I don’t often speak personally about my thoughts and feelings on this blog but today I feel I should.
Today I have been thinking a lot about the families affected by yesterdays awful tragedy in Oslo. Where I live in the Shetland Islands we have a very strong connection to Norway which goes back many years. Being up here in the far north of the British Isles we are closer in distance to Norway than we are to most parts of the UK and so we see Norway as our nearest neighbours.
The impact of this horrible event is felt all the more keenly here at the moment as our islands pay host to the Tall Ships Races. 53 tall ships are currently visiting for a weekend of fun and festivities before the ships race off to Stavanger in Norway on Monday. Of those 53 ships, 11 are from Norway and are crewed by young Norwegian sail trainees.
As a mark of resepect for the families affected by this atrocity all flags in Shetland have been flying at half mast, including those on all the beautiful ships.
It is a day I will remember, sadly, for a very long time.