Scapa Flow Museum Part 1, The Pumphouse

Tom Muir, Engagement & Exhibitions Officer, Orkney Museum.

The new Scapa Flow Museum opens on Saturday, 2nd July 2022. The historic pumphouse building has been restored back to its original appearance and a new world class exhibition space created where the historical artefacts relating to Scapa Flow in two World Wars can be safely displayed in environmentally controlled galleries. Many artefcats have been conserved and are on display for the first time. In this blog we are looking at the Pumphouse itself and the exterior of the museum. The galleries will follow in Part 2. More work is planned to renovate the oil tank, romney hut and to conserve the large guns and steam crane that have stood outside for many years. Their condition has deteriorated due to exposure to the weather and salt in the atmosphere. The guns will be placed inside once they have been stabilised, to preserve them for future generations.

A frequently asked question is how far is the Scapa Flow Museum from the ferry terminal at Lyness? Here is your answer. The museum is the white building, just a short stroll from the ferry.
The view of the ferry terminal from the museum sign.
The pumphose was used to pump oil from the overground tanks (one of which remains) to the oil tenders that fueled the naval ships in Scapa Flow.
The chimneys used to vent the fumes from the boilers that were used to power the machinery. One of them has had to be replaced, as it was in an unsafe condition. The new one is an exact copy of the original.
The new build is the dark grey structure on the right. It has been carefully attached to the original pumphouse to prevent any damage to the historically important listed building.
Displays inside the pumphouse, showing a signal lamp.
The boilers.
An underfloor oil pipe, now left visible, gives a glimpse of what lies under your feet.
One of the propellers from HMS Hampshire, which was lost after hitting a mine off Marwick Head, Birsay, 5th June 1916. 737 men lost their lives, including Lord Kitchener, Secretary of State for War. It was illegally salvaged in 1983 and returned to Orkney by the Admiralty.
The steam powered crane on rails, which was used at Lyness, is another conservation project.
Original World War II boom defence nets.

Orkney.com have made a lovely wee film about the new museum, featuring our own Ellen and Jude who explain the process. Click on the link below.

https://www.orkney.com/news/scapa-flow-museum-orkney?fbclid=IwAR3pHP7-r16Gaq73iCFjUFF_qg3SZOLlg6sszhUVj8-KSxCiqNmGoNQ-ymw

To make a donation to any of the museums please follow the link and support us. Thank you.

One thought on “Scapa Flow Museum Part 1, The Pumphouse

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.