NE Scotland, Orkney & Shetland

Up Helly Aa fire festival lights up Shetland

Shetland's famous annual Up Helly Aa fire festival has been held.

Up Helly Aa is a spectacular event that celebrates Shetland's Viking heritage and culminates with the dramatic burning of a replica Viking galley.

Image caption The Jarl Squad annually shower the Viking galley with burning torches

It features a band of latter-day Viking warriors known as the Jarl Squad and attracts visitors from across the world.

The Vikings spend much of the day making public appearances.

The highlight of the event is the evening procession and galley burning.

Strong winds and heavy rain battered almost 1,000 torch-bearing guizers as they marched through the streets to pipe and brass-band music.

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