A lady bows out

LAUNCESTON. – When the 65m. Wyuna slipped into berth at Launceston late last month, the six pilots and nine master mariners on board witnessed the end of an era – and the start of a new one.

The men had accompanied the famous cutter on her voyage across the Bass Strait from Queenscliff as a tribute to ship they had worked on – some since 1953 when the Wyuna first entered service.

The Wyuna has been bought from the Pot Phillip Sea Pilots Service to become a training ship for the Australian Mari-time College in Launceston.

It is the first and only training vessel for the merchant navy in Australia. The Wyuna was the last cruising cutter on active service in Australia, so it has assured itself a place in history.

Both the principal of the Maritime College, Capt. Dan Waters and the secretary of the Sea Pilots Service, Capt. Keith Jordan agreed that it was sad to see the ship leave service.

And at the handing over of a plaque to commorate her previous duties, Capt. Waters vowed to take good care of the Wyuna.

The ship will be outfitted, and ready for one-day cruises in March.