Up-Helly-A’ is over for another year, and those of you who have completed a dry January are hopefully toasting your success with a glass of something strong and sweet. We’ve really enjoyed seeing all your #myshetlandlife posts and photos this month – keep ‘em coming, we love to hear from you.
For this month’s issue of Shetland Life, we’ve immersed ourselves in the past. And, what better place to escape February’s biting cold? We visit Tommy Isbister in his boatshed and find out about his love of boat building and woodwork.
Maybe you’re thinking about celebrating Candlemas this year? Then let Alex Garrick-Wright take you on a journey through Shetland’s fascinating world of calendar traditions.
Or have you ever wondered about some of our place-names? Eileen Brooke-Freeman discusses some of the piggy place names around Shetland – this is the Year of the Pig after all.
And for those who are in search of a good story, and the odd trow, there are plenty of those to while away the last of the winter nights…
Finally, looking ahead we’ve been thinking about ways to get fit and beat the bulge. If you want to find out what we’re planning, pick up a copy of Shetland Life – out tomorrow!
This month Shetland Life are set to dive into the New Year feet first and we hope that you will join us for the ride. We go through the keyhole, taking a sneaky peek behind the scenes of Squad 43. And, with Up-Helly-A’ looming, we meet this year’s Jarl, John Nicolson, and discover how he became the fourth Nicolson Jarl – following in the footsteps of his father and brothers before him.
For those opting for better health and wellbeing in 2019, look out for our new columnist, Ali Grundon Robertson who this month focuses on consumerism. Finally, our new feature – in collaboration with RSPB Scotland – introduces a monthly Nature Calendar and examines the health benefits of a daily dose of fresh air, ensuring that you put your best foot forward into the New Year.
What are you waiting for? Look out for this month’s Shetland Life, in shops and online now!
This month we celebrate local examples of altruism: from Michael Grant’s selfless work with RNLI to the collective good-will and energy that have gone towards fund-raising for an MRI scanner. If you’re feeling touched by the spirit of Christmas, our special advent calendar provides a good deed suggestion for every day of the month…
Always, don’t miss our kindness nominations! Debbie Ratter’s (pictured) tale of seasonal kindness brought tears to our eyes.
This summer has been a bumper year for cruise ships, with visitor numbers breaking all records. Yet just how hospitable a place is Shetland from a visitor’s perspective?
For this issue of Shetland Life, we wanted to experience the local hospitality scene from a new perspective. The best way to do this, it seemed, would be to become a tourist for one day. Editor Genevieve White donned a disguise and took the streets of Lerwick. You can read all about her findings in this month’s magazine.
Summer’s a romantic time of year, isn’t it? Long walks on the beach, secluded picnics in the sun, and warm evenings that never seem to end. Romance is in the air, and this month Shetland Life is taking a look at love — celebrating it, reminiscing about it, and seeking it out in the first place. We’ve looked at love in Shetland from many different angles to make sure there’s something for everyone.
So whether you’re leafing through as you idly swipe away on Tinder, or you’re curled up with your sweetheart, read on and enjoy!
If you don’t believe in fate; read on. Dale Smith recounts a real-life love story of chance that might just change your mind.
The large framed photograph, currently hanging in Islesburgh Community Centre’s Room 9, had intrigued the staff for years. Not even the long-established employees knew who the two teenage girls pictured were. All that changed one day when Janice Drummond confirmed that one of the girls was her auntie.
What is a Shetlander?
As an incomer to these islands I’ve found that this question can result in heated debate. Some folk believe that a Shetlander can be anyone who lives here; others maintain that your family needs to have been in Shetland for at least two generations before you can go making any such claims for yourself. Then of course, there are all kinds of Shetlander definitions in between these two poles.
Genevieve White, Editor
This year’s Shetland Young Fiddler, Emma Leask, talks competitions and staying calm under pressure with Genevieve White.
As many readers will know, the Shetland Young Fiddler of the Year competition (held every April) is a major musical event in our calendar. Being pronounced the “Young Fiddler” seems to have the effect of catapulting the winner into Shetland musical royalty (a glance through the names of previous competition winners brings up household names such as Margaret Robertson, Maggie Adamson, Bryan Gear, Lois Nicol, Jenna Reid and Catriona Macdonald). Knowing that 14-year-old Emma Leask has won not only this prestigious prize but a host of other awards too, it is with a hint of trepidation I set off for our interview. Am I about to meet with a musical diva? Might she
disapprove of the fact I don’t know a reel from a jig?
Alex Garrick-Wright looks at the potential future new transport technologies can bring to the isles.
Autonomous electric vehicles on Shetland’s roads, and a bustling space industry centred around a satellite launching spaceport in Unst.
From a very young age, MICHAEL GRAY knew he wanted to sail. In the course of his 40-year career he travelled all over the world and became captain of the Earl of Zetland and the St Clair. He tells his life-story to Genevieve White.