FRIDAY AFTERNOON Heritage management I



Chaired by Prof Jane Downes, Director of the UHI Archaeology Institute & Trustee of Stromness Museum



Animating Scapa 100 screening

To commemorate the scuttling of the German High Seas Fleet in 1919, West Side Cinema and Stromness Museum ran a series of community workshops during Stromness Shopping Week with London based animator Lizzy Hobbs.

Using themes such as Underwater, Life on board, Scuttle and Salvage, fifty participants created cut-out animation focusing on the more playful aspects of this remarkable incident.



The Wrecks of Scapa: A Digital Exploration

Keynote Speaker PROF CHRIS ROWLAND – Director of 3DVisLab, Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art and Design, University of Dundee

This talk will explore how digital survey techniques have been used to capture 3D images of the German WWI wrecks that remain in Scapa Flow. The first recorded digital survey of the wrecks, led by Ian Oxley, took place in 2000-2002 (ScapaMAP) with a follow up in 2006 (ScapaMAP2). Subsequent surveys (ADUS 2006 and ShipTime 2017) have gathered much higher resolution images that provide an opportunity to understand how the wrecks are changing over time. New techniques (Structure from Motion) are now revealing much greater detail than ever before, allowing us to pay virtual visits to the wreck sites to gain a better understanding of their condition, without getting our feet wet!

Ladies looking over the side-2


Investigating and Protecting the Wrecks of Scapa Flow

PHILIP ROBERTSON – Deputy Head of Designations (Inventories and Marine) Historic Environment Scotland

Over the last hundred years, the wrecks of the German High Seas Fleet have seen radical changes in how they are valued. Once weapons of mass destruction, after scuttling the fleet became a salvage resource; now the wrecks are recognised as a nationally important heritage asset and enjoyed as a diving amenity that contributes jobs and revenue to the Orkney economy.

This paper describes efforts to investigate, protect and promote understanding about the wrecks and other important aspects of Scapa Flow’s wartime underwater heritage, while exploring some of the key challenges and opportunities as we look to the next 100 years.

15:30-15:55pm Refreshment Break

Salvage party-2


Scapa Flow Museum Refurbishment Project

RACHEL BOAK & JUDE CALLISTER – Orkney Arts, Museum & Heritage

The Scapa Flow Museum at Lyness is undergoing a major refurbishment project, with funding from Orkney Islands Council, the Heritage Lottery Fund, Historic Environment Scotland, Highlands and Islands Enterprise, Museums Galleries Scotland and the Orkney LEADER fund. 

The project involves the restoration of the historic buildings, the enhancement of interpretation and displays, and the creation of a new building housing an exhibition space, café, toilet facilities and information areas. New display cases, lighting and environmental controls will allow us to display objects which have never been on show before. Completion of the refurbishment project is expected in 2020. 

The Museum tells the story of Scapa Flow and its strategic importance as the Royal Navy’s principal fleet anchorage during the two world wars. This paper will briefly explore the history of the Lyness naval base and the wider historic landscape, give an overview of the wartime collections held by Orkney Islands Council, and look ahead to the new Scapa Flow Museum.




Caring for metal objects 

DARREN COX – Conservator, Darren Cox Clocks & Scientific Instruments

Darren Cox is a metals conservator who lives and works in Orkney.  This will be a short talk on how to care for metal objects that may have been subjected to the marine environment.  As well as practical advice there will be photos of restored museum objects showing the ‘before’ and ‘after’ the work was undertaken.



PANEL DISCUSSION Community Custodianship and Shared Heritage


There are many metal objects in homes, garages and museums that have come from the original salvage work carried out in Orkney.  These objects, whether domestic or museum artefact, are a tangible legacy of Orkney’s salvage story and along with the family stories that go along with them should be preserved.   

If you have some objects that have come from the German Fleet and would like to share your story please come along with a photograph of the object.  We aim to build up the museums knowledge on objects out-with the museum to create a ‘Community Catalogue’ that will help to identify objects and feed into future research. 

No valuations for objects will be given.

images: Stromness Museum artefacts – Rebecca Marr, Stromness Museum / Archive images – Orkney Library & Archive / Animation image: Norna Sinclair / Digital imaging – Chris Rowland