By Promote ShetlandMarch 6th 2023

Artist and designer Cheryl Jamieson was born and raised in Unst, Shetland’s most northerly isle, where she still lives and runs her business Glansin Glass. She feels fortunate to be surrounded by beautiful landscapes and a supportive community. Here are 5 things Cheryl loves about living in Unst.

1. Community

We’re lucky to have a great community spirit in Unst and it makes it a great place to live.

Whether it’s seen in the big events such as UnstFest, where the whole island comes together to put on a week-long summer festival, or just knowing that if your car breaks down then the next person to drive past will stop and help, you know that there always someone there for you.

It’s a brilliant place to raise a family as you know they’re safe.

2. Up Helly Aa

There are various Up Helly Aas, our famous fire festivals, around Shetland between January and March where we celebrate our Viking heritage and fantastic community spirit.

We are lucky to have two Up Helly Aas in Unst – Uyeasound and Norik (Norwick).

The festivals are another example where the community pulls together and they help build tradition and create a sense of belonging.

I am part of a squad with a group of women, and our planning meetings through January and February are a great way to help us through the cold, dark winter.

3. Spectacular environment

In Unst we’re surrounded by the most stunning scenery. I grew up near Norwick beach, and it was our playground. We completely took it for granted as children, but now as an adult I can appreciate how special that was.

Now I live near the Easting beach, and love the walk over the hill, down to the sandy shores. I’m lucky that I can express my love of the Shetland landscape through my work, and that I’m never short of inspiration.

4. Quirky events

The various events that happen throughout the year help build community spirit in a place like Unst.

We are adept at creating our own entertainment and organising events to bring people together, and many community groups use this as a chance to raise funds.

This could be the Uyeasound Hall putting on a chip night, run by volunteers, where you’ll find the tastiest fish supper in Shetland, or the Chapel Sale of Work, basically a jumble sale and auction to raise money for the local church – where six eggs might set you back £8, and you can get a chest of drawers for a fiver!

5. Creativeness

Shetlanders are certainly a unique breed, and I think islanders share certain traits. Down through the ages they have had to be resourceful, inventive, and resilient.

Those attributes collectively make Unst an amazing place to have a creative business as folk appreciate what you do.

I feel hugely blessed that I can offer customers the chance to explore their own creativeness through our glass classes. I’ve seen the joy it brings them, how it can offer relaxation for some, or an enjoyable family experience for others, and the fact that I played some part in that makes my job the best job in the world!

Discover more about why Shetland is a fantastic place to live.