Mainland, Shetland

Coordinates: 60°18′N 1°18′W / 60.30°N 1.30°W / 60.30; -1.30
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Scottish Gaelic nameMòr-thìr
Old Norse nameMegenland
Meaning of nameOld Norse for 'mainland'
The cliffs of Eshaness, North Mainland
The cliffs of Eshaness, North Mainland
Mainland is located in Scotland
Mainland shown within Scotland
OS grid referenceHU414553
Coordinates60°18′N 1°18′W / 60.30°N 1.30°W / 60.30; -1.30
Physical geography
Island groupShetland
Area96,879 ha (374 sq mi)[1]
Area rank3 [2]
Highest elevationRonas Hill 450 m (1,476 ft)
Sovereign stateUnited Kingdom
Council areaShetland Islands
Population rank2 [2]
Population density19.41 people/km2[1]
Largest settlementLerwick

The Mainland is the main island of Shetland, Scotland. The island contains Shetland's only burgh, Lerwick, and is the centre of Shetland's ferry and air connections.


It has an area of 374 sq mi (970 km2), making it the third-largest Scottish island and the fifth largest of the British Isles after Great Britain, Ireland, Lewis and Harris and Skye. Mainland is the second most populous of the Scottish islands (only surpassed by Lewis and Harris), and had 18,765 residents in 2011[3] compared to 17,550 in 2001.[5]

The mainland can be broadly divided into four sections:

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Haswell-Smith (2004) p. 406
  2. ^ a b Area and population ranks: there are c. 300 islands over 20 ha in extent and 93 permanently inhabited islands were listed in the 2011 census.
  3. ^ a b National Records of Scotland (15 August 2013). "Appendix 2: Population and households on Scotland's Inhabited Islands" (PDF). Statistical Bulletin: 2011 Census: First Results on Population and Household Estimates for Scotland Release 1C (Part Two) (PDF) (Report). SG/2013/126. Retrieved 14 August 2020.
  4. ^ Haswell-Smith, Hamish (2004). The Scottish Islands. Edinburgh: Canongate. ISBN 978-1-84195-454-7.
  5. ^ General Register Office for Scotland (28 November 2003) Occasional Paper No 10: Statistics for Inhabited Islands Archived 2008-04-21 at the Wayback Machine. Retrieved 9 July 2007.
  6. ^ "Shorewatch". Archived from the original on 3 March 2016. Retrieved 3 June 2008.

External links[edit]