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Visitors to NZNMM

New Zealand National Maritime Museum announces theme weeks


16 May 2020 Mr R C (Bob) Croker, Chairman of the NZNMM Trust Board, today announced an exciting project to honour the late Sir Peter Blake in a purpose built extension to the New Zealand National Maritime Museum. More details

Visitors to NZNMM

The New Zealand National Maritime Museum hosts around 100,000 visitors per year. We often get visits from groups such as PROBUS, ROTARY etc and can often make special arrangements for such visits including guides, trips aboard NZNMM vessels etc. Recently we were pleased to host a group from the Auckland Branch of the Christian Fellowship for the Disabled. The group visited the museum galleries and enjoyed a trip on the NZNMM scow, TED ASHBY.  TED ASHBY can carry 48 passengers and is well suited to passengers in wheelchairs (though the museum does request that groups with more than 2 wheelchairs pre-book so that we can ensure that an additional crew member is carried) 

The photograph below shows the visiting group aboard TED ASHBY. It was published on the front cover of 'The ENCOURAGER', the magazine of the Christian Ministries with Disabled Trust (to whom our gratitude for allowing the picture to be published.)

7 March 2003 - New Zealand National Maritime Museum announces theme weeks

In April the New Zealand National Maritime Museum will launch a staggered series of ‘theme’ weekends to celebrate our most famous and brilliant boat designers.

The first three designers to be featured are Jim Young, Des Townson and Bruce Farr respectively. Each exhibition shares the unusual aspect of being held on both shore and sea. The Sanford Theatre will feature works on paper relevant to each designer. The Museum is actively seeking line drawings and old photos relating to the prolific designs and boats originating from these designers. While in the Museum’s Marina it is planned to have moored each weekend a variety of the types of boats, which were designed by these men.

The Museum intends to hold a Lecture series in conjunction with these exhibitions. Where possible the designers themselves will speak. Otherwise they will be represented by an expert in their particular design field.

This initiative by the Museum is not a ‘one-off’. The Chief Executive Larry Robbins said “We’re starting this scheme with three of our most prestigious boat designers. But there will be plenty more to come as New Zealand has an extraordinary number of internationally renowned boat designers”.

Each of our first three designers has their own special claims to fame, too many to detail. Suffice to say each one’s bio shares the word ‘first’. For example, Jim Young’s drop keel Fiery Cross was the ‘first’ of many Kiwi boats to be built in glued double-skinned construction, and in his 1979 trailer sailer he pioneered water ballast for such boats. Des Townson produced the ‘first’ Townson 32 in 1973. The simple classic lines of the Townson 32s is still a familiar sight in the Hauraki Gulf. Bruce Farr at the age of 20 set up his own boat design office and began a brilliant career with four successive world 18footer titles- the ’first’ New Zealander to do so. Farr moved to Annapolis in 1981 and his designs have since won every major international yachting title apart from the America’s Cup.

The ‘theme’ weekends will run consecutively every two weeks from 12 April to 17 May. Members of the public will pay $15 and will get to see all 3 exhibitions. NZNMM Friends receive free admission.




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