NAA Redcliffe Unveils New HMQS Gayundah Memorial

A new HMQS Gayundah memorial has been unveiled by the Naval Association of Australia – Redcliffe Sub Section, coinciding with the 82nd anniversary of the sinking of HMAS Sydney II during World War II.

HMAS Sydney (II)
HMAS Sydney (II)
Photo Credit: Royal Australian Navy

“November 19 is the anniversary of the sinking of the HMAS Sydney II in World War II, and we hold a service each year,” NAA-RSS President Karl Seddon said, as he emphasised the solemnity of the occasion.

HMQS Gayundah

HMQS Gayundah, 1890
HMQS Gayundah, 1890
Photo Credit: Wikipedia

The HMQS Gayundah, Queensland’s inaugural naval asset, had twin-screw propulsion, reaching speeds of 10 knots and a range of 1300 kilometers. Armed with significant weaponry, it safeguarded the coastline and pioneered wireless telegraphy in Australia.

After its naval service, the Gayundah transformed, serving in World War I before becoming a sand and gravel barge. Eventually, it found its final resting place in 1958, repurposed as a breakwater by the Moreton Bay Regional Council, concluding a storied maritime legacy.

Remnants of HMQS Gayundah at Woody Point
Remnants of HMQS Gayundah at Woody Point
Photo Credit:

Former Moreton Bay Regional Councillor Koliana Winchester and current City of Moreton Bay Councillor Karl Winchester were instrumental in making the new HMQS Gayundah memorial a reality. Seddon expressed heartfelt gratitude, saying, “We’re very grateful to Koliana and to Karl for what they have done to help us get the new memorial.

“It’s somewhere we can hold our remembrances like Anzac Day and Remembrance Day.”

During the ceremony, the Naval Cadet Units TS Moreton Bay and TS Gayundah actively participated. The cadets gave a presentation about the Sydney and the Gayundah. There was the laying of wreaths, a prayer, and the national anthem.

Bruce Stanley, the association’s treasurer, reiterated their commitment to member welfare. “It’s all for the members.

“One of the best days is about doing the Bunnings sausage sizzle and talking to people about what we do. We were involved in their men’s health day too.”

Geoff O’Mara, the association’s secretary, stressed the significance of involving the Cadets in these events. “The memorial’s a place we can come to remember fellow veterans,” O’Mara remarked.

The memorial service took place at the Gayundah Arboretum at Woody Point on November 18. Redcliffe residents gathered in a solemn occasion, reflecting on the legacy of HMQS Gayundah and paying tribute to the brave individuals who served aboard the HMAS Sydney II.

Published 19-November-2023

Moreton Bay Regional Council Is Set to Relocate The Gayundah Shipwreck Bow

Due to high public safety risk, the Moreton Bay Regional Council has decided that it is best to relocate the Gayundah Shipwreck Bow to the rear side of the wreck site.

Despite the number of warnings and signages present, as well as having improved fencing on the location of the shipwreck, some people continue to climb over and even go inside the heavily rusted structure of the HMQS Gayundah.

According to Spokesperson for Asset Maintenance Councillor Adam Hain, having people nearby, or even worse, on the wreck itself, presents great concern for the Council since the shipwreck’s structure is deteriorating. The Gayundah shipwreck is also currently on the verge of collapsing anytime soon.

“The Gayundah shipwreck was placed at the base of the Woody Point cliffs way back in 1958 but the condition of the ship has deteriorated greatly in recent years,” Cr Hain said.

“In 2016 the top part of the bow collapsed and is now resting precariously on the hull. The bow is considered likely to eventually fall further, and Council is concerned this may injure a member of the public.”

Gayundah Shipwreck
Photo credit:

Relocation of the Bow

The Council has no choice but to call in a professional contractor to remove and relocate the collapsed part of the Gayundah Shipwreck bow into the hull of the wreck.

Cr Adam Hain said that a crane would be used for this relocation process that will take place in the next coming weeks, should all approvals from relevant government agencies be obtained.

“We’ve received an independent safety analysis report that recommended a number of interventions, including relocation of the ship’s bow which is at risk of collapsing at any moment, and increasing public awareness of the danger posed by the wreck.”

“The bow will be carefully removed via crane, and relocated into the rear of the wreck, which is a more desirable outcome for the heritage values, rather than letting it fall and break on impact,” he said.

Further information with regards to the exact day and time of the relocation will be announced soon.