch if required. 76% of that lost generation couldn't spell 'maintenance' or 'technician'. That was their happy lot. No longer. Lastly, following two decades of exposure to the noise pollution of oil traffic they suffer from P.F.T., a Pitch Fluctuating variant of Tinnitus which rings like a constant National Anthem of 'God Save the Queen' in their ears giving them an aloofness and reverent countenance that could be misinterpreted as a dismissive stiffness of character. In sadder times now, the skies are no longer a choppity-chug of helicopters; the toxic talc quarries are no longer a thud of dynamite and diesel water-pumps; the wax-buffed school floors are no longer a-squeak or a scurry of plimsoled feet running to the clangity-clang of a janitor's bell and 76% of Unst people can't spell 'marmalade'. In Unst they call it 'orange jam'.
    8 points
  9. Frances144

    Frances

    Ummm, I make no money from my blog in any way. I endorse no products for anyone. I just write about what I see and how I feel. I am sad you hate it. I am not on happy pills. (just gin occasionally) Oh, and I can't knit.
    8 points
  10. Claadehol

    100 sheep shot

    Colin, I must point out that shooting rabbits and shooting sheep can hardly be considered the same thing. Rabbits breed to plague proportions and are a major pest on farms in various countries. Shooting is just one of the necessary control measures. Sheep on the other hand are farmed and provide food, wool, and a livelihood for countrymen everywhere. I think you should think a little before making any more imbecilic comments.
    8 points
  11. I was lucky enough to qualify for a shared ownership Hjatland house with my partner after years of renting privately when I was younger, it was a fantastic help and after seeing the recent rental market it makes me count my blessings, I would never have been able to afford to rent privately at todays prices. I now own a different property which will border the Staney hill development and have already had a letter through the door asking if we have any objections. Me and the wife had a chat about it and although the development will almost certainly have a detrimental effect on our house we decided it would be wrong to pull the ladder up behind us and put in any sort of objection and deny somebody else the opportunity we had.
    8 points
  12. So SNP deputy Keith Brown now warning us we will get poorer public services if we don't vote the right way. As I've said before, the SNP have deliberately held back on ferry fares, etc. as we have not voted their way in the past. This was purely political. Now lots of promises on these things are are being hurled our way. I don't like being blackmailed.
    7 points
  13. Capeesh

    Njord Market

    Slow to load, poor layout and full of annoying pop up ads, sorry Shetlink but I preferred the classifieds the way they were.
    7 points
  14. JGHR

    In The News - Comic Response

    The administrators post above is well noted, so I'll do my best to temper what will, I hope, be my final post on this subject. Prior to this week I had not posted on Shetlink for two years, perhaps more I'm not sure, mainly for the reasons the administrator identified above. But this week I was reminded of David Morrison, chief of the Australian Army's address to the international Women's day conference in 2013. It was while expressing his disgust and utter shame at the culture of bullying and harassment which had grown within his organisation, under his watch, that he made his now famous quote: 'The standard you walk past is the standard you accept' I don't accept bullying, I don't accept harassment, I don't accept trolls, and as much as I might have wanted to - it would have been the easiest thing to do by far - I couldn't walk past this thread. Nit picking, pointing out grammatical errors, spelling mistakes, posting of snide emoticons followed by phony insincere well wishing, it is bullying and it is trolling, and I condem it. I make no apology for that. After that came the victim blaming, which I find more repugnant than the original bullying by far. The initial behaviour could perhaps, if you were feeling charitable, be excused as simple ignorance. Victim blaming deserves no such quarter, it is a calculated callous attempt to inflict further injury and at the same time excuse the perpetrators. I robustly condem it, i make no apology for that. Now we have victim playing which is simply pathetic and I will not let it go unchecked. There is one victim in this sorry tale and one victim only and that is Fetlar Writer. Having your own behaviour scrutinised and called out in public does not make you a victim, irrespective of how ashamed it makes you feel. Being labelled with adjectives which describe your behaviours does not make you a victim, irrespective of how uncomfortable they are to wear. The standard you walk past is indeed the standard you accept and if Shetlink is to ever again to be the thriving vibrant online community it originally was, the people who wish it to be that way should not walk past. My work here is done.
    7 points
  15. Paolo67

