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Shetland Weekly prepares for launch

A new weekly paper for Shetland will hit the streets in less than three weeks.

Shetland Weekly, which is promising to reflect life across the islands in an “unmissable, modern format”, will be unveiled on March 24 after a year of planning.

It is being edited by former Halifax Courier and BBC journalist Richard Whitaker and has a staff of 15, which includes seven reporters and two photographers.

Richard said: “We’re very excited with the result. Now we look forward to chronicling island life on a weekly basis.

“We’re at the crossroads of the North Atlantic. There’s a lot happening here and we are determined to reflect that excitement in the paper.”

Published every Thursday, the title will rival the established Shetland Times, and is the brainchild of Malcolm Younger who is chairman of the new paper.

As well as community news the Shetland Weekly will include a free seven-day TV and radio guide, a regular column in dialect and contributions from writers across the islands.

There will also be a weekly women’s column and special pages for teenagers and younger readers.

The full-colour paid-for compact paper is expected to have upwards of 40 pages each week, but its price and initial print run is still under wraps.

Ahead of the launch the Shetland Weekly team held 20 roadshows across the Shetland isles, where staff met locals and asked for their ideas and comments.

Managing director Mike Sage said: “We are committed to being part of the Shetland community.

“We’ve already been out and about right across Shetland asking people what they want to see in the new paper. We will live up to our statement ‘Your paper, your community’.”