Anchors away! Tobruk and Sydney to move

This article has photo gallery Published on Ms Natalie Staples (author), ABIS Chantell Brown (photographer)

Location(s): Sydney, New South Wales

Deputy Port Services Manager Lieutenant Clint Waters stands beside a 11 tonne mooring anchor at Garden Island, Sydney. (photo: ABIS Chantell Brown)
Deputy Port Services Manager Lieutenant Clint Waters stands beside a 11 tonne mooring anchor at Garden Island, Sydney.

Decommissioned Navy ships Tobruk and Sydney will shortly be moved to the eastern side of Garden Island, to make more space along Fleet Base East.
 
The introduction of new ships into service – primarily the 27,500 tonne, 230m long Canberra class amphibious ships, HMA Ships Canberra and Adelaide, have created pressure on berth spaces at Garden Island.
 
Deputy Port Services Manager, Lieutenant Clint Waters, said his team has started doing a range of mooring tasks to alleviate some of the challenges associated with the shortage of berths.
 
“To create a berth, we’re taking the two decommissioned ships and we’re going to put them at the Man of War Number 1 buoy on the eastern side of Garden Island – a practice we used to do quite regularly 25 years ago," he said.
 
To prepare for the move, three large mooring anchors stored on a lighter, or flat-bottomed barge, have been moved to the wharf at Garden Island.  They will be specially laid using a crane and slip arrangement, and then be dredged into position.
 
“By the 7 March, we’ll have the 11 tonne anchor and two, five-and-a-half tonne anchors in place and then Tobruk and Sydney can be moved into position.”
 
Tobruk 
and Sydney were decommissioned in 2015.  They are being kept at Garden Island until a decision on their disposal is made by Government.
 
“The ships will be berthed as close to Garden Island as we can get them," Lieutenant Waters said.
  
"They’ll be completely contained within naval waters restricted zone – so there should be minimal visual and noise impact for resident of Elizabeth Bay and Darling Point."