    Unst. Miserable

    In Unst, any reliance on 'lovely' or 'super' in descriptive narrative is hackneyed superficial gush. Unst people only use adjectives to describe something that is dead, lost or stolen. We used to have a policeman. He was a lovely guy. People still play badminton. The badminton scene is the only scene and it has always been a thriving scene. Whoever and whatever you are.. on Thursday evenings you are free to strut your stuff in badminton shorts. The serial killer probably enjoys Badminton. The population has reached a critical point where it cannot sustain a Masonic Lodge. The Unst Councillor punches above his weight, the schools close and children get rickets. Most children would prefer to be in an orphanage than a happy family unit. At least they would get a wifi connection. They could post smileys and super selfies like everybody else. Aww.
    7 points
  16. Imagine you're organising a stag do. You're the best man and you're all flying to Amsterdam. The groom is a pretty popular guy, but he's only wanting 22 pals to come away with him (for whatever reason). One of the boys drops out so your wife suggests one of her female pals that would like to come along. Does saying 'no' to that idea make you a backward, sexist, misogynistic dinosaur? You can attach all the tradition and gravitas you want to Up Helly Aa, but for most of us it's a p1ss-up comparable to the scenario above, where the best craic is on the bus where you spend most of the night singing, drinking, making crude jokes and talking sh1te. While I know for a fact that there are many women that excel in this pursuit as much as men, I suspect most of us would rather just keep it as it is. To conflate the dynamics of this boozy party with the Equal Pay for Women issue, or even the vile treatment of women by abusive, powerful men from Westminister to Hollywood is disingenuous and ridiculous. In doing so we cast both male and female participants in this fantastic festival as complicit villains or meek, subservient spectators of sex discrimination. There are more men wanting to go out in squads than there are places. There are more lasses wanting to go to halls than there are tickets. A few shrill letters to the Shetland times have not diminished their enthusiasm for the festival. Be 'offended' all you want, but come next Tuesday men and women will be dancing the night away and not giving a flying... torch.
    7 points
  17. 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 few centuries at least, consider Orkney & Shetland as a "true" part of Scotland, any more than many Orcadians and Shetlanders consider themselves 'Scottish' - We are very much the reluctant and mostly ignored foster child which they don't want, but their greed won't let them let go of. Just like you sometimes see (albeit not so often these days) a family with kids of their own, but one or more foster kids as well, who are very obvious by the fact they wear the hand me downs, while the biological children are always dressed in the new stuff - The foster ones are only where they are because the fosterers get an allowance paid for them, they're a commodity, and commodities only justify the minimum investment to ensure they continue to yield the maximum payout. We're a commodity in the same way to the Scottish political establishment, and right now they're conducting an experiment in just how low they can let their investment go without affecting the returns on it they get from us. Secondly, we're sitting on a little bit of money, and nobody in Holyrood is going to take pity on us and send momey here when it serves their interests better to throw it around as bribes for votes in the central belt, as that's where the numbers are that matter as to whether they stay on their gravy train or not, it doesn't matter how we vote, as in the bigger picture our influence whoever we vote in is minimal, the support the local SNP branch was getting from Head Office and the quality of candidates they've put forward in both Scottish and national elections in the recent past is proof enough that they really don't care what happens here. We're on our own to sink, we can choose between spending our reserves to plug the gap in Government funding either quickly or slowly, but until its all spent there will be no compassion or fairness coming this way out of Holyrood, only empty promises and flowery talking, and any compassion even then will only come if we go cap in hand and do a lot of begging. Or we can take on Holyrood at their own game, with the right research, planning and tactics any Council, including this one, could, back Holyrood in to a corner where they had to choose between honouring their obligations to the entire populations in a reasonable and fair manner, or face the real prospect of being painted so black their chances of holding on to power were all but wiped out. That unfortunately seems to be the last thing on our lot's mind though, given that the only reported reaction from our great white leader to yet another funding reduction was to scuttle away with his tail between his legs muttering about "more cutbacks to keep within the Edinburgh enforced budget". What happened to fighting for our fair share? I doesn't need much midder wit to know that if you just meekly and submissive accept whatever you're offered, you're very liable to be offered even less next time round - and we are, time and time again. Yet those on top of teh ttem here let it happen over and over again. Things will get worse regardless, but they'd get worse a whole lot more slowly if Edinburgh were a bit nervous of just what sort of broadside was about to be unleashed on them from these northern wastelands unless they sent enough to keep our protestations down to a dull roar. 'Those who fail to learn from history are destined to repeat the same mistakes' or something like that is how the adage goes - History tells us that between 1500 and 1900 we were lorded over by the Scottish establishment who systematically ground both the place and the people in to the ground by creaming off almost all of the lion's share in the better times and ignoring folk's needs in the harder ones. History aso tells us that in the 15 years or so since the establishment of the Scottish Parliament the apple hasn't fallen far from the tree in the 100+ years we've managed to largely stay out from under their thumb.....The thumb is now well and truly back, and if you want to have a general idea of how the remainder of this century will unfold politically, go check your history for the period 1600-1900 and the attitude of those who held power then, as the immediate future will be the same MO, only adapted to suit modern society and lifestyles. The Council themselves could do much to put their own house in order as well, which would minimise the need for cuts in the actual service delivery. They're sitting on a grossly bloated over-complicated management system, and using many equally over complicated and un-necessary management and admin procedures and systems, not to mention the slew of totally un-necessary 'non-job' positons, all of which are drawing salaries and incurring costs needlessly. The place would run as well, probably better in fact, if all the desk bound elements between the elected members and the front line staff were completely redesigned and streamlined with an emphasis on minimalisation, effectiveness and efficiency, and yield a scarily surprising amount in savings, but there seems no stomach within the organsation to even explore that avenue.
    7 points
  18. Right, let's break this down then:- "From July 2018 how we handle our rubbish will be changing. There are a lot of questions around the new service. Here are the main questions:" Oh good, it's their rubbish. "Why is the Council doing this? The Scottish Government has set the target of recycling 70% of all waste by 2025. In 2015/16 the national average was 44%, whilst Shetland was just 9%. Upcoming legislation will also mean that we will no longer be allowed to burn hard plastics and non-ferrous metals at the Energy Recovery Plant."Define "upcoming legislation". Is this legislation that has already been passed and is yet to come into force or proposed legislation? "How will it be collected? Households will have two green bins with different coloured lids and a reusable bag for recycling. The blue-lidded bin will be for card and paper. The grey-lidded bin will be for cans, cartons and plastic bottles. Put these bins at your usual collection point on the right day and it will be uplifted and returned to where you left it. The reusable bag will be for you to take glass to your nearest bring site. A full list of what is collected will be available soon."So, I'm to drive down the road to dump my glass containers, am I? That's not very green. There isn't room for the wheelie bins here. Where they meant to live in the meantime? "How often will my rubbish and recycling be collected? We will be collecting on a four week cycle. You will need to put out the correct bin on your usual collection day. If you put out anything else other than what is meant to be collected that week it will not be picked up. Example of collection cycle:Week 1: Card & Paper (blue-lidded bin)Week 2: Non-RecyclableWeek 3: Cans, Cartons & Plastics (grey-lidded bin)Week 4: Non-Recyclable"So there isn't a wheelie bin for non-recyclable rubbish? Here's a thought - have ONE wheelie bin but issue different coloured rubbish bags free of charge. "Why isn't glass being collected on the kerbside? Glass is being collected separately to help prevent broken bottles/jars contaminating the rest of the recycling in your bins. Fill your reusable recycling bag and take it to one of the new bring sites whenever suits you."So it's fine for the general public to run the risk of injury but not SIC workers in other words. "Why is my rubbish only being collected once a fortnight? We will still be collecting from every property once a week just picking up different things each visit. The more you recycle the less you'll put into the non-recyclable bin."And where are we meant to put rubbish in the meantime? Cloud cuckoo land? "Why bother? I've heard you burn all the recycling anyway! Legally anything we collect for recycling must be recycled. So everything you put into your recycling bins will be recycled."Except rural areas under the Regulations are EXEMPT where it is not practicable or cost effective to do so. You want "your" rubbish recycled, you can sort it and create jobs in the meantime ... or does the money given for this scheme not cover installing equipment that can sort it? "What about the District Heating Scheme? The District Heating Scheme will continue. Other fuel sources can provide a cheaper and more environmentally friendly alternative to burning diesel. So once all your recycling is removed the Scheme will have more than enough energy for its customers." That's not what they're saying, that's an assumption."Do I have to buy a wheelie bin for my non-recyclable rubbish? No. We will collect the non-recyclable rubbish however you currently present it, so long as it is out at 7.30am on the correct day of collection. You will find that once you separate out your recycling what's left will reduce significantly." Nope. I did this malarkey years ago. Not everyone has space to store it. What happens is you have several bags half full meaning you spend more money on bags, and you get confused as hell as to what is recyclable and what isn't."Is it only in Lerwick? No. We are rolling out the new system across all of Shetland." Ah yes, "rolling"."The bins will blow away! There are many ways to secure wheelie bins, from bin stores to clamps/grips to bungee cord. During very bad weather all collections could be suspended and arranged for another day." The bin store isn't big enough! Bad weather? That'll be from September to April then. "I don't have space for wheelie bins! I've got too many steps! I don't have a kerbside! We will be assessing all routes to see what issues there might be and how they can be solved to let everyone recycle. If you have any specific issues please contact us." You should have done that FIRST. Again, certain areas are EXEMPT under the Regulations. I'm just trying to visualise the rubbish truck actually being able to reverse, what with all these wheelie bins and cables strewn about charging up the lekky cars."What if I put the wrong thing in the wrong bin? Everyone makes mistakes. If the collection crews see the wrong material in the bin they'll leave you a note, highlighting what was wrong and how you can get it right for next time. Further advice and support will always be available should you need it." And how will they know the rubbish is mine? How will they know that someone hasn't dumped rubbish in my bin? What's the fine for non-compliance then? You have a duty to promote but hey after all, it's YOUR rubbish, I merely gifted it to you."We will publicise further information and developments over the next few months. However, if you have any other questions on the new recycling scheme, please contact us: email: recycling@shetland.gov.uktel: 01595 744810" Which councillor mentioned this in their manifesto? Did any? What's the point in contacting you, you will just patronise folk and won't listen. This is about ticking boxes in order to meet EU legislation. It's not green. It's not saving the planet.
    7 points
  19. Well whatever is said,this was an expensive project that was not required. Just a complete waste of public money that should have been spent elsewhere on something more needful. These humps and bumps will not bring more trade to "Da Street" and I also doubt if it makes it any safer.
    7 points
  20. Gorgonzola Butt-cheese

