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View of signal station from W.

C 73064

Description View of signal station from W.

Date 30/5/1996

Collection RCAHMS

Catalogue Number C 73064

Category Photographs and Off-line Digital Images

Copies SC 642848

Scope and Content World War II signal station, Wee Fea, Lyness, Hoy, Orkney Islands In World War II military activities in and around Scapa Flow generated a complex communications network of wireless, cabled and manual signals equipment associated with all three armed services. These ranged from traditional methods of intelligence-gathering, monitoring and signalling, as practised in World War I, to the sophisticated systems of detection and communication which developments in radio and radar offered. The Royal Navy possessed its own radar network (known as AES, Admiralty Experimental Stations) with at least one station in Orkney, on Ward Hill in South Ronaldsay, but its land-based communications operated mainly through a local group of Port War Signal Stations at Stromness (Ness Battery), Kirkwall (Rerwick Head), Stanger Head on Flotta and here at Lyness on Hoy, where a state-of-the-art signal station came into operation in 1943. This substantial signals and operations building occupies an elevated site on the upper slopes of Wee Fea, commanding a wide view of Lyness and the surrounding area. The main entrance was the high-level opening, visible at the left-hand end of this rear wall, which was approached by an external forestair, now gone. The boiler chimney is above the entrance, and the blocks on the flat roof-top area, which was used for lamp signalling, contained water tanks and a shelter. The mounting for a signalling lamp is visible, just to the right of the roof shelter. At the heart of the Orkney archipelago, Scapa Flow was the main fleet anchorage for the Royal Navy during both World Wars. Its vital importance led to the creation of one of the most concentrated defence networks in Britain. Source: RCAHMS contribution to SCRAN.

Permalink http://canmore.org.uk/collection/483069

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