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Once, twice, three times a pony

Press Release   •   Dec 05, 2013 00:00 GMT

The world’s first Moonwalking Shetland pony is on a one-horse crusade to make Christmas jumpers cool.

Socks – who shot to fame earlier this year in an advert for mobile phone network Three – is once again set to strut his stuff on the beaches of Shetland in a brand new commercial that will be seen by millions of people on TV, in cinemas and online.

As part of the campaign, entitled ‘The Knitwear Before Christmas’, VisitScotland and Promote Shetland have teamed up with Three UK on a social media competition to offer two people an amazing break to Shetland to meet Socks face to face.

The adverts will run to 30 December. In accompanying print advertisements for Three, the diminutive stallion will be decked out in a specially knitted Fair Isle Christmas sweater created by Shetland designer Doreen Brown.

The adverts follow hot on the hooves of a VisitScotland marketing campaign to launch the Year of Natural Scotland in January 2013 that saw pictures of jumper-clad Shetland ponies Fivla and Vitamin become an overnight global sensation, with requests flooding in from some of the world’s biggest media networks.

Steve Mathieson, VisitScotland’s Island Manager, based in Lerwick, said: “The sight of Socks strutting his stuff on Shetland captured the imagination of millions and helped thrust the Northern Isles into the global spotlight. We are delighted to see that he is once again showing off not just his dance moves and new Fair Isle knitwear, but also the spectacular scenery of this unique and magical part of the world.”

The social media competition, which will kick off on 16 December, will invite fans of Socks to tweet pictures of themselves wearing their own festive knitwear to @ThreeUK and @VisitScotland using the hashtag #KnitwearBeforeXmas.

To view Socks in action, visit


For further information contact:

Tom Maxwell

Corporate Press Officer

Tel: 0131 472 2409

Out of hours media enquiries: 07699 766986

Notes to Editors:

  • Follow us on twitter: @visitscotnews
  • VisitScotland is Scotland’s national tourism organisation. Its core purpose is to maximise the economic benefit of tourism to Scotland. 
  • The organisation has three key roles:
  1. To market Scotland to all parts of the world to attract visitors
  2. To provide information – and inspiration – to visitors and potential visitors so they get the best out of a visit to Scotland
  3. To provide quality assurance to visitors and quality advice to the industry and partners to help the industry meet and strive to exceed customer expectations
  • VisitScotland works together with tourism businesses to make tourism a success for everyone and ensure the industry continues to grow.
  • The organisation employs 700 people and has offices and VisitScotland Information Centres across Scotland.
  • 2014 is the year Scotland welcomes the world, when it hosts the Glasgow Commonwealth Games, the Ryder Cup at Gleneagles and more than 800 Homecoming events throughout the country.For more information on Homecoming Scotland 2014, go to 
  • The VisitScotland Information Centre network is a unique face-to-face channel engaging with around five million visitors and locals each year. Everyone who uses a VisitScotland Information Centre goes on to spend an additional £5.35, generating over £24 million for Scotland’s economy. 
  • According to a recent Deloitte study, tourism employs 270,000 people in Scotland in 20,000 diverse businesses. The same study calculates that the industry contributes £11 billion annually (direct and indirect impact, including day visits) and supports around 10 per cent of employment in Scotland. Almost 16 million tourists take overnight trips to Scotland.
  • Where possible, a Gaelic speaker will be made available for broadcast interviews on request (Far an tèid iarraidh, agus far am bheil sin nar comas, bruidhinnidh neach le Gàidhlig aig agallamh)
  • For holiday information on Scotland go to
  • For information about business tourism in Scotland go to
  • For more information on VisitScotland’s annual review please go to