    EU

    Can you vote for Juncker? Can you vote for Tusk? Can you vote for Shultz? The only questions that matter, as so eloquently put by Tony Benn: 1. What power have you got? 2. Where did you get it from? 3. In whose interests do you exercise it? 4. To whom are you accountable? 5. How can we get rid of you? The last is of paramount importance, and particularly when the EU fails to address this last point so badly - the European Commission, take note.
    7 points
  21. Ghostrider

    EU

    Get out. The EU have either destroyed/done nothing to help save the industries we had when we went in, and have brought us nothing to replce them with we argubly couldn't have achieved just fine without them. Yeah, there may be rougher blips as we go through the transition of leaving, but once the dust settles we'll be in no worse a place than we re right now, and should be in a much better one. Its no different than the rougher blips we went through going in, nothing got any better than it was before we went in, things just got done that bit differently, that's all, and now being in is dragging us down. The EEC/EU was aphilosophy that was worthy of examination, and we've gone as far as try it out for over 40 years. Its never really done what it said on the tin, and by all apperances things can only worsen, not better, so quit throwing good money after bad and try something else. The original conception of the EEC maybe worked okayishly, and maybe it could have continued to work okayishly if it had stayed that way, but what it is now is heading for an implosion. Common sense and a quick glance at a world map soon lets you know large land masses under common control only work tolerably in practice when their greatest extent is east/west, not north/south. eg. The Yanks, Canada, Russia etc. The EU stretches from the Arctic Circle to the Med, and trying to apply the same set of rules to the Swedes, Greeks and Germans, or the Spanish, us and the Finns etc, given the vast differences between those nations, is never going to work. A small group of nations in similar latitudes probably could have worked, say, France, Germany, Belgium, Holland and maybe us an Ireland etc, but with what they have it can't, and all thats been happening these last twenty years is that they've been trying to stop what they have from falling apart, and now is the time to quit even that as its failed too in the end. Once a whole starts becoming unstable, the usual form is that the periphieries detach first as they have the weakest connection to the core. Greece, Spain, Italy, Portugal, Sweden and Finland are peripheries due to their locations at the northern and southern ends, us and Ireland are peripheries due to being island nations. Greece has all but committed suicide by opting to stay in, Spain isn't exctly doing sh*t hot with staying either, things aren't exactly a bed of roses in Merkel's "Motherland" or some of her buffer satellite nations, the writing is on the wall, time we were gone while we're still able to exit on our terms and survive, so as not end up in the same hole as Greece.
    7 points
  22. I can't believe it, I really can't. I've just finished watching Superman - and it turns out it wasn't filmed on planet Krypton at all but right here on planet Earth! Did anybody else know this? My childhood is now destroyed. Sometimes I wonder why hardly anybody posts on Shetlink anymore, then I read topics like this and my memory is restored....
    7 points
  23. Did you also notice in the closing credits 'All places and locations are fictitious'? If you want to watch a documentary on Shetland look elsewhere. If on the other hand you want a fictitious crime drama then watch the series.
    7 points
  24. This is one of the great problems of our time as I see it. At every level Government representatives, employees and officials are not held accountable for wasting public funds. In private business if employees squander vast sums they are disciplined or sacked, public money should be held under more scrutiny not less! I hope that if Wir Shetlands campaign is a success and we can set up a new Government for Shetland then a large degree of accountability can be built in to the system, it is no less than the public deserve!
    7 points
  25. Davie P

