The vision is simple but effective: Brough Lodge, a category A-listed site, will be carefully restored and converted to serve as a mixed-use venue. The Brough Lodge Trust is a charity and all surplus revenue will be used to support aspects of Shetland’s heritage. In particular, the Trust intends to support the teaching of hand-knitting to school-children across Shetland, thus helping to secure these textile skills for the future.
Its historic atmosphere will be a focus for short courses and activities involving the arts (hand knitting, weaving, fiddle music, photography, drawing, painting) and environmental themes (geology, archaeology, wildlife/bird watching). We also intend to offer short-stay holiday accommodation, business retreats and guided tours.
The project will benefit the local community by maximising the potential for development of the tourist market. Up to six jobs will be created on an island where there are few employment opportunities and where economic diversification has been identified as essential for the island’s survival and future development.
In its new role, the building will also help to expand knowledge and understanding, both within Shetland and further afield, of Fetlar’s cultural heritage, which is a source of pride and confidence for the community. There is an opportunity to attract visitors, benefitting the whole island and possibly encouraging inward investment. Educational visits to Brough Lodge will also be encouraged and dedicated space and facilities will be set aside for them.