Lerwick town centre now has three new areas for people to meet, take a break, sit down and relax. Town centre businesses, through Living Lerwick have provided five large planters, four of which have built in seating.
Research done at the beginning of the Living Lerwick business improvement district project revealed that businesses and customers wanted more amenities in the area. This project is intended to provide that.
The changes which occurred in Harrison Square left it with no obvious purpose, so Living Lerwick decided to work towards providing something of practical use, which is why two planters have been put there.
There have also been issues with cars parking right in front of the Shetland Times Bookshop doorway. This caused problems for people with wheelchairs or pushchairs accessing or leaving the shop. The planters and seating will solve that problem.
The town centre business owners strongly felt that something was required in memory of the late Harry Jamieson, who was instrumental in setting up Living Lerwick as well as being a very respected figure in the town centre. A planter has been provided outside Harry’s beside the existing benches on Commercial Street with a plaque provided free of charge by N-Graved Shetland which says “In fond memory of Harry Jamieson 1943 – 2015, A friendly, hard-working, community-spirited and successful businessman. He had endless energy and spent it well. From Lerwick Town Centre businesses through Living Lerwick”
Christena Irvine, manager at Living Lerwick said: “We managed to get partial funding from the Community Development Fund for the planters and asked the SIC Bridges project to design and make them. Ryan Jamieson and the students at SIC Bridges have done a fantastic job. They designed them from scratch and constructed them to a very high standard. They are also sturdy and able to stand up to the Shetland weather. The planters currently have Christmas trees in them but we plan to plant them up with different things at different times of the year.
Bridges and COPE worked in partnership on this to provide young people with the opportunity to be involved in a practical based project. The partnership has been successful due to the appropriate environment provided by COPE, along with the knowledge, expertise and support of Bridges staff. The practical skills learned by the young people has helped improve their confidence and knowledge, which will increase their prospects of gaining employment in the future. So, the project has benefitted all concerned”