Thomas Wood's 1944 watercolour depicts a wheelhouse, the steering and control centre of a warship, at night.
A red overhead light helps preserve night vision, while a voice pipe in front of the helmsman at the ship's wheel (centre) communicates with officers on the open bridge above. A semi-circular red and green indicator (centre left) helps the helmsman steer by showing the position of the ship's rudder, while another display (top left) indicates the ship's direction of travel. Below it, a simple periscope provides a forward view. Other sailors in the wheelhouse operated telegraphs which sent instructions to the ship's engine room.
Painted by Tom Wood in 1944
Beaverbrook Collection of War Art