Willie’s Tales & Travels

Regular price £15.99

These stories from Scalloway and beyond give us an insight into times past and a way of life much changed today. Local village characters feature throughout this new collection of reminiscences and we meet, among others, Chief Abadou, Peerie Meggie, the incredible inflating diver, and the flying farmer who built his own aircraft and invented a fish-gutting machine. The diverse tales feature hand grenades, vanishing cod, peerie Charlie’s peats and an assassination attempt. Willie also details the physical changes in Scalloway – with constant change and renewal being an underlying theme. Willie’s tales and the village’s changing faces are further brought to life with a fine selection of photographs from the renowned Scalloway photographer Clement J. Williamson – many of which are published here for the first time. Willie Smith was born in Nicolson’s House, West Shore, Scalloway in 1929 and spent his formative years there until the family moved to Meadowfield Road in 1945. On leaving school he trained as a joiner with his brother’s firm of Thomas Smith and Son and enjoyed the interesting and varied work almost as much as working alongside older men and listening to their tales of Wold War I and the merchant navy. His later working years were at West Side Fishermen, and in 1994 he retired. Since then he has visited friends in Canada, USA, Norway and Sweden, been involved in local affairs, and played an active part in the Shetland Bus Friendship Society and the new Scalloway Museum. Willie’s first writing efforts were encouraged by J. R. Nicolson, editor of Shetland Life magazine. His first book Willie’s War was published in 2004.