Bon voyage to precious ‘little bits of Bunbury’

Kate FieldingSouth Western Times
Southern Ports project leader Kylie Astbury checks out the plaques from Bunbury Men's Shed members David Moore and Matt Rapkins.
Camera IconSouthern Ports project leader Kylie Astbury checks out the plaques from Bunbury Men's Shed members David Moore and Matt Rapkins. Credit: Kate Fielding / South Western Times

Ships that dock in Bunbury will now leave with a unique piece of the city’s history.

Bunbury Men’s Shed and Southern Ports Authority have joined forces to craft wooden plaques from recycled timber to give to visiting ships during their maiden voyages.

The handcrafted plaques are made from old jarrah around the harbour, including some from Bunbury’s old Timber Jetty.

Shed member David Moore has used his woodworking skills to make the plaques, which will also be laser-engraved.

Shed president Matt Rapkins said the project was just another aspect of the group’s “working relationship” with the port.

“It is a great project because we get a lot of sponsorship from the port and it helps keep us running,” Mr Rapkins said.

“It’s a great relationship we’ve formed with them and we’re looking forward to sustaining that into the future.”

Southern Ports has previously ordered the plaques from a commercial provider with the concept of gifting ships on their maiden voyage a long-standing tradition.

Southern Ports Bunbury general manager Darren Lambourn said the concept was unique because the plaques were sourced locally.

“We’re really proud of this particular project because it supports the local community, recycles locally-sourced timber, supports a men’s mental health initiative and will mean little bits of Bunbury are shipped around the world,” Mr Lambourn said.

A Southern Ports and men’s shed program in Albany uses timber from the old Albany Deepwater Jetty.

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