Friday, 28 July 2017

A Visit to HMAS Darwin alongside in Brisbane....

The Brisbane Tour of “HMAS Darwin”

The small group of Aussie Hero Quilt & Laundry Bag Sewers (and 2 husbands) made their way to Portside on Wednesday.  All excited to check out HMAS Darwin were Fran, Cathie & Ron, Lesley and Heather & Dave. 

After being welcomed on board and exchanging our driver’s licences for an on board pass, we were introduced to our escorts Leading Seamen Robbins and O’Shea.

First stop was the Control Room – where the engineers oversee the power generators, jet turbines and keep watch on all areas of the ship, 24/7. This ship generates enough power to run a small city! A room full of dials and gauges, which in the new ships are replaced by touch screens. 

The most important area we were told though is the galley! I guess there would be a mutiny without the cooks preparing the many meals a day – especially when they are on exercise or deployed. 

Well – no one was too keen to be the person on the top of the triple bunks - Junior crew had no choice! We did see a couple of Aussie Hero Quilts and a few laundry bags hanging up. L. Seaman Robbins received a laundry bag on last deployment, which is why he volunteered to show us around. 

Up to the bridge – where all the action happens. HMAS Darwin was a control ship for air surveillance during the recent Talisman Sabre Exercise. The crew certainly seemed to enjoy this experience but were disappointed not to fire their missiles :(  Out to the foredeck and upper deck next, where Able Seaman Nurzenski explained the different radars, missile launches and telecommunications. 

Still very impressive for a ship that is about to be de-commissioned. We were told how they keep fit on board and showed us their gym – converted from the helicopter hangar. 

Our tour was just about over when a message was received that we were invited to the Ward Room for morning tea. There we were greeted by Sub Lieutenant Daniel O’Neill and treated to refreshments. It was interesting listening to Danny’s career to date and then it was our turn to tell him about why and how we got to come on board.  We told him how Aussie Heroes started and that we make Quilts and Laundry bags to please any interest or hobby. I think he will be putting in an order at first opportunity! 

Unfortunately we missed saying our thank you personally to Seamen Robbins, O’Shea and Nurzenski as we were taken to morning tea and then they disappeared! We enjoyed your tour and company. Thank you!

It was time to farewell HMAS Darwin – the crew have mixed feelings about the decommissioning but looking forward to new training challenges on their next ship. 

So to all the crew - Thank you for your hospitality and thank you for you service – you make a lot of sacrifices being away from family and friends – our best wishes for your future! 

Our thanks also to  Jan-Maree for making this visit possible. We had a great day!

Heather, Fran, Lesley and Cathie


  1. Wonderful. so glad you could go on behalf of all of us (a little jealous)

  2. Do they hold your licences in case you take her for a joy ride and not come back? They know where to find you! Haha. Looks fabulous.