70th Anniversary of Commissioning
The 17th of June 2012 marks the 70th anniversary of the commissioning of Castlemaine as a unit of the Royal Australian Navy (RAN). The ship was formally named Castlemaine at her launch by Pattie Menzies (wife of the Prime Minister Robert Menzies).
Prior to the commissioning the ship was generally referred to by the yard build number. On commissioning the Castlemaine became His Majesty’s Australian Ship (HMAS) Castlemaine. In 1942 the monarch was King George VI, hence the His and not the present day Her Majesty’s Australian Ship (Queen Elizabeth II).
The restoration, preservation and operation of the ship is made possible by the generosity of the Geoff & Helen Handbury Foundation, the Yulgilbar Foundation, business houses, the team of dedicated volunteers and of course the gangway entrance fee for visitors.
This year also marks some major restoration projects that include the 27 foot whaler boat (complete), the replica depth charge thrower and a new radar platform/antenna just above the bridge roof. A new Impressed Current Cathodic Protection (ICCP) System was installed this year. An ICCP protects the hull of the ship from rusting and without it the hull would not last very long at all. Many thanks to SAVCOR (Australia) for their assistance in the installation of the system.