Lauren is Project Manager on the Promote Shetland contract, based in our Lerwick Office. She has a background in Archaeology and has previously worked in heritage and arts marketing. Outside of work she can be found playing cornet with the Lerwick Brass Band, creating traditional teddy bears in home craft studio, or, more often than not, roaming about the Shetland landscape on her Icelandic horse.
We asked Lauren a series of fun questions, so you can get to know her a little better.
1.Tell us a surprising fact about yourself?
I’ve got a PhD in Archaeology.
2. What are your top 3 life highlights?
- Our wedding day (it was awesome, we had a steam train).
- Moving to Shetland
- Buying my horse.
3. Have you ever been told you look like a celebrity?
Erm, no? My husband did once say I looked a bit like Mei from My Neighbour Totoro. I’m not sure it was a compliment… Does that count?
4. What did you want to be when you grew up?
A doctor (a GP, to be specific). Then I saw Time Team and realised that digging about in mud was a job and you could get paid for it, so I changed my mind and went for Archaeology instead (although I couldn’t quite let go of the desire to have the title). Ending up in marketing was sort of a happy accident.
5. What are your three most overused words/phrases?
‘What are we having for dinner tonight?’
‘No! Don’t eat that!’ (To the dogs/horses)
6. What’s the coolest thing you’re working on right now?
That’s really hard – pretty much everything about working on the Promote Shetland contract is cool. Probably some of the resources we're developing with local community groups to help them attract new residents and businesses to their area. Our rural communities are such an important part of what makes Shetland such a friendly and interesting place to live and work, and it's really satisfying to be able to work directly with them to help them tell the story of what makes their community special and to help them bring new families in to make sure these places continue to be vibrant and sustainable.
7. What is your favourite aspect of your job?
I get to spend all day thinking of ways to tell stories about how cool Shetland is. What’s not to love about that?
8. If a friend came to visit you in Shetland, what would you take them to see?
That depends on the friend – for my archaeological friends places like Stanydale, Benie Hoose, Pinhoulland and some of the broch sites. For my horsey friends I tend to try and take them on of my favourite hacks (maybe Minn Beach, or the track out to Symbister from Houss), other friends I’ll take them on a favourite walk, for a run up to Frankies, for scones and Bonhoga or on a tour of the cafes in town (you can never have too much cake). Oh, and I’ll usually try and fit in a visit to Mareel too.
9. What is the most important personal attribute that you bring to your job?
Probably strategic thinking and the ability to focus on delivering detail while always keeping an eye on how it fits into the bigger picture.
10. What technology innovation made the most impact on your life?
This is probably a cliché, but the internet. Putting aside the fact that most of my working life has revolved around it, I can’t imagine not being connected to people and information in the way I am now.
11. What would you name your boat if you had one and why?
I’m really not good with boats… I think the others have already used the best comedy boat names I can find on Google, so I’ll go for something sentimental instead and say I’d name it Esja after my horse.
12. How would you convince someone to visit the place you love the most?
Well, given that my favourite place ever is Shetland, and that is exactly what I get paid to do for a job these days, this shouldn’t be too tricky to answer! Truthful, authentic stories work best. It’s not hard to find moments of inspiration and beauty in Shetland, and I’ve found all I have to do is share those with my friends and family, and they’re queuing up to come and stay. Of course, it helps when we say we have a spare room too!