The Orkney Folklore & Storytelling Centre engages audiences through Orkney Storytelling Evenings & family workshops of island legends, lore & social customs through traditional music, song & dance & join a town or coastal walks (STGA qualified)
The Folklore & Storytelling Centre: Events, Workshops & Guided Walks
Booking essential call / email Lynn 01856 841 207 / firstname.lastname@example.org
Or visit the website
Peatfire Tales of Orkney: A magical evening of storytelling & social customs
Tuesdays & Fridays from 8PM - for 8:30PM storytelling start. Adults £10/children £6.
Island Tales & Ales: An atmospheric evening of storytelling & social customs
Sunday & Wednesdays from 8PM at the Still Whisky Bar, Stromness Hotel, including a complementary Orkney ale/whisky or wine. Cost £10 per person. Book with Lynn or at Stromness Hotel.
Private group bookings:
6 - 35 guests offering a bespoke “A Taste of Orkney” tailored to group interests. Includes Island Legend & Lore, Social Customs, Traditional Orkney dance & music.
Handfasting & Wedding groups welcome.
Family & Children’s Island StoryCircles: 2 hour workshops for 2 - 6 people. Parents/children welcome to your Orkney Island adventure, make Island creatures/characters in puppets, masks & Storyboards. Cost £40 (inc. materials & light refreshments)
For guided town and coastal walks (STGA qualified guide) see our website
The Power of Story Workshops & Summer Schools - a series of creative learning workshops for staff, volunteers, carers & parents in communication, social skills & expressive arts. Of particular interest to those working in the field of special education, early learning education, social care & mental health.
Workshops offered including StoryCircles, drama, creative movement, environmental art & sculpture, mask & puppet design. Discover storytelling, story writing & story sharing. Enjoy these active learning workshops realizing the transforming power of our own imagination through exploring language, visual communication & our five senses using the above techniques. All within the safe parameters of “THE STORY”.
Outreach offered at your own venue
The Folklore & Storytelling Centre Experience:
As a centre of Orkney Heritage Tourism we welcome you to listen to the Orkney Islands oral traditions of storytelling, ballads, sagas, song & poetry with a particular emphasis on the Island fishing & farming peoples & their traditions. Discover who these “Fisherman With Ploughs” are as George Mackay Brown called them in his “Poem Cycle”. Experience the past Islander’s sea legends, crofting tales, customs & beliefs, how the Island calendar & partnership with this ancient landscape & surrounding seas has shaped today’s social landscape on these North Atlantic Islands.
Folklore & Heritage Library:
Sit in candlelight by the peat fire & browse through the local social customs & heritage, exploring the old Orkney books, newspapers, prints & photographs.
The Hamnavoe Room:
Listen to local Orkney music or dialect while exploring contemporary Orkney writer’s books including George Mackay Brown & Gregor Lamb or Island craft books & the children’s Orkney books such as Faraway World: An Orkney Boyhood by W. Towrie Cutt.
Folk Arts Studio:
“A time in the old Orkney crofts with their cruisie lamps under the rafters, the feeblest of glimmers, with the old soft mouths at the edge of darkness. telling their spells & stories over & over again” George Mackay Brown
Gather round our big peat fire surrounded by wall murals & collages of the Islands’ legends & myths alongside the masks, puppets & models of Orkney folkloric characters & creatures. Here is where we transport you with our stories & music by the light of the peat fire. From 8PM
The Garden of Island Legend & Lore:
“Memory loves to linger, around that sacred spot, recalling scenes that’s by-gone, but cannot be forgot” John Merriman, Via, 13 January 1891
Explore our outdoor creative space inspired by the four elements - Earth, Air, Fire & Water set in the ancient landscape of Via. From the old Norn word “Veeo”, “Via” means “a sacred place” - discover the story of the Stones of Via & the Bronze-age burial mound. Let your imagination wander whilst sitting surrounded by sculptures & forms created from recycled materials inspired by characters of Island folklore & legends. Donations welcome for local charities or not for profit organisations connected to fishing & farming communities.
The Peatfire Tales of Orkney: The Experience
On Tuesdays & Fridays evenings you are invited to gather round our peatfire to listen to the magic of these North Atlantic Islands legends & myths. Indigenous music, rhymes, customs & dances are woven through this Island tapestry of storytelling. In our Folk Arts studio travel back with us in time to when the stories, tales & crafts of the fishing & farming Islanders were passed on from one generation to another through their oral traditions.
You are welcome to come from 8PM to enjoy the Heritage Library, Hamnavoe Room & Garden of Legend & Lore, Peatfire tales commences at 8:30PM in the Folk Arts studio
A light refreshment of juice will be offered at the interval
Cost - Adult £10 / children £6. Group concessions offered. Booking essential
The Island Tales & Ales: The Experience
“The enchanting tongues went on & on beside the fish oil lamps, then the grey of morning entered the crofts, & called the Islanders back once more to their hard work of ploughing & fishing”
George Mackay Brown
The Stromness Hotel’s private Still Room Whisky Bar has a rich heritage of the fishing & farming people of Stromness sharing their daily stories about real people, real lives & real places at the end of the day over a jar of ale or nip o’ whisky. Share an evening in the Still Room Whisky Bar reminiscent of a 19th Century Stromness ale house. Sit around the peat fire, at your candlelit table & enjoy a complimentary drink on us whilst listening to the legends, customs & social heritage of the Island people who worked the land & fished the sea.
Wednesday & Sunday night from 8PM to hear sea-salted tales of Stromness including smugglers, seamen, tales of the tide & selkies song.
The Still Room Whisky Bar is on the second floor of the Stromness Hotel, next to the reception.
Cost: £10 per person, complimentary Orkney ale/whisky or glass of wine offered. Booking essential
Family Story Circles: The Experience
Come along as a family or small group (2 - 6 people) to enjoy your Orkney Island adventure creating your own Storyboards & Storymaps, bringing folklore & legend character/creatures to life through mask & puppet making
Workshops are led by Lynn Barbour who has extensive experience in communication arts, drama & dance along with the design of mask & puppet theatre. Lynn has developed creative learning programmes to use storytelling as a tool to help stretch the imagination & build the confidence in children who have difficulties in social skills, education & communication.
Workshops are interactive where children & adults alike can create their own stories, tell their own tales, sing their own songs & rhymes...Leave Orkney with your own folklore inspired puppet or mask.
All materials are provided & include recycled & locally sourced items. Light Orkney refreshments provided also including Orkney fudge & biscuits.