In which DI Perez tells ‘Tosh to ‘clean up the Lodberries’
There will be those of you who will not have seen the TV crime drama ‘Shetland’ featuring the redoubtable Dougie Henshall as detective Jimmy Perez. The storylines are the usual but what sets it apart is that it is set in Shetland and shows off the scenery of these isles in glorious colour. Whilst most of the interior shots and some of the outdoor are filmed in and around Glasgow, much of the filming takes place in Shetland itself – including the shots of ‘Jimmy’s’ house which in real life is The Lodberries situated right at the end of Commercial Street. You can see why the series director chose this house as it is very picturesque, standing as it does with its knees in the water. No wonder then that it is the most photographed place in Shetland and even we had to succumb to going and gawping at someone’s quite modest property.
Next to the house is the tiny but perfect Bain’s Beach which has also featured in the show.
Leaving DI Perez instructing DS Tosh to clear the lodberries from Bain’s Beach we went in search of an older Lerwick. The town began life in the 1600’s when it was reckoned to be a lawless place full of debauchery and crime. At least that is what the good people of Scalloway, then the capital of Shetland, said. But for the Dutch fishermen venturing here in search of Herring it provided safe waters.
By the 18th century Lerwick had become the rendevous point for Dutch fishermen at the beginning of their summer fishery and in its heyday up to 900 boats could be moored in the quays offloading herring to be salted by a workforce mainly comprising of women for shipment around the world.
Today you would be hard pressed to find a fresh fish anywhere in Lerwick, the main trade now being the service of the offshore oil industry. But that too will decline and perhaps all that will be left is the increasingly bizarre murders which seem to take place on Shetland every year requiring the skill and experience of Jimmy Perez to solve.
For us it was time to leave the hustle and bustle of Lerwick, with its 7,500, mostly, law abiding inhabitants behind and head off into the northernmost land in the UK.