Two brothers and a third partner have taken ownership of a Shetland fishing vessel as part of an ongoing generational shift within the whitefish sector.
Tom Robertson (33) and his brother Ross (30) along with George Jamieson (36), have acquired the 19 metre Copious (LK 985), which they have renamed Brighter Hope (LK-98). The name comes from a 45-foot boat of the same name which was acquired by George Jamieson’s grandfather John James Fullerton in the early 1950s.
‘I’m delighted to be handing the boat over to a new Shetland crew and to see her continuing as part of the Shetland fleet,’ said Mark Anderson, the previous owner of Brighter Hope.
‘We hope to start fishing within the next two weeks after doing some upgrades and sorting the paperwork. There are a lot of ifs and buts about buying a boat in the current climate, with the fuel situation, but we have no doubts and are thinking positively about the future,’ said new skipper Tom Robertson.
‘No-one said that fishing was going to be easy, but we’re really keen to get going – to make our own way in the industry – and to build a future for our own young families in the same way our fathers did for us.’
This isn’t a first for Shetland, as in December 2021 two other boats in the Shetland fleet, Sedulous (LK-308) and Defiant (LK-371), were taken over by young fishermen, with the former renamed Comrades.
‘It’s great to see family ownership continue in Shetland which gives hope for the security of fish catching in the islands. Shetland continues to buck the national trend of attracting young fishers and investment into the industry,’ commented Sheila Keith, Executive Officer at Shetland Fishermen’s Association.
The new owners are thankful to Marine Fund Scotland, LHD Ltd, Clydesdale Bank and the Shetland Fishermen’s Trust for making the purchase possible.