In our final sector spotlight on the Hospitality sector, we hear from Paul Doull who is the Chef and owner of the Foveran Restaurant. After leaving school at 16, Paul completed a two year further education course in hospitality. He then began working at the Foveran before moving onto The Albert Hotel, St Rognvald’s House, Flotta Oil Terminal and The Queen’s Hotel, before purchasing the Foveran in 2000 with his brother and his wife.
In the next Sector Spotlight on the Hospitality industry, we hear from Eilidh Gorman who is a receptionist at the Orkney Hotel in Kirkwall.
Eilidh’s first job was working in a café while still at school. She then became a Receptionist in a sports centre. After some time away in Edinburgh studying towards a degree in Performing Arts and Dance, she returned home at the start of the pandemic and looked for work locally, starting in her current role.
In our first Sector Spotlight on the Hospitality sector, we hear from Gary Sutherland who is the Head Chef and owner of Twenty One. Gary started his career as a Trainee Chef at Helgi’s during which time he also completed four years at college gaining qualifications in professional cookery. He was then offered a Head Chef job at the Standing Stones Hotel in Stenness at the age of 20 before working for Neil Stevenson at Archive Coffee and then setting up Twenty One.
In our final Sector Spotlight on the Food and Drink sector we hear from Jane Ellison from JP Orkney. As well as being the partner/owner of JP Orkney with her partner, Paul, she also works as a Home Economics Teacher at Stromness Academy.
After completing her GCSE’s, Jane spent time travelling in Malaysia before returning home to complete her A Levels. She then went to University where she achieved an HND in Hospitality Business Management, and a degree in Food Systems and Quality Assurance. Following graduation, she worked in restaurant management before undertaking a post-graduate qualification to become a teacher.
A move to Orkney saw Jane and Paul setting up their hospitality business offering guided tours, Orkney made produce and electric camper van hire.
Continuing our Sector Spotlight on the Food and Drink sector, we hear from Graham Bruce who is the Visits and Retail Operations Manager at Highland Park Distillery. Graham started his career with Boots in a temporary role over Christmas. He remained with the business for 10 years working in a variety of roles. Graham then started working at World Duty Free as part of the management team specialising in selling malt whisky. He then moved into roles in the financial sector before moving to Orkney with his family and taking up a role with Highlands and Islands Enterprise before moving into his current role at Highland Park.
In our next Sector Spotlight on the Food and Drink sector, we hear from Glynis Leslie who is the owner of Orkney Isles Preserves. On leaving school she studied languages in Aberdeen including French, German and a bit of Spanish. She worked in Germany, but hated city life and was very homesick. Eventually she gave up her course to come home to Shapinsay and work for her folks, who ran a shop and haulage business.
Glynis went on to marry and start a family. Looking for something for herself that would fit in with family life, she started making jams and chutneys for the local craft shop and since then the business has grown.
In our first Sector Spotlight on the Food and Drink industry, we hear from Callum MacInnes who is the Director of The Island Smokery. Callum started his career as an engineer working on military aircraft and equipment. He then moved to Orkney and changed direction buying and running shops before starting The Island Smokery.
In our final Sector Spotlight on Creative Industries, we hear from Carol Dunbar who is the Learning and Engagement Programme Manager at the Pier Arts Centre.
Following school, Carol studied Woven Tapestry and Printmaking at Edinburgh School of Art, spending 18 months working in Australia as a tapestry weaver after her graduation. When she returned to Scotland, she worked as a freelance artist and tutor. Throughout her career, she has spent time working for a local textile design company, delivered classes and workshops and working as a part-time lecturer at Orkney College UHI. She joined the Pier Arts Centre in 2005 as Education Officer.
In our next Sector Spotlight on Creative Industries, we hear from Isla Holloway who is the Marketing and Customer Service Manager at the Pier Arts Centre in Stromness.
Isla has a lifelong desire to go to Art School, which she achieved by attending Edinburgh College of Art to study Tapestry. Following her graduation, she worked as an artist in Edinburgh for a few years, supplementing her income with part-time work. On returning to Orkney, she worked in retail until the role of Marketing and Retail Development Officer came up at the Pier Arts Centre.
In today’s Sector Spotlight on Creative Industries, we hear from Alison Firth who is a Director at Ortak Ltd.
Alison left school at 16 and started working with Rolls-Royce as a secretarial trainee. From there, she went to Thurso College where she gained her HND in Business Studies. She continued to work with Rolls-Royce undertaking various roles which helped her develop different skills and undertake additional training. She then gained her degree through the Open University and trained to become a Chartered Accountant. In 2014, she invested in Ortak and became a Director of the business.
In our next Sector Spotlight is focusing on Creative Industries. Today we hear from Carrie Paxton, who is a Glass Artist based in St Ola, Kirkwall.
Carrie started her career as an apprentice in a design studio, she then undertook a degree and post-graduate qualifications as a mature student after starting her family. She now runs her own studio and produces a range of items as well as undertaking commissions for businesses and individuals.
For our next Sector Spotlight on the Creative Industries, we hear from Erica Drever who is an Enameller at Sheila Fleet’s.
After studying at Orkney College UHI, Erica was looking for a job and, as she has always admired Sheila Fleet’s jewellery, she phoned up the workshop and asked if there were any job opportunities. She was invited in for a trial and 10 years later she is still there.
In our next Sector Spotlight on Creative Industries, we hear from Olivia Yorston who is a Master Pattern Maker at Sheila Fleet Jewellery.
