Fisheries college boss steps down –

Fisheries college boss steps down Published:  05 March, 2008

Peter Dryburgh

THE director of Shetland’s fishing and nautical college is

moving to pastures new on the Scottish mainland.

Peter Dryburgh will leave the helm at the NAFC Marine Centre, in Scalloway, at the end of this month to join the rest of his family in the Borders of Scotland.

Shetland-born Mr Dryburgh was appointed four years ago to help the college and its 60 staff face up to an uncertain future.

During his tenure, the 54-year-old has extended the college remit beyond fisheries, changing its name from the North Atlantic Fisheries College to suit its new role, which covered fields such as merchant navy cadet training.

He has also helped it towards a sound financial footing, having just

secured its core funding for the next financial year.

The college has just undergone a six month review by Professor Tony Hawkins for Shetland Islands Council, who wanted to make sure they were receiving value for the money they invest in the centre. Councillors will discuss the review later this month.

Mr Dryburgh said: “Having secured core funding for next year, and having guided the NAFC through this review process, I feel that is a good time for me to pass the responsibility for leading and driving the team forward over to a fresh pair of hands.”

The NAFC was set up to support Shetland’s indigenous fishing catching and farming industries, but has always needed to be heavily subsidised by the local authority.

The SIC and Shetland Development Trust supply two thirds of its £3 million a year running costs, the rest coming in as project finance from outside the islands.

Mr Dryburgh said the Professor Hawkins review had been very supportive of its work and would suggest some structural changes to help it achieve its full potential. However, a mechanism for long-term funding remains an elusive goal.

The main achievements during his tenure had been the re-branding exercise, the shellfish stock survey, the cadet programme, the marine mapping initiative and the jigfishing trials with the centre’s new boat Atlantia II, he said.

“This was a completely new departure for me and it’s been very interesting. Shetland is quite high-paced and I have enjoyed living here, though I won’t be missing the weather,” he added.

Councillor Iris Hawkins, who chairs the Shetland Fisheries Training Centre Trust which oversees the college, said she was disappointed to see Mr Dryburgh go and thanked him for his work.

“With funding in place for 2008/09 and the centre in a stable position, Peter has left a good legacy for his successor,” she said. is published by Special Publications. Special Publications also publish FISHupdate magazine, Fish Farmer, the Fish Industry Yearbook, the Scottish Seafood Processors Federation Diary, the Fish Farmer Handbook and a range of wallplanners.