    Poverty in Shetland

    It's a shame to see another potentially interesting and constructive thread take such a needlessly negative turn at the hands of the same group of folk.
    7 points
  26. Okay, firstly I didn't find your post in any way unpleasant to read. Generally speaking we're a reasonably tolerant bunch up here near the Arctic Circle, especially where any criticism is directed from a (perhaps very understandable) position of misconception. I won't pretend I'm speaking for all Shetlanders, as I'm not, I can't, and I don't want to. While you may have gained the impression (and I can see why you may have done so, given that many posts here are worded in a way that assumes the reader already knows the history and back story involved) that Shetlanders see Scots as some sort of "foreign enemy", the situation is very far from being that simple. Generally speaking Shetlanders have nothing against the "(wo)man in the street" Scot, any more than they have anything against her/his counterpart in England, Wales, Ireland, or just about any other country on this planet. However, the same cannot be said for the "Scottish Establishment", be that old King James III of Scotland who back in 1492 began a trail of shenanigans with Shetland as one of his pawns, the current Scottish Parliament, its predecessor in the shape of the Scottish Office, or whatever else has constituted a "Scottish Establishment" over the rest of those 500 odd years inbetween. Throughout those 522 years the "Scottish Establishment" in whatever shape it took, be it the minor Royals and "nobility" and their lackeys who came first, the "professionals" (lawyers/ministers etc) with aspirations of power and wealth that followed them, to the present day "politicians". Largely without exception have established and maintained a reputation of taking from Shetland as much as they could, giving as little as they could get away with, and frequently throughout history leaving behind them a trail of abuse, dirty-dealing and carnage in their wakes. Shetland has survived and occasionally thrived thus far, despite "Scotland", not because of "Scotland" - and I'll hasten to add, by "Scotland" I mean the Royalty, Nobility and people in positions of power and/or influence within Scotland, no one else. Its little more than 100 years since the taking advantage and the abuse of Shetland and Shetlanders by the parts of "Scotland" that had direct influence over us was finally brought to an end - by nothing to do with Scotland, but by the United Kingdom. Since then, we've had to endure the tender mercies of such things as the Scottish Office and the Scottish Parliament, who despite dressing up their dealings in prettier clothes than their predecessors, failed to manage to hide that they still saw us as a place and people who were "out of sight and out of mind" unless we had something they wanted, just as their predecessors right back to 1492 had done. The current crop who've been trying to sell Scottish Independence to us have had done nothing to help change our minds, Edinburgh feels equally remote and out of touch with us as Westminster does, so why would we consider changing for change's sake? Westminster with all its faults is at least the devil we know, Edinburgh has never given any indication in its past 15 years of existence of being good for us, the empty promises of political propaganda pre-referendum didn't even hint at any change in that. Then if you throw a little practical history in to the mix, it just racks the reasoning up a little higher. Shetland was Scandinavian until 1492, Scotland ceased to be a seperate nation in 1707. The vast majority of Scottish history isn't our history, and thereby by default the vast majority of Scottish culture and identity isn't our culture and identity. In the last 1014 years Shetland has been Scandinavian for 492 years, Scottish for 215 years (during which Scotland only had relatively minimal influence on the ground in Shetland) and British for 307 years. Granted although we were still technically tacked on to Scotland throughout those 307 years of being part of the UK, the whole show was run from London, not Edinburgh, so any direct Scottish influence on us wasn't particularly great. Then throw in to the mix also that its only been for the last 150 years or so that we've had any great deal of import/export contact with Scotland, prior to that the greater part of Shetland's trade in both directions was with the Continent, and that up to around a century ago Shetlanders leaving the isles to start a life elsewhere in the UK were equally if not more likely to choose an English destination than a Scottish one. Take all of the above together, and I think its reasonable to ask why would "Scotland" expect us to align ourselves with and support them in an independence bid. "Scotland" may well be who we've been tacked on to for 522 years, but that wasn't our choice, and for the last 307 years it didn't matter all that much, as the UK was in overall charge anyway. Shetland has around 700 years or so of shared heritage and culture with Scandinavia, albeit a long time ago, we have 215 years of being exclusively "Scottish" almost as long ago and during a period when the Scottish influence wasn't particularly great, we then had a century or so despite being British that arguably we were influenced equally as much by Dutch culture, and finally the last century or so of shared culture and heritage with the UK. Scotland may well have been around in the background for a long time as far as Shetland has been concerned, but as far as shared heritage and culture goes, there's next to none. Depending on your point of view we're either a cosmopolitian beast that identifies with many, but because of that finds it difficult to align totally with any, or are an obnoxious little bar steward hanging around on the peripheries annoying everyone. Bottom line, Shetland and many Shetlanders seem to have difficulty identifying with and understanding the Scottish nation and psyche, and feel Scotland and many Scots have equal difficulty with understanding Shetland and Shetlanders' psyche. Certainly, Shetlanders and Scots have common ground, but not enough for us to genuinely feel we belong in "Scotland". Speaking from a purely personal viewpoint, I would suspect Shetland returned such a high percentage "No" vote, because we were asked the wrong questions, giving us no choice but vote tactically to achieve the same end by other means. Whether Scotland is an independent nation or not I do not feel is any concern or business of mine, as a Shetlander I don't identify as a Scot nor do I feel any particular affinity to Scotland any more than I feel towards England, Wales or Northern Ireland. Being asked to vote on whether I felt Scotland should be an independent nation or not, I felt a bit of an interloper and fraud, and would have preferred to have abstained, but as Scotland was insisting we came along wherever they went that really wasn't a viable choice. Despite your assumptions, Shetland's vote was nothing personal against your average Scot, who we see as no different to any other Brit, or human whatever nationality. It was against a Scottish establishment who we feel have always been and still are as bad for Shetland as you appear to believe a British establishment is for Scotland. As I said Edinburgh is as remote and out of touch to us as Westminster is, and probably feels as remote and out of touch with Shetland to us, as Westminster does to you. Once you put more than a couple of hundred miles between points, especially north/south points, you're as remote and out of touch that it doesn't matter whether you go a few more hundred miles further or not, the understanding and connection has largely been lost and the bit extra really makes little difference.
    7 points
