Unst, which has a population of only 600, is identified in UK Space Agency research as best site in UK for spaceport to launch satellites into orbit.

For the 600 residents of the most northern island in the Shetlands, it could be the most exciting thing since Unstfest – the annual shindig that this year offered, among its attractions, a scything demonstration over-16s could join.

The proposals are at an early stage, but if the Shetland Space Centre Ltd gets its way, Unst could become the UK’s premier spaceport with a local economy revitalised by blasting satellites into orbit.

The company was set up on the island, a breathtaking fragment nearer Norway than Edinburgh, after it was identified as the most promising launch site in Britain, in a study supported by the UK Space Agency.