I have some sad news in regard to a piece of NZ’s Maritime history – ‘Tarapunga’, one of the 16 Harbour Defence Motor Launch’s (HDML) that the Navy purchased in 1943 & were later used for Survey work charting the NZ coastline (painted white) & also undertook Fisheries Protection work (painted black) caught fire & sunk off Nelson early this week.
The photo of her berthed at the wharf was taken by Keith Ingram (Skipper magazine) in Picton only a few months ago.
One of Tarapunga’s sister ships ‘Paea’, owned by Keith Nicholson & Heather Reeve (photo below) is in the CYA fleet.
Paea – the only Harbour Defence Motor Launch in original condition, and in good working order out of the 16 the Navy bought in 1943. Yes she is wood 🙂
Interested in reading more on all things Motor Launch, be they serving in the Navy or in civvy hands. (over 250 photo’s and 50+ stories and tech data / links to other ML pages) Check out the link below