Andrew Laurenson at the top of one of the 350 foot steel transmitter towers at Skaw in 1947. (© Andrew Laurenson, via Leslie Smith)A CD/CHL station. (© Historical Radar Archive)A Crossley electric generator inside a Power House. (© Historical Radar Archive)

Radar in Scotland 1938–46


Product Description

by Ian Brown

With histories of each individual station, this book shows how the radar chain operated, how the radar information was processed and used for the air defence of Scotland, and what it was like to live and work on these mostly very remote sites. Featuring many unpublished photographs taken during the war, as well as first-hand accounts from servicemen and women who served on these stations, for the first time this book gives an accurate account of the early warning and navigational aid stations in Scotland and the vital role they played in the Second World War.

Ian Brown has been researching the history of radar in Scotland for more than 35 years. He has written and lectured widely on military and aviation history, and works as a curator at the National Museum of Flight in East Lothian.

Table of Contents

Recommend to your Librarian



The author and the Society of Antiquaries of Scotland gratefully acknowledge funding towards the publication of this book by the Marc Fitch Fund and several private donors.

Additional Information

Weight 0.9 kg
Dimensions 246 x 189 mm




Number of Pages




Publication Date

April 2022


Ian Brown

Subject Fields

Military history, Second World War, Military aircraft, Radar


  1. :

    ‘An absolute exemplar of how a book of this type should be written, and one which should find a place on your bookshelves immediately; a truly 5-star read […] and one to dip into for a long time to come.’

  2. :

    ‘A unique blend of technical and social history which embraces the whole of Scotland.’

  3. :

    ‘There is much for the reader interested in the history of the technology of radar, and its implementation in wartime under trying conditions – the challenges of Scottish weather and terrain are frequently mentioned. And the geographic spread of the stations, from the Shetlands to Argyll, and the Western Isles to the east coast, means the book includes much Scottish local history, both from WW2 itself and leading into the beginnings of the Cold War. Equally, there is fascinating social history in the stories from the workforce of men and women, thrown together in adversity. And not all from the UK, by any means, as the RAF radar teams included New Zealanders, Canadians, Australians and Americans … a fine piece of military history research, and a worthy memorial to the men and women of the RAF who endured the long hours poring over radar screens and the delights of the Scottish climate.’

  4. :

    ‘I can […] strongly recommend this book as a good read in itself and for anyone interested in military history who is living in or travelling to Scotland’

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