The Register of Australian and New Zealand Ships and Boats


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WALTER REEKS - Naval architect

Walter Reeks, 1861-1925, was Australia's premier naval architect in his period, and was responsible for a wide variety of craft, including the steamers  Ena and Lady Hopetoun, the large racing cutter Era (below), schooner Boomerang (ex.Bona), Manly ferry Kuring-Gai (above), the Lady Denman and many other ferries, river steamers for Tasmania, pearling luggers, and numerous launches and yachts. So far, about one hundred boats designed by Reeks have been identified, but there are likely to be more.

A number of examples of Walter Reeks' work still survive including the Ena, Lady Hopetoun, Boomerang and Lady Denman. Perhaps there are still others waiting to be discovered.

David Payne, yacht designer and Project Officer ( part time) at the Australian National Maritime Museum is researching  Reeks and would be interested in any information. You can contact David at

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