  27. Normally i can't stand "debates" where people post links and quote others when trying to make a point. It's just lazy. However, I will do exactly that here, and as be as stereotypical as possible by quoting Stephen Fry, who in this case most definitely hit the nail square on the head : "It's now very common to hear people say, 'I'm rather offended by that.' As if that gives them certain rights. It's actually nothing more... than a whine. 'I find that offensive.' It has no meaning; it has no purpose; it has no reason to be respected as a phrase. 'I am offended by that.' Well, so f**king what."
    7 points
  28. This week I went and bought a Golly from this lovely lady. I actually went for something else. While there I noticed a witch toy with a hook nose. No doubt a Jewish poet will now claim racial stereotypes for this being on sale. Then there is the 'protect the troll society' worried about their image when some are scary and frighten children and others are friendly. Also the electricity board could object to her sale of oil lamps as it suggests the possibility of needing them for powercuts and this could cause distress to those without any. some of her vintage toys represent war and this could be distressing to pacifists. Also lack of money distresses me since I can't afford most of it. Since this shop is potentially causing so much distress I recommend its closure along with all other shops where distress may be caused to some one somewhere. Thus all shops selling clothes in sizes too small for me must close with immediate effect. Now obviously I don't mean this but what I do want to say is grow up. Everyday there is something disagreeable and distressing in some way, its life and not worth getting distressed over. This man has a different upbringing, a different culture he sees racism in things where others do not. Reading his blog he comes over as bitter and angry so he wishes to project this on to others. Lets waste no more time on him and his sad world. we live in a better place.
    7 points
  29. I don't know about everyone else but I am utterly fed up with this election campaign. Mainly from the drivel and empty promises being spewed by the SNP but also by the arrogant and disrespectful tactics of the Lib Dems. ​I would be delighted if Ryan Thomson could pull off a shock and beat them both. Neither Party has Shetland's interests at heart. I am sure Beatrice does and, though I have never met Tom Wills I accept that he probably does as well. The problem lies with their centralized leadership. Tom Wills would be utterly unable to criticize any SNP decision which negatively affects Shetland (which happens often) whilst Beatrice would be hampered with the issue of having to toe the Party line regarding opposing the SNP at every opportunity until the independence question is settled. I fear neither would have the clout or freedom to actually solve any of Shetlands most pressing problems. ​An independent may not have the resources and support of a large political machine but at least they would be able to give criticism where it is due and not have to take orders from a Party HQ like some footsoldier in a seemingly endless war which tends to totally overlook the needs of Shetland. ​I see people going on about what the SNP have done for us but if you have been paying attention in recent years regarding their behavior towards the SIC then your rose-tinted glasses should have come off. They have repeatedly forced the Council into unsustainable budgetary positions by refusing to provide Fair Ferry Funding (remember this was promised years ago as another vote winning tactic). Why on earth anyone would believe these new promises about free foot passenger travel on our beleaguered internal ferry service is beyond me given they are not even funding the current service as they should be. ​There is also zero commitment on when, if and how our ageing fleet and infrastructure will be replaced. The importance of these internal links to the Isles, and Shetland, cannot be overstated. Unfortunately, it appears easily ignored from Edinburgh. ​I wish there was a pro-Shetland party pushing for autonomy, greater control of our resources and an end to living at the whim of some out of touch career politician sitting in Westminster or Holyrood who often wouldn't even manage point to Shetland on a map. ... that turned in to a bit of a rant
    6 points
  30. Good god what a lot of drivel in this article! Crime has reduced by 50% thanks to the increase in officers? I'd be interested in seeing more detail in those statistics. In Whalsay we rarely ever see a policeman so it is no wonder crime figures are down, Police Scotland have closed their recently built police station. When asked why Police are no longer stationed in the outer Isles the Chief Inspector replied they do not have the resources, where has the increase been? They have supported our internal ferry service? Everyone must be aware that they are consistently refusing to fully fund the revenue service, let alone commit to the capital funding of the much needed replacements. They have forced the Council to draw from it's reserves in order to make a balanced budget. Far from fighting to improve transport they are hindering it! Externally, they have bought unfit for purpose vessels that are under capacity. They have introduced parking charges at Sumburgh, are relocating air traffic control to Inverness and are refusing to pay air traffic controllers enough wages to hinder them going on strike (you might claim this is HIAL but they are just a Government quango). He also totally fails to mention the SNPs raison d'etre - Scottish Independence. Why that I wonder? Could it be because Shetland voted No and is traditionally against Scottish Independence? Shetland Islands Council has had it's funding cut by the SNP Government over and over again, more so than any other area. They are making conscious choices to starve local government of funding and force them to make cuts, how is that supporting rural communities? Mr Wills must think we are blind and have very short memories! https://www.thenational.scot/news/17785143.tom-willis-snp-good-shetland/?ref=fbshr&fbclid=IwAR3KGli_C_NMRtFuX495hAe9jOAGE29MRNMny-RnQnJcgI1o74oCADnZF5I
    6 points
  31. Why should we pay for clips, elastic cord, cement, building sheds etc, etc for these wheelie bins? Does the council not have to provide all this for this wheelie bins? is that not part of what we pay council tax for? All this new rules about what goes in what bin is very confusing and they also expect you to wash containers. Might be all very well for most healthy folk, but there are a lot of disabled folk and pensioners who are living alone who are simply not that able to drag these bins around and understand what goes in what bin. This will cause a great deal of worry and stress on folk that isn't able or doesn't understand it, which will lead to further health problems. Remember not every disabled person or pensioner has the home help or care they need.
    6 points
  32. http://www.shetnews.co.uk/news/15970-sic-appoints-first-ever-female-chief-executive So, she's all about supporting the workforce and let's just ride rough-shod and not bother to ask the service users what they want because, according to the link, it's all about the staff. Well Mags, you seem to think that ROSPA's stance on blinding bungee cords for wheelie bins should be ignored and deem them to be a good solution, regardless of the risks. Years ago you had the circling dog poo with pink paint, that was short lived too. As for other Heads of Department? Somehow, I'm not visualising you coming down hard on them, it all seems a tad too cosy. There are many good staff working for the SIC, but there's many who, quite frankly, need booting out. And it starts with the top. Now unless a certain online publication has been incredibly picky about what they printed, the article illustrates Mag's mindset - it's all about the workforce and how they know best - it's about time they started to remember they are there to serve the PUBLIC, the service users. I'm with Frances144 and Ghostie here.
    6 points
  33. wotsit

