REW Heritage SCIO

About the REW Heritage SCIO

Originally there was the Rousay Heritage Trust, which became a charity in 2001 with its main objectives being the advancement of the education of the public in the history, culture, natural history and any other features of life in the island of Rousay, Orkney and the preservation for the public benefit of the historical, cultural and natural heritage of the island.

From June 2017 The Rousay Heritage Trust was incorporated with the Wyre Heritage Society and took over responsibility for looking after the Wyre Heritage Centre and its archive of heritage material.

Contact between Rousay, Egilsay and Wyre and the North Isles Landscape Partnership Scheme [NILPS] regarding proposed initiatives across our three islands was also being co-ordinated by the REW Heritage Trusts.

Because of the above developments, the Rousay Heritage Trust became the Rousay, Egilsay and Wyre Heritage SCIO or, locally, simply the REW Heritage.

The recent and on-going initiatives funded by NILPS include:

  • Improving the signage and way-marking of “Heritage Trail” sites and footpaths on all three islands.
  • Updating and extending the heritage displays in the waiting room building at the Rousay Pier.  The striking new displays, designed and installed by Rhona Jenkins Design and Marketing, were completed in October 2021 and have been widely admired.  The areas immediately surrounding the building have been tidied up considerably, courtesy of the REW Development Trust
  • Providing safe car parking and an information board, at the viewpoint and sculpture site, at highest point of the public road between the Leann and the Sourin Brae.
  • Restoring the Pier Store building for displaying domestic and agricultural heritage artefacts.

It is anticipated that the ongoing projects will be completed during 2022/23.

Funding from sources other than NILPS was obtained for making the existing Wyre Community and Heritage Centre fully weathertight.  This initiative had to be aborted soon after work commenced, however, because the original wooden structure, between the blockwork outer walls and the internal lining proved to be in a very dilapidated state.  OIC funding from the Community Development Fund, the Crown Estate Fund and the Small Business Grant was obtained to build and fit out a new Centre.  Work commenced in January 2022 and is expected to be completed in May 2022.

Bryan Milner  (Chair, REW Heritage SCIO)


If further information is needed please contact the REW Heritage via  If you would like to become a member of the REW Heritage SCIO please complete this form and return to the REW DT Office.

For the latest accounts please click here

For our Constitution please click here

For a copy of the Rousay, Egilsay & Wyre Stepping Back in Time, Archaeology & History booklet 2023 (a brief history of our three islands), please click here

Our next AGM will be held around October 2023, details and date to be confirmed nearer the time.  Please come along to find put all about the new projects and the Heritage SCIO, all welcome, members and non-members alike.

Digital Archaeology & Heritage Resources & Research Training for Rousay, Egilsay & Wyre

Do you live on Rousay, Egilsay and Wyre and want to find out more about the archaeology and heritage of your islands from the comfort of your home? This is for you!

With funding from the Well-Being Hunters Foundation, the Rousay, Egilsay and Wyre Development Trust has teamed up with The UHI Archaeology Institute to support islanders during and beyond the Covid-19 Pandemic. This project provides an opportunity to support island residents (young and old) to discover, access and enjoy archaeology and heritage resources on the internet. Old maps, aerial photographs, national archives and site listings – there is so much available online, you just need to know where to look!

The project has three elements:

  • A resource pack document which contains information and links to digital resources

  • Sign up for basic research training and online one-to-one session with our team

  • Enjoy our series of talks about the archaeology of the islands and the Skaill excavations

The digital resource pack is designed to provide islanders with a basic understanding of available resources and how to undertake research. Maybe you would like to research your house, farm or a place of interest using freely available resources online? You can pick and choose. For the resource pack click here and talks will be of interest in their own right.

This funding also paid for the UHI to produce four online talks.  The YouTube videos of talks by the project team are on the background, place names, survey & excavation, and marine resources at Skaill Farm, Rousay, Orkney. The team from the University of the Highlands and Islands (UHI) Archaeology Institute have been working at this Norse to post-medieval farmstead since 2015. In 2019 a large Norse hall was discovered.  Follow this link to hear all about this fascinating site.

2019 Swandro Excavation Report

For a short report on the exciting findings at last summer's Swandro dig on Rousay, please click here

In 2017 we received Heritage Lottery funding Stories, Stones and Bones grant and additional funding form the OIC Archaeology Fund and the REW DT. for a Summer of History programme, The final part of the grant award was the production of a booklet telling a brief history of our three islands.  This is called Rousay, Egilsay & Wyre Stepping Back in Time and can be downloaded here.



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