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Orlock Port War Signal Station

Marked on a map of the Belfast Lough defences from the early 20th Century, Orlock Port War Signal Station (PWSS) would have acted as the gatekeeper for shipping wishing to enter the Lough and sail onward to Belfast. During peacetime the PWSS was staffed by men from the Coastguard, Donaghadee being the nearest CG station, with naval representatives supplementing the civilian crew in times of war. Board of Trade records held at the National Archives record the wartime establishment of Belfast PWSS at Orlock Hill, which fell under Plymouth Command: Signal Bosun (Signal Warrant Officer) as the Officer in Charge; Chief Yeoman or Yeoman of Signals; Station Officer; Stoker Petty Officer or Leading Stoker; and six Coastguardsmen. Read more about the origins of the Coastguard in Northern Ireland.