Duyfken to sail past Yanchep

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The Duyfken is heading north past Yanchep and lancelin and is due in Jurien Bay on Thursday, September 29. Picture: Richard Polden

IF the weather conditions are right you might just be lucky enough to catch a glimpse of the Duyfken as she sails up the coast past Jindalee, Yanchep and Lancelin after she departs Hillarys on Tuesday, September 27.

With 2016 marking the 400th Anniversary of the landing of Dirk Hartog on the coast of Western Australia, the replica sailing ship Duyfken set sail on August 18 from the port of Fremantle to begin the Duyfken 2016 Dirk Hartog Commemorative Voyage and Exhibition program.

Initiated by the State Government of Western Australia, this celebration is to acknowledge the beginnings of European engagement here on the west coast of Australia, marked by Hartog leaving a message of his visit on an inscribed plate that was nailed to a post and jammed in a rock crevice on the most northern point of the island we now know as Dirk Hartog Island.

Engaging the Duyfken replica in this anniversary program provides a tangible connection to the early 1600s.

As an authentic replica of her original namesake that was built around 1595, Duyfken gives a real insight into the way ships of this period were constructed.

Built in Fremantle and launched in 1999 at a cost of $3.7 million, Duyfken has given more than a million visitors a taste of what life was like for the seafarers of the early 17th century.

Travelling the world, the Duyfken replica has shared the story of Willem Janzoon, and the crew of the original Duyfken who became the first Europeans to set foot on Australian soil in 1606, on the western shores of the Cape York Peninsula, some 10 years prior to Hartog’s arrival aboard the Eendracht in 1616.

In acknowledging the significance of this year’s celebration, WA Premier Colin Barnett says it’s fitting that the Duyfken is involved in the celebration of the 400th anniversary of Dutch VOC captain Dirk Hartog’s landing at Dirk Hartog Island off Shark Bay on the WA coast.

“The anniversary provides a real opportunity for Australians to learn more about the Dirk Hartog story and our early maritime history,” he said.

To support the anniversary program Duyfken will undertake a four- month voyage and exhibition program, that culminates in her arrival for the Hartog Festival in Denham, Shark Bay on October 19.

The Duyken has these ports remaining in her journey once she departs Hillarys on September 27, Jurien Bay (Sept 29-Oct 3), Dongara (Oct 4-7), Geraldton (Oct 8-15) and Denham (Oct 19-24).

At each of these ports Duyfken will go on public exhibition with school children booked in for educational tours of the ship.

Members of the general public will be able to go aboard and discover the challenges experienced by the ‘Dutchies’ in their quest to grow the incredibly valuable spice trade from the East Indies.

Tickets are available from www.ticketek.com.au/duyfken

On Monday October 24, Duyfken will set sail from Denham heading for Cape Inscription on Dirk Hartog Island where an official ceremony and plaque unveiling is planned for Tuesday October 25, 400 years to the day from when Hartog landed.

It is anticipated a flotilla of boats, including STS Leeuwin and Young Endeavour will join Duyfken in the bay below Cape Inscription.
In preparing Duyfken for this major voyage and community engagement program, Lotterywest has provided significant funding to support the first major refurbishment of Duyfken since her launch in 1999.