Navigating the way

from 19 August 2020

The Port of Eden is NSW’s southernmost deep water harbour and services the needs of recreational, commercial and naval vessels.  Until 1860, facilities were rudimentary and the harbour was navigated at the captain’s own risk.

For 160 years, the Port of Eden has employed a harbour master whose role is to control large vessel shipping movements, enforce State regulations and oversee the maintenance and repairs of the port’s infrastructure and ensure that the waterways are protected from pollution.

Eden’s harbour master is also charged with the role of marine pilot. Pilots are experienced master mariners who mostly use rope ladders to board large incoming vessels four nautical miles out from port (in all types of weather), then assists the ship’s captain to safely navigate and berth the vessel.

Originally Eden’s harbour master-pilot (and his boatmen and families) lived at the Eden Pilot Station overlooking Twofold Bay.  While the harbour master continues to live on the same headland,  the original pilot station and lighthouse no longer exists.

This display looks back on the history of Eden’s Pilot Station and the men and women who have witnessed great changes of the port, including significant moments in Australia’s maritime history.

title image: Eden Pilot Station. Photograph by C E Wellings.