Unst Community Council   Unst Community Council
Unst Community Council

Minutes of the meeting held on Monday 21st  October 2019

at 6.30  pm in the Baltasound School, Music Huts



Claire Priest, Chaired meeting

John Peterson

Janice Priest

Gordon Thomson

Julie Thomson

Alec Priest, North Isles Councillor (ex-officio)



PC Angela Manson

Frank Strang, Shetland Space Centre

Frances Browne, Community Involvement and Development Officer

Josie McMillan, Clerk


01/10/19   Apologies:

Patrick Fordyce, Chair

David Cooper

Caroline Hunter

Hazel Spence

Duncan Simpson, North Isles Councillor (ex-officio)

Ryan Thomson, North Isles Councillor (ex-officio)

Michael Duncan, Community Council Liaison Officer


13/10/19   A.O.C.B.  

13/10/19.1  Police Report

PC Angela Manson said that there had been no reported crime in Unst from 1st September to date.  She said there was no further information about the damage to the pumps at P&T Coaches.  PC Manson was asked if the break in to the donation box at the Viking Long House/Skidbladner had been reported to the Police.  This had happened in August, a tour guide reported it to Gordon. He notified Shetland Amenity Trust who already knew about it.  PC Manson had not heard about this, but said that she would get back to the Community Council after she had checked up on it.  101 is the phone number to contact the Police. 

02/10/19   Minutes from the Last Meeting

The minutes from the meeting held on Monday 9th September 2019 were proposed by Gordon and seconded by Janice.

03/10/19   Declaration of Interest

There were declarations of interest for agenda item 7 – Application for Donation. 

Janice Priest is on the Uyeasound Hall Committee.  Julie Thomson is a member of the Baltasound SWI.

04/10/19   Matters Arising from last minutes        

13/01/19.6 White Wife Statue

Gordon said that the information board explaining about the White Wife has not been put up yet.

3/07/19.1  Review of Streetlighting Reduction Policy, Gutter Street and East Road

The questionnaire asking residents whether they want the street lights re-instated has been sent out.  Once the result of this is known the street lights will be re-instated if that is the chosen option.

13/07/19.5  Easting Kirkyard

Yvonne Scott, SIC Burial Services Officer, has confirmed the grass at Easting Kirkyard will be cut soon.

12/07/19.1  Shetland Community Benefit Fund (SCBF)

Gordon said that there is a meeting on Wednesday 23rd October, but he will be unable to attend.  He said that the Viking Energy project’s bid for a Contract for Difference from the Scottish Government had been unsuccessful,  but Viking Energy remains committed to the project. 

12/07/19.2  Hermaness Project/Road

Graham Neville, Scottish Natural Heritage, replied to our email and said that SNH did not get Natural and Cultural Heritage Funding (NCHF), despite receiving an offer from the Rural Tourism Infrastructure Fund (RTIF), they have had to assess the affordability of the project to SNH in the absence of grant funding.  Mr Neville explained that SNH do not have the funds to proceed without NCHF grant funding this year. Therefore, last week SNH reluctantly decided, with their partners, to withdraw the project from this round of RTIF.  They will resubmit in a future round once the situation with NCHF is clearer.

13/05/19.3  Road Matter

Neil Hutcheson, SIC Roads, replied to our concerns about the Westing Road and has asked SIC engineers for it to be checked and repaired where required.  There were concerns raised about the weeds growing along Gutter Street in Baltasound.  The SIC replied by saying that due to budgetary restraints they are unable to keep on top of the weeds, and one treatment in the worst affected areas is all that the budget will allow.

12/09/19.2  Community Council Training - Clerk

The Clerk attended this training, it was very useful. There were several templates for agendas, minutes and financial record keeping circulated and discussed.   These can be used or you can carry on existing using your existing documents.  It was agreed to use existing documents.              

05/10/19   Unst Partnership (UP) Update. 

Gordon explained that UP directors held a very successful Participatory Budgeting event last month in the Baltasound Hall.  Seven groups applied for a share of £3,000, with a maximum award to each group of £500.  After everyone had voted six groups all got £500.  These were:- Ability Shetland Sports Group; Unst Boating Club; Unst Junior Netball Development Group; Unst Senior Citizen’s Lunch Club; Unst Youth Centre Trust and Uyeasound Hall.  Gordon said that the next Skip day is Saturday 2nd November.  UP is also planning a hall sale of bigger recycled items on Friday 1st November, in the Uyeasound Hall.  There is a meeting of UP directors on Wednesday 23rd October.  Hazel Spence has resigned as the UCC representative, Julie has agreed to replace Hazel on the board.

