Orkney Wireless Museum, Kirkwall

4.6
#5 of 6 in Museums in Mainland
The Orkney Wireless Museum in Kirkwall, Orkney houses a collection of domestic and military wireless equipment. It developed from the private collection of the late Jim MacDonald from St Margaret's Hope and marks the importance of wireless communications in Orkney during World War II.
The Orkney Wireless Museum is located at Kiln Corner, Kirkwall in Orkney and is run on an entirely voluntary basis. It is registered as a Charitable Company. The Friends of the museum, from all over the world, help raise funds for the museum. The local branch of the society organises volunteers to man the Museum every day of the season, from April to September.
The displays and photographic archive bear testament to the strategic and military importance of Orkney during World War II. In the collection there is much reference to the Home Fleet in Scapa Flow, Orkney. The museum demonstrates the importance of wireless communications and Radar to the civilian and military populations.
The Amateur Radio call sign GB2OWM is frequently activated at the museum. During the Orkney Science Festival every September, worldwide contacts are made and QSL cards are subsequently exchanged with the stations contacted.
The museum has an extensive collection of early domestic radio and wartime communications equipment. Most of the equipment was built in the UK and USA. The museum also houses early advertising and posters. An archive of photographs depicts wartime forces and includes coverage of the building of the Churchill Barriers which were built primarily as naval defences to protect the anchorage at Scapa Flow.
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Orkney Wireless Museum Reviews
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TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5
139 reviews
Google
4.8
TripAdvisor
  • Went here 30th September,last day before it closed for season,it’s an absolutely brilliant museum full of very interesting items,it was made all the more special because the man in charge of the museu...  more »
  • This museum was built on the personal collection of Jim MacDonald in 1983. It moved to its present location in 1997. As a trained electrician, Mr. MacDonald was fascinated by wireless equipment and co...  more »
Google
  • I'm not that into museums (or wirelesses) but this place is fantastic. Knowledgeable and enthusiastic volunteers showed us some great stuff, tailoring info to the interests/questions of my three kids (aged 7, 9 and 11). We got to try out old games, Morse code and some other historic machines. Excellent.
  • Brilliant if you like this sort of thing. It is what it says on the tin ;lots of old radios with a few other pieces like an old computer game thrown in for good measure. There's also quite a lot about the wars and communication equipment of the time. You can even touch the (oh so smooth!) knobs! Allow 30-60 minutes depending upon your level of interest.
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