    Bowls Hall

    A proper school hall area for exams, speeches, school plays etc would have been good idea to have been included in the plans. Why so many staff rooms? .
    6 points
  34. 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 need to be brought into play ASAP so the isles as a whole can get into the 21st century so everyday people can get about and do there work.
    6 points
  35. This seems to be fulfilling the prophecy that once the Viking windfarm came it would open the floodgates for every hill in Shetland to be covered in wind turbines.
    6 points
  36. ill folk are dragged back and forth to aberdeen on a 14 hour sea journey countless times to receive medical treatment convicted criminals and folk on remand are flown back and forth from aberdeen as required both paid for out of the same pot think about that for a minute
    6 points
  37. The report also added and named two businesses s that already " sell really responsibly " that's great , however is it the correct use of NHS resources to specifically be seen apparently to endorse off - licenses ? I dont doubt for one minute that these ( named ) business's are good and stock high quality brands , however to shop here ( as apparently the NHS are encouraging me to do ?) would be a treat for me. I ,like many folk , have to manage my budget. I enjoy a glass of wine with my meals ( previously reported by the national press as good for your heart ! - a researched study that has however since been questioned ) I shop at supermarkets where I can buy a half decent wine that is affordable - drinking out is not an option as it would involve driving and is expensive. Does the report intimate that alcoholics are only to be found in a lower earning bracket or do the named establishments only serve a better class of alcoholics ?! It is unfortunate that this report whilst trying to tackle alcohol misuse, a real problem , not just in health issues and strain on already stretched NHS resources, appears to have been hijacked by the directives of the Scottish Govt. and the arrogant and snobbish directive to shop for alcohol at two named shops.! Please can the NHS in Shetland refrain from any involvement in private business. What happened to the dedicated alcohol and drug centre ? and finally . Hey , it's my bloody choice under a democratic system to make autonomous decisions ( and a human right I believe ) I dont want to be governed by a fascist dictatorship , and if this is a taste of Scottish Government's influence in these Islands ( and i feel some sympathy towards the author's of the report if this is the case ) then im joining " Wir Shetland" Cheers
    6 points
  38. Ghostrider

    EU

    The EU is striving to become a United States of Europe, we've known this for at least the last 25 years, and its now clear "reform from within" to prevent it isn't a realistic a option, too many in it are on a "USE or bust" mission. Look at the USA, as that is the model they're (loosely?) following, the only thing is Europe is trying to do it cutting out a few of the arguably most important checks and counter balances the USA has right at the top of the pile. For a "United States" of anywhere to have a hope of working you need certain elements, a single currency (check for the EU), nationwide laws (increasing rapidly in the EU), nationwide single law enforcement and military jurisdiction (the former is well underway and the latter (allegedly) proposed/planned in the EU), arguably being the main ones for "the state" to be able to function. Where it all goes a bit pear shaped for the EU though is that while the USA nationally has Congress, the Senate and a President each seperately (democratically?) elected by the nation who provide counter balances and checks to each other, the EU has the European Parliament (Congress equivalent) but any excuse for a Senate or "President" are all appointed by a core clique answerable to no-one but themselves, and there's no hint that hierachy might change anytime soon. Effectively the EU has, on the ground, a potentially workable system, *if* that's what the population wants to make work, but a stinking dirty rotten "leadership". If you want the UK, or Scotland to be the equivalent in a "Europe" nation as the likes of Maine or Montana are within an "America" nation, then the EU's plans are for you, but just remember that the USA was created within a relatively short period of time by a generally equal group of people, and they still needed a civil war and few other skirmishes to figure out how to live that way. Europe on the other hand is a "nation" of multiple cultures, national identities, borders and grudges as old as the earth it sits on, and pretty much all of whom have fought pitched battles with each other in relatively recent history. Its not impossible, in fact it could be easy, *if* it was the will of the people to make it work, but it'll be long drawn out and bloody as long as those in charge continue to order the people to do what they're told to make it happen. For over forty years the Soviets used every means of force available to them to obliterate several former Eastern European nations and assimilate them and their populations, and we all know where that ended up. As soon as the means of force vanished those populations and nations re-constitued themselves right back to where they were prior to outside intervention. If the Soviets using force failed so miserably at that forced integration exercise, and the EU hierachy didn't learn from it that force in such matters equals failure, there really isn't much more to say about them until and unless they learn that the carrot works better than the stick. For anyone who still doesn't believe the EU is doing its damndest to become the USE, it might be worth having a look at the UEF before dismissing the idea entirely.
    6 points
  39. I'm glad to see the response of some local's towards the crisis that is going on in Europe at the moment with the Illegal immigrant's and refugees. I would guess, that with around five hundred local people desperate for affordable accommodation in Shetland, that all of those who are campaigning to welcome these extra people in are going to give them room and board at their own homes. I take my hat off to you, for opening your doors and homes to people you can not check up on and could be anywhere between respectable and a terrorist, you are truly generous. I hope to see a list on Shetlink and in the Shetland Times of those offering room and board to illegal immigrant's and refugees, in your own homes, with what you have available over the coming week.
    6 points
  40. whalsa

