Travel

West Pier Lighthouse 1854, Kirkwall, Orkney, Scotland

Iceland cruise March 2018 – When we were exploring Kirkwall, the chief town of Orkney, I found this small lighthouse down in the harbour.  The light was built in 1854, but creased working in 1994.  There is a new modern light, that has taken its place, but it nice to know the old one was kept, as it makes a nice focal point to the harbour.  Another one for the ‘Lighthouse Category’

 

 

The Italian Chapel, Lamb Holm, Orkney, Scotland

Iceland Cruise March 2018 – On my ‘want to do list ‘ was a visit to the Italian Chapel on Orkney, and guess what I got to see it, one of the coach trips included a tour…..so that was the one we went on, well husband got the whisky trip and I got the church.  I had always wanted to visit Orkney, as my great-grandfather was stationed there during WW1, teaching the Scottish ladies on how to make submarine nets.  He actually went to the Dardanelles and fitted them in place, but thats another story, maybe one day.  Well back to our visit, we travelled over a causeway to the small island of Lamb Holm and there, the only building left, is the beautiful Roman Catholic chapel which was constructed by Italian POWs during the Second World War.

In October 1939 a German submarine under the command of Gunther Prien entered Scapa Flow and sank the British battleship ‘Royal Oak’ with the loss of 834 lives. Winston Churchill, at that time First Sea Lord, visited Orkney and the decision was taken to construct barriers to close off four of the entrances to Scapa Flow to make the base for the home fleet more secure.  There was a shortage of manpower to build the barriers, so 550 Italian prisoners of war captured in North Africa, were transported to the Island of Lamb Holm to construction the barriers.

Following a request from the camp priest, Fr Giacobazzi, it was agreed that two Nissen huts would be joined together to provide a chapel. Among the Italians in Camp 60 was an artist, Domenico Chiocchetti, and he was given the task of transforming the two Nissen huts into a chapel. He was assisted by other tradesmen – in particular Giuseppe Palumbi a blacksmith, and Domenico Buttapasta a cement worker.  The chapel is the only building left of Camp 60.  I have added information boards at the bottom of the post.

For taking my photos of this beautiful chapel, I had to rush in before our coach party descended on the chapel, as it would then be impossible to take any people free photos.  My practice of taking photos in a very short time, came into full use and I got most of them, then just aimed for the ceiling.  For those few moments of just me, the chapel felt so serene.  

Chioccetti set to work on the painting of the interior of the sanctuary. The end result is a work of art that is magnificent, and must have been utterly stunning to those imprisoned here. Another prisoner, Giuseppe Palumbi, who had been a blacksmith in Italy before the war, spent four months constructing the wrought iron rood screen, which still complements the rest of the interior today.

Windmills, Minus Sails, Plus A Lot More

Four windmills that are quite local to where we live in the Fens.  None of them are now working, and only one has been restored into a home.  The first windmill is behind Mill House, which is really in need of being restored, if one had a lot of money to take on the task.

The next windmill is behind a garage and I suppose it will just all fall down one day, again such a shame.

Now this windmill has been saved and turned into a home, which is what could have happen to the other three.

Not from far from the above windmill, is this poor specimen, full of rubbish, I think it belongs to a small farm, there are old sheds nearby, which could have something to do with the mill.  But in the ten years we have lived here in the Fens, the mill has just got worse.  I just wanted to record them, while they are still standing.  There are many more dotted around, and I suppose you just can’t save everything.

Just a bystander, watching with interest.

Scapa Whisky Distillery, Orkney, Scotland

 

 

Iceland Cruise March 2018 – When we arrived on Orkney, one part of our coach trip was to see a whisky distillery, Scapa Whisky.  The weather was overcast and cold, also the windows of the coach were tinted and not that clean, so the photos I took out of the window were a bit hit and miss.  The tour was interesting and you got a wee dram and the glass to keep at the end of the tour, which pleased husband, and he was also pleased to add a new one to our ‘Whisky Distillery Category’

A little history……….Scapa has long been known as the ‘other distillery’ on Orkney, overshadowed in both reputation and popularity by the neighbouring Highland Park. This is hardly surprising, given Scapa’s relatively small annual capacity of just under 1 million litres. In recent years however, Scapa has enjoyed increasing popularity as a single malt.

