Hills to Hawkesbury Living Magazine - - Memories -

Reg­u­lar con­trib­u­tor Ron Schofield has sent in yet an­other mem­ory re­gard­ing a trip to Tassie in 1954. Here is his story.

It was with ex­cite­ment that we said good­bye to our dad at Cen­tral Rail­way Sta­tion (Syd­ney) and with our push­bikes and lug­gage we were head­ing to Tas­ma­nia for a ten day tour of the is­land in January of 1954. I was nearly 15 years old and my brother Ge­off, was 13 ½ years old. On load­ing our bikes and gear onto the coal driven steam en­gine we set­tled in for a night trip to Mel­bourne. What a great feel­ing, mov­ing along, lis­ten­ing to all the noises and ad­mir­ing the scenery.

On ar­riv­ing in Mel­bourne we found our way to the docks and loaded our bikes and gear onto a wooden ship called the “Ta­roona”. Af­ter set­tling into our cabin, which was on the side of the boat with a port­hole win­dow, my brother and I went to the din­ing room for a roast din­ner. By this time we were in Bass Strait which was very rough. Af­ter strug­gling back to our cabin we set­tled in for the night. On awak­en­ing in the morning, our cabin had 2” or 50mm of wa­ter on the floor. Af­ter ar­riv­ing at Beauty Point, we started on our tour of Tas­ma­nia.

What a won­der­ful time we had tour­ing the is­land and meet­ing a lot of friendly peo­ple. Some of the places we vis­ited were Burnie, Launceston, Hobart, Queen­stown and Devonport. One af­ter­noon we were shel­ter­ing un­der our tent due to the rain and a cou­ple in their ute pulled over and of­fered us a warm place to stay for the night. Af­ter putting our bikes and our gear onto the ute we ar­rived at their home in Ta­roona. Af­ter a warm shower and din­ner we set­tled in for the night.

Next morning early we looked out the win­dow and to our sur­prise we were watch­ing the Syd­ney to Hobart Yacht Race mov­ing along the Der­went River to Con­sti­tu­tion Dock in Hobart. Af­ter break­fast, this kind cou­ple took us in their ute to the docks to see the yachts and then to Mount Welling­ton to view over Hobart.

Af­ter a very en­joy­able time tour­ing Tas­ma­nia on our push bikes we joined the “Ta­roona” for our re­turn trip over Bass Strait which was very smooth and re­lax­ing. On ar­riv­ing back in Mel­bourne we again en­joyed our steam train ride back to Syd­ney and to our fam­ily. My brother Ge­off and I had a very safe and en­joy­able hol­i­day in beau­ti­ful Tas­ma­nia. Hope you en­joyed read­ing my story Ron Schofield – Baulkham Hills Ivor’s notes: The sub­urb of Ta­roona is where the Shot Tower is lo­cated a lit­tle south of Hobart.

The ship “Ta­roona” was used as a reg­u­lar ferry used be­tween Mel­bourne and Tas­ma­nia. Built in Scot­land in 1934, she com­menced ser­vice in the Bass Strait in 1935. Dur­ing the 2nd World War she was req­ui­si­tioned firstly by the NZ Govern­ment and then later by the Aus­tralian Govern­ment as a troop ship. Af­ter ar­riv­ing back in Syd­ney in the 1946 she was de­com­mis­sioned as a troop car­rier and recom­menced operating a ferry ser­vice be­tween Mel­bourne and Tas­ma­nia un­til 1959 af­ter which she was re­placed by the much larger “Princess of Tas­ma­nia”


If you have some great mem­o­ries, or per­haps you be­long to a lo­cal com­mu­nity or­gan­i­sa­tion and would like to share your or­gan­i­sa­tion’s his­tory or story with us then feel free to share your mem­o­ries or ex­pe­ri­ences by writ­ing to PO Box 1278, Baulkham Hills, NSW 1755 or email to metropoll@op­tus­ au. You can also share mem­o­ries on any of my Face­book mem­o­ries groups in­clud­ing Hills Dis­trict Mem­o­ries which you will find here www.face­ Hills.mem­o­ries/ or Hawkes­bury Hap­pen­ings & Mem­o­ries which you will find at www.face­ groups/Hawkesmem­o­ries/

The “Ta­roona”

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