    Gaelic teaching

    Being 25 I think myself lucky that, being fae Whalsa, I retain a good amount of one of the dialects that make Shetland unique. I am always disappointed to hear Shetlanders the same age and younger than me speaking a much more diluted dialect. Then I speak to older Isles folk and realise that while I understand everything they say there are many words they use which have fallen out of favour with younger folk like myself. Dialect gets diluted every generation that much is clear. However if I were offered a choice between encouraging the reinforcement and retention of Shetlands existing unique dialects and promoting an obscure Scottish language which few here speak or have interest in speaking then it is a no brainer for me. Perhaps this could reverse the decline of Shetlands various tongues. More nonsense from Holyrood. As has been said if anyone wants to learn Gaelic then good luck to them but not a penny of Shetlands already underfunded education budget should go towards it.
    6 points
  41. Ghostrider

    Gaelic teaching

    Maybe any spare cash would be better spent on "promoting" the Shetland indigenous language first, before we worry (and spend) on someone else's. *If* it hadn't been literally battered out of generations of Shetlanders and the "Queen's English" battered in, by Scots as much as anyone else, it might well be in a far more healthy condition today. The "eduction system" owes us that much, even if they owe the Hebrideans the same.
    6 points
  42. Scorrie

    Gaelic teaching

    So you're advocating teaching an obscure minority language to an Island population that has virtually no historical or cultural Gaelic links?
    6 points
  43. Wrong section mate, but I'm sure the mods can point you in the right direction. My tuppence: Shetland is an extreme place to simply escape the rat race, but it's worked out okay for a lot of folk I guess. I was born here so don't have the rose-tinted specs that a lot of relative newcomers may have, but at the same time I've chosen to start a family and continue to keep this place as my home, so it's definitely got it's good points. I know you talked about the weather, but I don't think it's possible to fathom the effect it can have on not only your mood but also the ability to leave the isles. In summer we're lucky if we get more than a few days of unbroken of sunshine. There have been times when we've enjoyed a clear hot spell – and when that happens the place is unbeatable in my opinion. Thing is, sometimes summer doesn't really happen at all. This year we had a few nice days, but paid for it with a load of mist that disrupted planes to the mainland and scuppered many people’s holiday plans. As for the winter, well it's actually not much colder than mainland UK. Problem is that it's wetter, darker and much windier. The nights draw in fast and, come December you'll barely notice that the sun has risen before it sets again behind the clouds. Speaking of travel plans, bare in mind that leaving Shetland is a mission in itself. You can sail on the ferry (14 hours) or you can fly. Getting your whole family away and back wouldn't leave you with much change from a grand. The cost and the planning involved mean that a lot of folk only get a few trips sooth (that's Shetland for south, as you may have guessed) a year. Will your kids like it? It depends. If they're outdoors types they might love it - when they get the weather. When I was 17 I couldn't wait to leave for uni - and from what I hear teenagers still bemoan the lack of things to do up here, although you could argue that that's applicable to teenagers everywhere. When I was at school in the 90s I felt for incoming children from England. Their accents grated and stood out, and, as in many cultures, being different is not always something to be celebrated when you're a certain age. Perhaps with social media etc things are a bit better these days. Again, I guess it depends on they kids. Integration in to the community is a tricky one to pin down. In Lerwick there isn't, to my mind, a great deal of community. Sure there's clubs and interest groups, but I think the rural communities probably have more going for them in terms of socialising and getting involved. There is a significant distinction between Lerwick (the toon) and almost everywhere else. Property is harder to come by, but it's closer to the amenities. As a 'toonie' I prefer it, but I've got family and friends in the outlying areas that would never dream of living in Lerwick. I still go to the pubs when I can, although as the father of a young son it's less than I would like. I'd be generous if I was to say they were a mixed bag. They are almost all pretty dire. You'll maybe find a few threads devoted to this topic, but honestly, compared to mainland pubs they are a lacklustre affair, largely monopolised by a local publican with zero interest in improvements. The few independent ones are past their prime. Some of them trade on past glories - 'the lounge', for example, used to be an amazing place for local music and hospitality, but you'll find little of either nowadays. Others seem to mainly cater for the drinking needs of the incoming workers ('bargies'), who are predominately hard drinking males from Northern England cities like Liverpool, Newcastle or often places like Glasgow. Some of them are fine. I've little more to add in that respect! You mention Orkney. As a Shetlander we have a friendly (kinda) rivalry with Orcadians, but to be honest there are as many similarities as there are differences. I'm told the customer service, tourism and general levels of hospitality are far superior in Orkney. Having never spent much time there I can't really comment, but Shetland's customer service is sometimes hilariously bad. I've got a friend at work who moved up here from Fife a few years back and, while he does actually love it, he can't get over the general lack of interest many small businesses take in their customers. Again, you'll find threads devoted to this topic, and there are always exceptions. The good points? Well I can't think of a better place to bring up kids. It's safe, the standard of education is exceptional and there IS a lot to do, but it's seldom laid out on a plate for you - and that, to my mind, is sometimes good thing. As for the people, like anywhere they’re a mixed bag. As I wrote in a former thread: “there's a bit of a 'tall poppy syndrome' that's sometimes comes into play up here. Many a local toe has been inadvertently stepped on by well-meaning 'sooth-moothers' who brashly take control of local committees, clubs etc, wrongly assuming that the more moderate, quieter members are perhaps in need of more vocal leadership, when in reality they just have a more self-conscious approach, and are acutely aware that some of their fellow islanders have long memories, having probably known them all their lives. Tred lightly, smile and take the time to listen to what's going on before passing comment. You'll soon feel at home and hopefully you'll want to stay. “ Good luck in whatever you decide to do!
    6 points
