Swan Trust and Laurie Goodlad to offer Guided Lerwick Harbour Tours

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25 February 2020

The Swan Trust and well-known Shetland guide Laurie Goodlad are delighted to announce that they will be working together in May to offer guided half day Lerwick Harbour tours aboard The Swan, Shetland's traditional boat, for the first time. There will be four half day tours offered over two days, 19th & 22nd May 2020, starting at 9am and 5.30pm.

Laurie established Shetland with Laurie in May 2018 to share her passion for Shetland’s heritage, culture, archaeology and wildlife. Having this passion, and being a previous sail trainee aboard The Swan, she is delighted to work with the Swan Trust to develop and deliver this new half day experience: “I was delighted when Swan approached me to come onboard and offer these half-day tours. I have such fond memories of previous trips, including the 2004 Tall Ships Race and the Haugesund Jazz festival. Shetland’s maritime past holds a dear place in my heart, as the daughter of a fisherman I guess it’s in my blood. I regularly do walking tours around Lerwick for visitors and locals throughout the summer months and being on the Swan will allow us to see Lerwick from a unique perspective so I’m really looking forward to doing these tours.”

The combination of sailing Shetland’s historic boat, and Laurie’s unique insight into Shetland’s past and present, through the development of Shetland’s capital, will allow people to see Lerwick as never before.

The trip will detail how Lerwick grew from a small collection of trading booths and huts to the bustling commercial capital we see today, starting with the arrival of Dutch fishermen from the 1600s. Their arrival every June meant that locals flocked to Bressay Sound to trade with these foreign visitors. Laurie will introduce Lerwick at this time, and describe its continued growth, which saw it overtake Scalloway in size and influence by 1838. Passengers will also learn about the second herring boom of the 19th century, which saw boats like Swan take to the water in their hundreds, and Shetland’s modern fishing industry, which is still a mainstay industry in the islands. Laurie will also tell tales of the ‘smugglers’ who built the town’s foundations and point out Jimmy Perez’s house from the sea.

This is one of a number of partnerships The Swan Trust is developing to offer new experiences. Other partnerships in 2020 include working with Barry Nisbet, to offer his Sessions and Sail in the isles for the first time, and Sail Training Shetland and Shetland Amenity Trust to offer new youth sail training and Shetland Boat Week activities, which will also celebrate Scotland’s Year of Coasts and Waters.

Peter Campbell, Swan Trust Trustee: “We are delighted to be working with Laurie to offer this new experience in the isles. It is always great to see how our previous sail trainees develop and to now be working with one of them, especially in the start of our 25th year as a sail training vessel, is particularly fitting and special. Since being on The Swan at the age of 15, Laurie has been a great fan of the work that the Trust does and we are delighted to work with her in her capacity as a popular local tour guide. We are developing a number of partnerships locally and would be happy to hear from any other businesses, youth groups or community organisations who would like to work with us.”

To book a harbour tour, e-mail
Further information on all of the Swan Trust's 2020 public trips can be found here


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