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Open Alma!

30 Jul 2019

Open Alma! Image

By Sarah Bartlett

Did you know that the Alma Doepel restoration is open on Tuesdays for historical and heritage tours of the 155-year-old Australian three masted topsail schooner?

Located at No 2 Victoria Dock, locals are invited for an exclusive behind the scenes tour of the Docklands community restoration project every Tuesday from 12pm to 2pm.

The openings provide visitors with the chance to look up close at the ship as the restoration takes shape, as well as meeting the makers responsible for the tall ship’s restoration.

Attendants can learn about the role of the Alma Doepel and her extensive part in Australian maritime history. There is also the opportunity to observe the preparations being made for re-planking as well as witnessing the bending, shaping, and steaming of the frame restoration. Visitors can view firsthand the skills and craftsmanship being applied by the shipwrights as the Alma Doepel prepares for the next chapter in her history.

The Alma Doepel has a rich past, originating from 1903 and built in Bellington, NSW by Frederik Doepel. The ship was a trading vessel that sailed mostly around the coast of Australia carrying goods such as timber, wheat and jam.

From 1917, the Alma Doepel carried jam from IXL in Tasmania to the mainland. She set a delivery speed record time of 58 hours and 30 minutes.

The vessel was also used in World War II as a supply vessel in Papua New Guinea, before returning to commercial service around Tasmania in 1946. Funds were raised in 2007 for the return of the vessel to Melbourne.

The Alma Doepel has been berthed at Victoria Dock since 2009 for an extensive restoration to help restart her work as a sail-training vessel.

The restoration project has to date raised $2.1 million though sponsorships and donations. There is a remaining $1.2 million needed to complete the project.

The tours are open every Tuesday from 12 -2pm. For more information or to donate visit almadoepel.com.au

 

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