Prudence is a unique vessel for Australian water’s, we’ve yet to spot another one like her in this country. She’s a boat more typical of northern Europe with her cod bow and mackerel stern and no, she’s not a lifeboat as many think.
Look closer at the hull and you see a utility sailing hull of the late 1800s. She’s made of Teak, has lifting rings in her stem and stern post, has a huge carrying capacity for her size and a plugged centreboard slot in her keel. These facts point to a ship’s boat used for ferrying people or cargo ashore.
How and when she arrived in Australia we have no idea. At the last AWBF we sought information from visitors. We learned much of her 2002 restoration at the Wooden Boat School, but nothing previous to that.
Her earlier restoration ended in a life of neglect. She sat unused on the Huon River south of Franklin for more than a decade. She appeared in Old Dogs of Tasmania and was probably snapped by many a camera. Even neglected she made a beautiful picture on the still river. There’s now been four more steady years of restoration work put into her, hopefully for all to see at the Festival.