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Tug Waratah - A new century of steam

by Mori Flapan

210mm x 297mm.

36 pages plus covers

Published by Mori & Kham Flapan 2020
ISBN 978-0-9581834-1-3
RRP A$19.95 including GST


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Book “Tug Waratah – A new century of steam”


In 2002 I published a book called “Tug Waratah – A century of steam” to commemorate the Waratah’s 100th year. The book sold out some years back, but rather than just reprint the original, I have thoroughly revised the content to include new information that has come to hand since.

Those already familiar with a “Tug Waratah—A century of steam” should find the new book is worth revisiting as it contains many new facts and some new photos.

The last two decades have seen a revolution in the resources available for historical research. Newspaper archives such as Trove have given access to hitherto inaccessible articles that have added greatly to our knowledge of the Waratah’s history. Some of the more colourful events have been included in the new publication.

People have come forward with photos and information about the Waratah. There is now a short article about one of her early skippers and also a summary of the Fleet’s early history that acknowledges the role of the late Warwick Turner whose efforts saved the Waratah from the scrapmerchant's torch.

Chapters describe the restoration of Waratah from what was essentially a rust-bucket to a fully operational representative of another era. At the end is a description in simple terms of how the Waratah’s steam engine works.

An important addition is that the new edition properly highlights the ongoing efforts of those that keep the Waratah operational, in a whole new section titled “The Volunteer Commitment Continues”.

In telling Waratah’s story, the book touches on the history of tugs in Australia, coastal shipping in NSW, the Public Works Department dredge service, Cockatoo Island, the pilot service and the examination service during the two World Wars. There is also a fleet list of the dredges, tugs and steam hopper barges in the Public Works Department’s Dredge Service.

The book is illustrated with numerous colour and black and white photographs, plus drawings of the Waratah's profile, the Ross and Duncan engine and the steam cycle.

"Tug Waratah-- A new century of steam" is available through the Sydney Heritage Fleet's online shop at
 www.sydneyheritagefleetshop.com. All profits from the sale of the book go to the Sydney Heritage Fleet.