Olivia Left school at 15 with no formal qualifications and worked as a Florists for four years. Following a tour at Sheila Fleet’s workshop in Tankerness, she was offered a work trial with the business. Olivia started as a Craft Person before being offered the chance to develop further and train to become the Master Pattern Maker.
In our first Sector Spotlight on Creative Industries, we hear from Andrew Appleby who is the Managing Director of Fursbreck Pottery – also known as the Harray Potter.
Andrew has loved working with clay since childhood and an interest in archaeology helped him learn about Neolithic pottery. While at school he started worked for Peggy Foy Pottery. He then went to Art School and worked at another pottery that taught him about rapid production. He moved to Orkney in 1975, and set up his pottery at Fursbreck Farm. He moved to his current premises at the old Harray School three years later and has worked there ever since. He now employs two apprentices who work alongside him and his son.
In our final Sector Spotlight on the Third Sector, we hear from Samantha Stringer, a Volunteer Development Worker at Voluntary Action Orkney.
Samantha has undertaken various jobs throughout her career, including working as a Primary School Teacher, a Student Recruitment Officer and as a Countryside Ranger. Each job has taught her new skills and led her working with different teams, all of which has helped her as she progresses.
In our next case study for the Third Sector, we hear from Debbie Ralph who is a Children and Young People Support Worker with Women’s Aid Orkney. Debbie began her career as a Telephonist before going into nursing and care work. She then worked as a self-employed Aromatherapist and Reflexologist. Following a move to Orkney, she worked for various third sector organisations before moving into her current role.
In our first Sector Spotlight on the Third Sector we hear from Nikki Coghill, who is a Service Support Supervisor at Age Scotland.
Nikki left school when she was 17 and got a job in a local care home as a relief Social Care Assistant. She then undertook a Modern Apprenticeship, working towards her SVQ2 in Social Care. She also obtained her HNC and SVQ3 in Social Care.
After working in a care home for a few years, an opportunity came up at Age Scotland Orkney, where Nikki has developed her skills in a variety of roles and through professional development.
In our final Sector Spotlight on the Emergency Services, we hear from Simon Hay who is a Police Sergeant with Police Scotland in Kirkwall.
Simon left school at the end of fourth year and began working as a carpet fitter before taking on a seasonal role cutting grass during the summer. He then started working at the Pickaquoy Centre and during his time there, a work colleague suggested he apply to become a Police Officer.
Since joining the police, Simon has worked in Caithness and Orkney in both uniformed and plain clothed roles.
In our next Sector Spotlight on the Emergency Services, we hear from Graham Campbell who is the Second Mechanic on the RNLI Lifeboat based in Kirkwall.
The RNLI is a charity that saves lives at sea, powered almost entirely by donations and with the help of their volunteer lifeboat crews and lifeguards. The role of volunteers in supporting the lifeboat service is vital to coastal communities like Orkney.
Volunteering with the RNLI is something that Graham has wanted to do since he was a young boy. Before joining the lifeboat crew he served with the local Territorial Army (TA) as a Reservist Soldier for nine years. After he had served his time with the TA, he joined the RNLI Kirkwall Lifeboat crew.
In our first Sector Spotlight on the Emergency Services, we hear from Angus Young who has worked in the Fire Service for almost 29 years and has served in various roles throughout. He was offered the opportunity to take up his current role due to his experience in youth engagement.
In our final Sector Spotlight on Education, we hear from Joanne Porter who is the Associate Professor in Marine Science at Heriot Watt University Orkney.
Childhood holidays to the seaside sparked an interest in the natural world which a Tutor at Sixth Form College recognised, encouraging Joanne to study Marine Biology at University. This led to her undertaking her PhD and working in research before undertaking her current role as a member of academic staff heading up a research team.
Continuing our Sector Spotlight on Education, today we hear from Wendy Bowen, who is the Head Teacher of Papdale Primary School.
Wendy became a Primary School Teacher straight out of University, working in various schools in Caithness and the Highlands, eventually working her way up to Head Teacher. She came to Orkney in 2014 as Head Teacher of Sanday Junior High School, before moving to Papdale in 2019. While still a school pupil and as a student she undertook a variety of part-time jobs including working in shops, at Caithness Glass and with the Tourist Board.
In our next Sector Spotlight on Education, we hear from Susan Mackay who is a Lecturer in Business Studies and Inclusive Practice at Orkney College UHI.
Susan started her career in hospitality, working in hotels and bars across the UK from the age of 19. She moved to Orkney in 2003 and managed a couple of hotels here, before changing career. After starting and running her own businesses she joined Orkney College UHI as an SVQ Assessor, Short Course Tutor and relief Lecturer in 2012. Throughout her career Susan has undertaken additional qualifications to help her take on new roles, most recently completing her BA (Hons.) Business Management alongside her full-time work.
In our next Sector Spotlight on Education, we hear from Elsa Cox who is Orkney Development Manager for Robert Gordon University.
Elsa studied Archaeology at Glasgow University before undertaking a Post Graduate Diploma in Museum and Gallery Studies at St Andrews University. She has worked in museums across Scotland, as well as in South Georgia, an island in the southern Atlantic Ocean. While not connected to her experience as a Curator, her current role combines many of the transferrable skills she has developed throughout her career so far.
In our first Sector Spotlight on Education we hear from Stewart McPhail who is the Head Teacher of Sanday Junior High School.
Stewart went to university and got an Honours Degree in Geology before working abroad in the oil industry. He then qualified as a teacher and spent time as a supply teacher while continuing to work in the oil industry. Stewart then moved into full time teaching and now works as Head Teacher at Sanday Junior High School.