News State NT News Uncertain future for sunken WWII boat in Darwin

Uncertain future for sunken WWII boat in Darwin

HDML 1321
The HDML 1321 was used by Australia's elite Z Special Unit during World War II. Photo: ABC (Supplied)
Twitter Facebook Reddit Pinterest Email

The future of a World War II boat, believed to be the last of its kind in Australia, remains uncertain despite efforts to save it.

The HDML 1321 transported Australia’s elite commandos to the Pacific, but fell into private hands after the war and sank last Wednesday while moored in Darwin Harbour.

Now an effort to try to save it is underway with retired soldier and Member for Solomon Luke Gosling taking a personal interest in the vessel’s fate.

Rex Mitchell Luke Gosling HDML 1321
Diver Rex Mitchell and Member for Solomon Luke Gosling inspect the wreck. Photo: ABC/ Dijana Damjanovic

“We wanted to go down and have a look at it and let people know that it can be salvaged and give ourselves a bit of an idea of what’s going to be required to get this amazing part of Australia’s military and maritime history back to the surface,” he said.

“The boat, as it is at the moment, needs to be moved, so I thought I’d come and have a look for myself at what state it’s in and hopefully we can encourage people to be part of this restoration effort”.

Local boating communities around Darwin said they have all the equipment and expertise needed to get the boat on dry land.

Many offered their sevices at a discounted rate to save the historic boat from a sad end.

A GoFundMe page was launched with the goal of raising $100 000 to restoring the boat to its former glory and put it on display.

If the money cannot be raised, the boat will be salvaged in mid-November by the Darwin Port Corporation, which has the power to scrap it.

– Dijana Damjanovic

View Comments