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Photographer:Clyde Dickens [View profile]Title:WARATAHAdded:Jun 05, 2011
Captured:June 05, 2011IMO:UnavailableHits:964
Location:Sydney, Australia
Photo Category: Steam Ships (Operating and Preserved)
Sydney Harbour, under Middle Head. 5 June 2011.

Waratah, a coal-fired tug, was built at Cockatoo Island, Sydney and launched on the 21st May 1902. Originally named Burunda, her primary role was to tow dredges and barges between the various ports along the NSW coast.

She is the oldest tug in working order in Australia. She carried a crew of 14, including six officers who were accommodated in separate cabins aft.

With raked funnel and counter stern, Waratah has the graceful proportions of a vessel of her era.

Waratah today
Her sea-going days nearly ended in 1948 when, due to her age and condition, she was restricted to Newcastle Harbour. In 1968 it was announced that the old tug was beyond economical repair and was to be disposed of for scrap. The Sydney Heritage Fleet, realising her historical importance, acted to save her and proceeded to purchase the vessel from the Department of Public Works. After a subsequent five-year restoration program she is now, once again, fully operational.

The Waratah's authentic restoration has gained the Fleet world-wide recognition for historic ship preservation.

Vital Statistics:

Overall length 108ft (32.9m)
Beam 20ft (6.1m)
Displacement 165 tons
Powered by Two cylinder compound steam engine
Acquired by the Fleet 1968

For more about the Sydney Heritage Fleet go to
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