Golden Gate AK33




Today’s post has come together with the help of a bunch very knowledgeable woodys, all members of the Work Boat Study Group – Harold Kidd, Baden Pascoe, Russell Ward, Keith Ingram & Bob McDougall. The fishing photo above is from the Tudor Collins collection at the Auckland Museum, emailed to me by Ken Ricketts. The stern on photo is ex Baden Pascoe from Theo Lowe’s scrap book.

Golden Gate was built by WG Lowe Ltd in mid>late 1930’s. She measured 46′ LOA & was most likely powered by a K3 Kelvin from new, these were the engine of the choice of most of the dally Waitemata fishermen. The Kelvin would push her along at 8 knots. Most of the fleet were eventually re-powered by Gardners fitted by Shorty Sefton, the grandfather of Andrew, Cameron and Matthew Pollard.
The number ‘714’ tells us that this is a wartime photo, as these I/D numbers being allocated from 1940. During this period she was  Auckland-based & owned by a M. Modrich. There’s a good chance that the man in the photo is the owner himself, Mr Modrich.

Golden Gate was later based at Tauranga, and was wrecked on Whale Island on 1 September 1957. At the time she owned by Golden Fisheries Ltd, Tauranga.

Now there was some debate as to what she was up to in the top photo, some suggesting she was aground & about to get a tow. Keith Ingram has however voiced his opinion that she is fishing and doing beach seining, when they were allowed to do it in the Gulf. The bow will be on the puddy and the tide coming in. If you look closely the engine is ticking over ahead. The skippers mate will be on the other end of the net on the beach. You had to haul the ropes by hand.

The cool thing about these ‘old’ work boats was that while they were ‘commercial’ they had style, something that is missing from most of todays ocean harvesters 😦

01-10-2016 Input from Harold Kidd – ex Paperpast, the headline answers the engine questions.


02-10-2016 – Perhaps the mystery is solved. Baden Pascoe sent me the photo below (Tudor Collins again) that shows the Dalmatia about to tow Golden Gate off the sand/mud. Baden commented that a couple of things in the photo lead him to believe that it is a tow job –  the weight of the line, this is too big for seine coil. The other thing is that all the fishing gear is aboard. They could have well got into this situation from doing what Keith says above. Baden advised that Dalmatia is still around.


9 thoughts on “Golden Gate AK33

  1. Owners of the DALMACIA & FOX II were both from the same country, & close friends in the later 1940s 50s era, & were regularly on the Radio chatting about their catches of the day almost every day — two of the more prolific users of radio in those early days – KEN R


  2. Strictly speaking she was DALMACIA, built by Chas. Bailey Jr on 10th March 1931. During WW2 when this photo was taken she was owned by N. Kokich and had a 3 cylinder 66hp Kelvin.


  3. PS The name GOLDEN GATE was probably given because the Golden Gate Bridge was under construction in San Francisco at the time. The first owner, G. Ivankovich, probably had Dalmatian rellies fishing in San Fran. (Just a guess)


  4. OOPS that should be “en ventre ma mere” a legal term, dontcherknow for being in the womb. Freudian slip??


  5. I can relate to that. My father worked for Sanfords during the 1930s. IN fact I was entre ma mere when GOLDEN GATE was launched and only a few hundred yards away in London Street, up Jacob’s Ladder.
    These boats are amongst my earliest memories (and the smell of ammonia in the cool stores). Real boats, real men, real hard work, in real hard times.


  6. I have sent Alan a link to the Auckland Star of 15th November 1935 which carries the bottom picture above. This establishes that GOLDEN GATE was “newly-launched” and had a 42hp Petter diesel. During WW2 she had a 4 cylinder 88hp Kelvin.


  7. Excellent to see a proper boat amongst all the painted ladies! Not being scathing of owners and their styles in this age of (what I term) the F— You style, but here is a certain honesty about a workboat. Everything is there for a purpose and this does not have to preclude a certain type of style. You tend to forget that men lived and gained sustenance from these simple boats and that, at times, their lives depended on them.


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