Noo Dan

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Douglas Campbell Smith was born in Lerwick in 1928 and educated at Lerwick’s Infant and Central public schools and the Anderson Educational Institute. Conscripted into the R.A.F in 1946 he served in the United Kingdom and Egypt. On demobilisation in 1949 he joined the Zetland County Council as apprentice county sanitary inspector. After qualifying at Heriot-Watt College in Edinburgh, he served in the sanitary and environmental health departments for the next 40 years as assistant, depute and eventually director of environmental health for Shetland Islands Council until his retirement in September 1989. This is his first book, although he has become a familiar writer with many articles published in local journals, mainly relating to the links between Shetland and Norway during the Second World War. Here Douglas Smith outlines his family story with its ties to Lerwick and writes of growing up and his schooldays in the very different town landscape of the thirties and as a youngster in wartime Shetland when he witnessed the aftermath of a fatal mine blast and German Heinkels attacking a seaplane in the north harbour. Douglas Smith’s work gave him an unparalleled insight into the changing fortunes of the islands as conditions gradually improved over the years. It also involved him in many of the environmental issues raised by the arrival of the oil industry in the islands in the 1970s.