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June 14, 2021
Business Featured History News

Celebrating 100 Years of Yachting and Sailing in Port Moresby

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By Jana Zoriry

The Royal Papua Yacht Club today celebrated 100 years of sailing and water sports in Port Moresby.

Established in what was then the Port Moresby Aquatic Club in 1921 by a young sailor Arthur P Travers, the Club had 30 members by the end of 1921. The first clubhouse was built in 1928; that was destroyed during the war in 1942 in an air raid.

The war also claimed a passenger vessel MV Macdhui; its mast was later salvage and is used as the Club’s flag pole. Also salvaged was the vessel’s anchor; it sits at the entrance to the clubhouse.

MV Macdhui’s Anchor.

From its humble beginnings, the club celebrates its centenary with over 2000 members, a 225 berth mariner, and an iconic clubhouse.

The Club might be the country’s premier yachting and sailing club … but people are at the heart of this club.

General Manager Aaron Batts says the club values everyone’s commitment and dedication in making the club what it is today.

Club’s Commodore Kilroy Genia paid tribute to foundation members, past Commodores, Executive Committees, Membership, and Management for their contribution to the Club.

To mark its centenary, the club this morning hosted the burial of the 100th Anniversary Time Capsule and Unveiling of the Commemorative Plaque.

100th Anniversary Commemorative Plaque.

Both events, was witnessed by Governor-General Grand Chief Sir Bob Dadae.

The capsule contains 100 items from news articles, news clips, photographs, memorabilia, shirts, just to name a few. It was buried in a 5-feet hole in the hope that 100 years from now when the Club turns 200, it will be dugout.

100th Anniversary Time Capsule.

Due to COVID-19, other activities planned by the Club’s 100 Year Committee are deferred to a later date.

History

The Royal Papua Yacht Club was established in what was then the Port Moresby Aquatic Club on June 2 1921 by a young sailor Arthur P Travers.

As an enthusiast sailor, he realized that getting a Western style craft into Papua New Guinea from Australia will be expensive. So be bought a local outrigger canoe and started competitive sailing in PNG Waters.

By the end of 1921, the Port Moresby Aquatic Club had a membership of thirty with sixteen registered raising canoes inbetween them.

The first Clubhouse was built in 1928 but was destroyed during the War in 1942 in an air raid.

The war also claimed a passenger vessel MV Macdhui on June 17, 1942. The vessel’s mast was later salvaged and is used as the Club’s flag pole. Also salvaged was the vessel’s anchor; it sits at the entrance to the clubhouse.

MV Macdhui Wreckage.

The Royal Papua Yacht Club at Present

The Club has over 2000 members, a 225 berth mariner and an iconic club house.

The facilities also include a restaurant, bar, cafe, gym, a storage facility for life aboard members, parking spaces (boats on trailers & vehicles), kids play area, and a small outdoor stage and seating area.

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