Joseph Leask

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Joseph Leask (b. 13 September 1797, Symbister, Whalsay, d. 16 November 1882, Lerwick) was a shipmaster, drapier, clothier and Lerwick Town Councillor.

Leask was the eldest son of Capt. Thomas Leask and Elizabeth Johnson. The family moved to Lerwick in 1806, and Joseph eventually worked for George Linklater, a merchant and magistrate in the town. Joseph began his own mercantile and shipping business in 1822. He became a town councillor in 1835 and served until 1850, then returned from 1862 until 1865. When it was decided that Shetland required municipal buildings in order to conduct official business, a Limited Liability Company was formed - Lerwick Town Hall Company Limited - and Leask became the chairman of the group.

Leask was an extremely successful businessman, and assembled a large landed estate, with its centre at Sand in [Sandsting]. He was extremely interested in Shetland’s maritime affairs, and gave lively evidence about them to Frank Buckland’s Herring Fishery Commission in the 1860s. At the end of his life he played an important part in the great herring fishery that had just arrived in Shetland, by assisting fishermen to buy the new large boats, and by providing accommodation for them at his premises at Garthspool. He died in Lerwick on 16 November 1882.

On 13 July, Leask fell from his horse and broke his leg.

Political Career

External Links

Provosts
Preceded by
Charles Ogilvy Jr
Senior Bailie
for Lerwick Town Council

1844-1847
Succeeded by
William Sievwright Snr
Preceded by
Charles Gilbert Duncan
Senior Bailie
for Lerwick Town Council

1862-1865
Succeeded by
Charles Gilbert Duncan
Leaders of the Lerwick Town Council
Councillors Arthur Edmondston (1818-1823) • Charles Ogilvy Snr (1823-1827) • William Spence (1827-1832) • Charles Ogilvy Jr (1832-1844) • Joseph Leask (1844-1847) • William Sievwright Snr (1847-1856) • Charles Duncan (1856-1862) • Joseph Leask (1862-1865) • Charles Duncan (1865-1874) • William Sievwright Jr (1874-1876) • Thomas Cameron (1876-1883) • John Robertson (1883-1890) • Charles Robertson (1890-1895) • John Leisk (1895-1904) • James Goudie (1904-1907) • Arthur Porteous (1907-1910) • Arthur Laing (1910-1913) • Robert Stout (1913-1915) • Peter Goodlad (1915-1920) • Robert D. Ganson (1920-1924) • James Laing (1924-1927) • John Sinclair (1927-1930) • William Sinclair (1930-1933) • Robert Ollason (1933-1936) • James A. Smith (1936-1941) • Magnus Shearer (1941-1946) • James Aitken (1946-1950) • Robert A. Anderson (1950-1953) • George Burgess (1953-1956) • William Conochie (1956-1959) • Robert Blance (1959-1962) • Harry Gray (1962-1965) • Andrew Nicolson (1965-1967) • Eric Gray (1967-1971) • Bill Smith (1971-1974) • James Taylor (1974-1975)