Burray is a small island linked to the east mainland of Orkney and South Ronaldsay by the Churchill Barriers. Once only accessible by boat, the farming and fishing community is now linked forever by the causeways.
It has a population of around 350, a new primary school, shop, hotel and harbour. Burray has beautiful sandy beaches, some of the best views across Scapa Flow and otters and seals can be seen from around the fourth barrier.
The Orkney Fossil and Heritage Centre is a fascinating place to visit. Fossils from Orkney and around the world collected by local man Leslie Firth are displayed, some up to 380 million years old, with information and illustrations. The heritage collection was started by Leslie’s father Ernest Firth, who collected everyday items from domestic and working life in Orkney throughout the 20th century including furniture, china, woodworking tools and more. There are also new displays about traditional boatbuilding in Burray and exhibits reflecting life in Orkney during the First and Second World Wars.
An Archive room has census records for Burray and South Ronaldsay from 1821 to 1901, historic photographs, various books and other documents of local interest, including original wartime manuscripts.
The shop stocks a large range of books on the subject, gemstones, jewellery and toys. The Heritage Tearoom at the Centre is run by the local community, offering tasty homemade soups, light meals, cakes and pastries, including gluten free options. The Centre opens for the 2016 summer season on the 23rd of April and closes at the end of September.
For the more adventurous types, Burray also hosts Orkney's only paintball venue, at Northfield. Also available are boat trips on Scapa Flow and clay pigeon shooting.
There is also a vibrant community spirit in Burray that has helped host a small musical festival - Glastonburray - and has seen work start on a crazy golf course and new play park in the village.
Inside Explore Orkney
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