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  • The Pickaquoy Centre, Orkney - image by Colin Keldie

Leisure Centres

The main venue for sports, arts and leisure in the county is the Pickaquoy Centre in Kirkwall, known locally as 'Picky'. The centre, which boasts a fantastic swimming pool and health suite in addition to a range of other facilities, hosts major concerts, gigs, performances and sporting competitions. The 243-seater New Phoenix Cinema shows blockbusters (in 2D and 3D), world films and even live theatre performances via satellite link.

You’ll also find a swimming pool in Stromness, with steam room, sauna, spa and fitness centre, and smaller pools in the islands of Hoy, Westray, Sanday and Stronsay.

Other leisure services include Orkney Library and Archive in Kirkwall, and Stromness Library. You can study local history through primary sources in the Orkney Archive, trace your family tree with the Orkney Family History Society, view images in the photographic archive and listen to recordings in the sound archive. The library service also operates mobile vans to take books to outlying areas and island communities.

The Orkney Theatre - part of the Kirkwall Grammar School complex - is a state-of-the-art venue for all manner of concerts, performances and events, with seating for 384 people.

The Sound Archive in Kirkwall is Orkney’s newest venue hosting exciting new musicians and more established acts on a regular basis.