06/10/19   Community Involvement Update

Frances explained the first meeting with Greg Maitland, Harbour Master and Port Operations, and Andrew Inkster, Port Operations, had been positive.  They are going to look at options before the next meeting.  One of the option discussed was having a lighter summer pontoon which would use the existing stairway and would be removed over the winter.  Frances said that next year there are between 9 and 11 cruise ships visits planned.  Ports and Harbours have to be notified when cruise ship visits are planned and use the Baltasound Pier. 

07/10/19   Application for Donation

07/10/19.1  Baltasound SWI - Bairns Christmas Tree Party

It was agreed to give a donation of £390 towards the bairns Christmas Tree party.

07/10/19.2  Uyeasound Hall Committee – Bairns Christmas Tree Party

It was agreed to give a donation of £144 towards the bairns Christmas Tree party.

08/10/19   Application for planning

Planning Ref:



To construct an interpretation centre and toilets at Hermaness NNR entrance


Interpretive Centre, Shore Station, Burrafirth, Unst SHETLAND


Mr Juan Brown

Date of Consultation:

27 September 2019

It was agreed to put in a comment for this application.  Unst Community Council would be keen to see this project going ahead with the understanding that the roads infrastructure is able to cope with the possible increase in traffic.

Claire and Patrick attended the ASCC Planning training in Lerwick.  Claire said that it had been very worthwhile training.  The Community Council has to be consulted as one of the statutory groups and it is important to get the Community Council’s view put forward.  Claire said that it is useful to the planning department if we put in comments e.g. what we like/do not like in an application.

09/10/19   Community Council Finances

Spending is in line with budget figures.  There is still some funding available for community groups.  This will be advertised. 

10/10/19   Shetland Space Centre (SSC) – Frank Strang

Frank Strang said that it was two and a half years since he first attended the Community Council with the plans for the Shetland Space Station.  He said that at the beginning of the project Unst had been kept out of the original bidding process for the UK Vertical Launch Project funding but SSC had come a long way since then.  Mr Strang said that it has been a difficult fight to get to the stage that SSC is at today, but also an easy fight as he wholeheartedly believes that Unst is the right site.  In the past two and a half years the SSC team has lobbied the Scottish Parliament and the UK Government, they have welcomed many delegations from various interested industry bodies to Unst and have met with space industry representatives all over the world .  Mr Strang is very grateful for the support that SSC has received from the local community,  Shetland Islands Council and the local MSP and MP.   Mr Strang explained that the environmental assessments have been done.  One of the things to be done soon is community engagement, giving local people an opportunity to ask questions and voice concerns.

11/10/19   National Transport Strategy Consultation – Michael Craigie

This consultation is very general.  There was a discussion about fixed links, members asked if there had been any progress made with this.  Alec said that the plans from the Scottish Parliament are that Scotland is to be carbon neutral by 2035, the existing ferry infrastructure would not meet these regulations. 

Alec left the meeting at 8.30pm.

12/10/19   Draft  Shetland Islands Regional Marine Plan consultation

There was a meeting about this in Mid Yell last month.  This was noted.

13/10/19   A.O.C.B.

13/10/19.1  War Memorials from Uyeasound Kirk

There was a discussion about the War Memorials which have been moved from the Uyeasound Kirk to the Baltasound Kirk.  The Uyeasound Hall committee are keen to have them returned and displayed in the Uyeasound Hall.  The Uyeasound Kirk is a listed building which is being delisted before it is sold.  A suggestion was that the Hall committee write to the Kirk Session and ask that the War Memorials are returned and displayed locally in the Uyeasound Hall.  Frances offered to help with this. 

13/10/19.2  Flu Jabs

Flu jabs are now given by NHS Nursing teams from the mainland.  This will be advertised once the Local Health Centre has been told when this has been arranged.

14/10/19   Date of next meeting

The next meeting date will be set on Monday 2nd December 2019 at 6.30 pm in the Baltasound School.

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