The Norfolk

In 1798 the explorers Bass & Flinders were dispatched to ‘Van Dieman’s Land’ to ascertain if it was an island or not. They sailed with a crew of eight in HM Colonial Sloop Norfolk right into the Tamar River and anchored off what is now George Town.

In 1998 the replica Norfolk was constructed by Bern Cuthbertson and his team of volunteers at Ellendale. The hull is Huon Pine and the mast and deck are made out of Celery Top Pine. Not a screw or a nail was used – trunnels, or treenails, hold the vessel together.

The “KD”

The KD, or to give her full name “The Kenneth Dickenson”, was a generous gift from Ivan Dean MLC, and local corporation Comalco Aluminium.

The KD was built in 1929 and was used by the Australian Navy before finding her way to Tasmania and being purchased by the 1st Tamar Sea Scouts.

The Tamar Class Sailing Dinghy

The Melanie is a Tamar Class Sailing Dinghy, a class that was designed and developed on the Tamar and built by pupils of the George Town High School in the 1960s. The Melanie is a very light sailing vessel and easy for teaching youngsters to sail.

The Elizabeth

The Whale Boat Elizabeth explored Van Dieman’s Land under the direction of Captain James Kelly and convict crew from December 1815 to January 1816. In 1985, the replica was built of Huon Pine on a Celery Top Pine keel, which has been used in re-enactments of Kelly’s voyage since 1986.

The Tom Thumb

Matthew Flinders completed a voyage from Port Hacking to Sydney in the original Tom Thumb. This replica Tom Thumb was constructed of Huon Pine by Don Brown at Dover in Southern Tasmania. 

The RJ Bains and the Barry Henry

The RJ Bains and the Barry Henry are rowing fours, and both have been seen on the Tamar River for many years with Launceston Grammar School. They are of the 1960s vintage.

Tasmanian Quilting Guild Inc. 
1998 Challenge Quilts

A collection of 15 small quilts made by guild members to depict “What Bass and Flinders Saw” on their 1798 voyage circumnavigation in the Norfolk. Several incorporated a view through the ship’s spy-glass. The quilts travelled extensively as a suitcase exhibition before finding a permanent home in the centre.

The Canoe

The Canoe on display was built locally (on the West Tamar) to provide enjoyment and relaxation to the children (and adults) of the makers. It was mainly used on the western banks of the Tamar in the late 1980s – 1990s. The construction is predominantly of canvas stretched over a timber rib cage, making the unit extremely light.

Surf Board – (Banana Board)

Built around 1963-65 by John Lunnon from Riverside, originally for use at East Beach, Low Head. It has a King Billy pine frame covered with marine ply and used until mid-1980s.

Voyage to Terra Australis Log

The ‘Voyage to Terra Australis’ is a copy of the Matthew Flinders day-to-day log and an atlas of the charts he produced whilst involved in the exploration around the Australian coastline. The first copy of the 'Voyage of Terra Australis’ was bound and made available to him in July 1814.

The Zephyr 2

The Zephyr 2 was one of the two small sabot yachts owned by the Trevallyn Sea Scouts. Constructed by Mr. Rod Williams and his helpers from the Tamar Yacht Club in the 1960s. Many a child (both boy and girl) has learnt to sail in this sailing craft!

Ken Gourlay Display

Follow Ken Gourlay’s Round the World Solo Quest day by day! This solo, non-stop unassisted trip was completed from 6 November 2006 to 6 May 2007. Actual mainsail piece included in the display.

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