The distillery was originally founded in 1885 by Macfarlane and Townsend, near the town of Kirkwall at the head of Scapa Bay. This location was significant during both World Wars, when it was used as a naval base for the British fleet. Following WWII the distillery was taken over by Hiram Walker & Sons, and then existed in relative anonymity for years before being mothballed in 1994. However, from 1997 until 2004 a small team of staff from Highland Park used the Scapa facility to distil small amounts of whisky and keep the equipment in use.

In 2004, Scapa underwent an extensive refurbishment worth over £2million and full-time production re-commenced. Ownership of the distillery transferred to Pernod Ricard in 2005, and they have helped to raise the profile of the Scapa brand considerably since then. Shortly after this takeover the traditional 12 year old Scapa was replaced with a new 14 year old expression. This was subsequently replaced again with the current 16 year old expression in 2008.

Iceland Cruise 25 – Exploring Lerwick, The Shetlands, Scotland

Iceland Cruise March 2018 – After our coach trip, we had the afternoon to our selves to explore Lerwick, the capital of The Shetland Islands, on the Island of Mainland.  The first settlement to be known as Lerwick was founded in the 17th century as a herring and white fish seaport to trade with the Dutch fishing fleet. This settlement was on the mainland (west) side of Bressay Sound, a natural harbour with south and north entrances between the Shetland mainland and the island of Brassy.  I took quite a few photos, and I just felt that most of them should be in black & white, I wanted to try and get a vintage feeling to some of them.  We had a lovely time just wandering around, the only tourists were from our ship, we were the first cruise ship of the season.  Later we made our way back to the ship, and then it was time to leave port and sail to our last stop, Orkney.  

 

When we were on the coach, I noticed a broch, and took a quick photo (above photo), it was……..The Broch of Clickimin is a large, well-preserved but restored broch.  Originally built on an island in Clickimin Loch, it was approached by a stone causeway. The broch is situated within a walled enclosure and, unusually for brochs, features a large “forework” or “blockhouse” between the opening in the enclosure and the broch itself. The site is maintained by Historic Scotland.  There were several periods of occupation of the site: Late Bronze Age farmstead, Early Iron Age farmstead, Iron Age fort, broch period, and wheelhouse settlement.

Bressay Island Lighthouse 1858 – Nr Lerwick, Shetland, Scotland

I nearly missed this lighthouse March 2018, too busy looking the other way.  We were on coach coming into Lerwick, and as we came over the top of a hill, my husband told me to look quickly through the other window.  There was a lighthouse, I took a quick photo and then it was gone.  What I had seen from a distance, was a Stevenson’s Lighthouse on Brassy Island, built between 1854 to 1858, and designed by brothers David and Thomas Stevenson.  You can visit the island, and there is quite a few places to visit, but as we didn’t have a car, and there was no way that we could go to the island, and get back in time for sailing on our cruise ship.  So one more reason to return and explore theses beautiful Islands.  The Lighthouse is going into my ‘Lighthouse Category’, until I return and take some close up photos. 

Iceland Cruise 24 – Tangwick Haa Museum & Trip Back to Lerwick, The Shetlands

 

Iceland cruise March 2018 – On the way back to Lerwick, after our walk along the cliffs, we stopped to look at ‘Tangwick Haa Museum’  This interesting building is full of items from around the Northmavine area, I have added an information sheet if you want to read about it.

One of the items I found interesting was ‘The Gunnister Man’  who was buried 250 and found in 1951.  I have added the information sheet, unfortunately the photo didn’t come too good, but you can still read it.

While on the coach, the tour guide passed around some old black & white photos of knitters on the island.  The ladies knitted non stop, whatever they were doing, they incorporated some knitting.  I just love the photo of the little girl knitting, they started early in those days.

Some views from the coach window on the way back to Lerwick.  Next post will be a visit to Lerwick.  We are still on holiday in Scotland, and so far have had 6 nice days in row, a few more days to go, just hope the weather holds.