  44. But this family didn't have a "sensible degree of flexibility" on their part - they missed the boat. They took the mickey by expecting the ferry to revolve around them. Had they telephoned say 30 mins/an hour ahead, I bet they would have held the boat for them for a short duration of time. 4.33pm - tickets to print. 4.35pm at the earliest - get lift up one flight. 4.37pm - start walking cos hey, can't run with all that luggage, what with cot bed, baby and everything. Can't leave it in left luggage cos it's already on its way to the boat ... which means it takes you longer to get to the boat. They were pushing it. That's assuming they were foot passengers. If they were in a hire car from Aberdeen, hire car needed returning. Granted, they give you a lift down to the ferry but sometimes you can wait 40 minutes for that. Sometimes you can wait 30 minutes (or more) in the queue when returning a hire car. Back in the good old days, as aforementioned, there were not so many Regulations. Blow it, let them miss the boat. Perish the thought of the boat going down, their bodies missing, and their grieving relatives demanding to know why their names weren't on the list as checked in. Oh yeah, they just let them on. Even if P&O were running it now, they would be faced with the Regulations which exist now, not back then. You seem remarkably free of any empathy or understanding towards these people. I suspect that 'taking the mikey' and 'pushing it' was not at the forefront of their minds given their uniquely traumatic circumstances. They were just trying to get home. Giving them a break would have been the decent thing to do.
    6 points
  45. Why don't all the folks in favour of VE and convinced it's all harmless actually swap properties with the folks who have to live in the path of these monstrosities?? Any takers? Still no referendum on wether the population wants the windfarm. And why not? Worried Shetland will tell VE to go..... and play with the traffic? If there had been a public vote and the decision been made democraticaly to build the damned thing I could accept the majority vote. But since no one bothers to ask Shetlanders I think it stinks to high heaven.
    6 points
  46. Its THE deciding factor for me. A game changer would also be traffic lights, small mini roundabout (with chevrons) and a lollypop person and Tesco would be history. And valet parking with a quick massage at the checkout too perhaps? I'm not quite sure if you're being serious. Hope not! I can't say I find the COOP car park that bad. White lines (or not) folk park (or not) the same, regardless. If your car is as precious (and you have working legs) there's always the option of parking in the other car park (with lines!) and walking the extra 20 yards.
    6 points
  47. As a family with a dog we go up to Unst 2 or 3 times a year. Always have to visit the chocolate factory. Never any complaints and always a good way to spend an hour or two. The raf saxaford museum room is brilliant and is very nostalgic for those of us whose pre season football preparation consisted of the mandatory friendly against the raf team and a Saturday night at Springfield! It's brilliant someone is making a business of making chocolate in unst and can't understand the negative comments aboot the cafe. A cake, coffee and microwaved macaroni for the bairns is just fine thanks. Canna understand what else is expected. They have an amazing collage of dog photos which amused wir bairns fur 20 mins so guess it's soon pretty obvious this place is dog friendly. Wis dog owners ken by noo that wir bairns are pretty immune tae contracting anything fae dem so my suggestion wid be that if u are no a dug person then dunna eat there. After reading dis thread I can see wir sammy will be welcome next time we go there so will b taking him in. The Baltasound hotel dus really good grub and we had a lovely meal there in the evening with really friendly service. Unst is great to go wi dog and bairns. Canna understand the negativity. Foords chocolate factory is an enjoyable part of the experience. Just chill oot folk.
    6 points
  48. May I remind you that large numbers of the population have dogs living in their homes where people prepare meals to eat and that generally there is little evidence that droves of people are dying from dog acquired disease. As long as basic hygiene is practised in the cafe I doubt if customers are at much risk. Would also mention that the Great British Pub or at least a good number of them welcomes customers dogs into the bar. Far more worrying is those people who keep "designer dogs" to go with their supposed tough image.
    6 points
  49. Speccy

    School closures

    I am struck by the lack of perspective. All over the country - all over the western world in fact - we are struggling to maintain the services we have built up to maintain a decent standard for our most vulnerable people. In Shetland we still have enough money to keep decent standards of welfare going, if we spend wisely. All Council departments have made cuts. Most have relatively small budgets compared to education and community care. There is not much more to glean from the other departments. Education and community care are the biggest spenders. The money should go where there is the greatest need. Community care is facing the same cuts as education. They are dealing with the most needy, vulnerable, friendless, lonely, abandoned, ill, senile, poverty-stricken and vulnerable. They need to help people who have a huge need, or to relieve their desperate families. Social work needs to be able to step in and protect the children in danger, the children who have much greater problems than which school they go to. They need to protect also our vulnerable adults, the people who no longer have parents to protect and support them. We are facing a situation already where cuts in care homes and social care could leave dangerous gaps in help for desperately needy adults. In schools, we are looking at a very good education system, being slowly starved of funds, but still very good. We are looking at cuts which could require teenagers to travel longer on a bus each day, or stay in a very good, supportive hostel, and still get a very good education, perhaps a better one. We are looking at children with protective, supportive and responsible parents to look after them, homes to go back to and the health and resilience to help them cope with change and perhaps even benefit from it. We are in very serious danger of keeping schools open due to emotive campaigning, and continuing to strangle our other services, including the ones which make life that little bit better for everyone, for the rest of our lives. And we will all need community care, sooner or later, for ourselves, for our elderly relatives. And so will these children that come after us. Please get a perspective.
    6 points
  50. trout

    Boy Racers

    SP you've outdone yourself again Make sure you don't get it all over your keyboard! Pretty outstanding generalisation there and really just speaks volumes.
    6 points
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