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Archaeology Notes

Event ID 815079

Category Descriptive Accounts

Type Archaeology Notes


ND29SE 4 centred 2912 9464

A series of underground oil tanks have been cut into Wee Fea hill, the entrance to which is situated about 320m NW of the Signal Station building (ND29SE 2.00). The tanks have been tunnelled into the hillside and run internally in a southwesterly direction from the N entrance. Internal access tunnels have been provided throughout the system. About 30m NE from the N entrance is a water filter bed with sluice mechanism.

Little evidence could be seen among the newly cut tracks running NW from the Signal Station, of a small tramway which was built to the N entrance, to assist with the construction of the underground oil tanks.

Some equipment, such as a float gauge, winch and access ladder still survive in situ in the passageways and tunnels. A large air extractor unit built in Yard 23 by Musgrave and Co Ltd, Belfast of the 'Centrigrad' type, for foul air extraction is also still extant.

On the S-facing slopes of Wee Fea are several air vents along with the S entrance to the tunnels (ND 2854 9385).

Both entrances to the tunnels are protected by iron gates.

The tanks had a 100,000 ton capacity (101,000 tonnes) and were cut into the hillside to provide an alternative to the above ground tanks at Lyness in the event of air-raids.

Visited by RCAHMS (GS, SW, DE) [1996].

This facility is not noted on the 1972 edition of the OS 1:10,000 map. The map depicts what are presumably its surface buildings and structures around ND 2912 9465.

Information from RCAHMS (RJCM), 10 May 2006.

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