Latest harbour arrival raises eyebrows
by Alastair Hamilton -
Lerwick, always a busy port, has seen craft of every kind, but the latest arrival has caused some head-scratching on the pier head.
Over the decades, there has been a steady stream of ferries, fishing vessels, oil rig supply ships and cruise liners. The harbour has also welcomed scores of Tall Ships, naval craft including submarines and the occasional casualty of north Atlantic storms, such as a timber carrier with a dangerously shifted cargo.
The latest arrival is connected with a major expansion of facilities, in the form of the Laggan-Tormore gas plant, at the Sullom Voe terminal in Shetland's north mainland. Up to 1,400 personnel are to work on the project and a total of four barges, three in Lerwick and one in Scalloway, have been brought to Shetland to help accommodate them. The first three arrivals were utilitarian in appearance, but the latest to appear, the engineless (and thus well-named) Sans Vitesse – looks like an abstract zebra, or maybe a 21st century updating of the African Queen. It'll continue to catch the eye of locals – and, no doubt, bemuse visitors – for many months.