Orkney Islands Council
Working together for a better Orkney

New Tour App for St Magnus Cathedral

New Tour App for St Magnus Cathedral
04 September 2018

Visitors to St Magnus Cathedral in Kirkwall can now access a handy app providing an audio-visual guide to the iconic building.

The guide can be accessed through your own phone or tablet when entering the cathedral and offers users access to an array of digital content about the cathedral including images, short videos and audio descriptions.

Instructions for accessing the app are available at the front door of the cathedral. Users will need to use headphones to enjoy the full range of content available. Headphones are not provided at the cathedral.

Until now self-guided tours have been supported by traditional printed information leaflets. The development of the new app has been funded through the Kirkwall Townscape Heritage Initiative.

St Magnus Cathedral, which welcomes in excess of 200,000 visitors every year, was founded in 1137 by Earl Rognvald in honour of his uncle St Magnus and took 300 years to build.

Towering above the Kirkwall landscape, the cathedral with its distinct sandstone hues is one of Orkney's most significant landmarks.

Peter Diamond, the Council's Head of Education (Leisure, Culture and Inclusion), said: "The digital content developed for the cathedral creates an enhanced, informative and educational visitor experience unlike any other currently available in Orkney, helping to reimagine the cathedral for the 21st century and enhancing its appeal for a wider audience."

The Kirkwall Townscape Heritage Initiative is a 5 year heritage-based grant scheme which seeks to deliver sustainable improvements to the built heritage of the Kirkwall Conservation Area, in an effort to regenerate the centre of Kirkwall for the benefit of local communities and businesses, as well as to attract visitors. The scheme has been running since July 2014 and will conclude in June 2019.

The overall budget for the scheme is £3.445 million, which is primarily being provided by Heritage Lottery Fund, Historic Scotland and Orkney Islands Council.

St Magnus Cathedral is open Monday to Saturday, from 09:00 - 18:00 and Sunday 13:00 - 18:00 and is free of charge.

Tours of the upper levels of the Cathedral are available on Tuesdays, Thursdays and at weekends. There is a charge for the tours and they must be booked with the Custodian by calling 01856874894.