News

Why it’s far too late to save historic SS Dicky wreck

Exposed wreck of cargo ship SS Dicky which grounded at Dicky Beach in 1893.
Exposed wreck of cargo ship SS Dicky which grounded at Dicky Beach in 1893. Chris McCormack

THE iconic wreck of the SS Dicky will most likely be gone in a year, a Sunshine Coast expert has warned.

Paul Seto, who has studied the wreck's history and written a book about it, says it's too late to save the piece of Coast history.

And he puts the blame squarely on the council for allowing the removal of a "significant amount" of the rusting hull during attempts to clean it up and improve safety.

The changes had caused the wreck to lose its "ship shape", which had protected it from significant wave damage since it became stranded on the beach in 1893.

"They took away a trailer-load of stuff," Mr Seto said.

"During their rust proofing and stabilising exercise they broke the ship's shape making the flow of water uneven, which has a major impact on the wreck."

A visitor to the Coast for 50 years, Mr Seto moved to Kings Beach eight years ago and said he was disappointed and saddened by the imminent loss of the wreck, which held significant historical value.

Paul Seto believes it is too late to save the wreck of the SS Dicky.
Paul Seto believes it is too late to save the wreck of the SS Dicky. Brett Wortman

Dicky Beach is the only recreational beach in the world to be named after a shipwreck. "I care about the Dicky from a historical, artistic, atmospheric and engineering point of view because it is special," Mr Seto said. "I love observing the pleasure of visitors (who) take photographs with smiles on their faces and the kids love it too.

"The on-going battle between those elements in council who see the wreck as a safety hazard and those in council, and within the tourist industries, who see it as a major asset, will soon be just an academic argument as most of the wreck, I predict, will be gone by the end of this year.

"It's very sad, but it's too late to do anything now and it can't be saved.

What's your view on possibly losing the SS Dicky wreck?

This poll ended on 11 March 2013.

It's a tragedy for the area - 13%

It's sad but it had to happen - 26%

More should have been down to prevent it - 21%

It's a rusty old boat - get over it - 39%

This is not a scientific poll. The results reflect only the opinions of those who chose to participate.

"With proper care, it could have been around for another hundred years."

Mr Seto said the council and the State Government had failed to have the SS Dicky placed on the Australian National Ship Wreck Database and the damage done to the structure meant it no longer qualified.

"At no point in the council budgets has there been, to the best of my knowledge, any economic value placed on the SS Dicky wreck.

"Go onto the Dicky beach on any day and there are people taking photographs of this atmospheric and artistic object.

"There would be hundreds and hundreds of thousands of photo albums around the world, with Dicky photos, all with people talking to their friends about the wreck."

He believed the only hope was for the council to dig up the remains of the wreck and preserve it on land.

Caloundra councillor Tim Dwyer said while he wasn't involved in council changes to the wreck, he believed they would have been done with the best of intentions.

"Mr Seto may be right in saying council's efforts to preserve the Dicky have shortened its life - I am certainly no expert in that field and I respect where he's coming from," he said.

1985: Stranded.
1985: Stranded.

"I would be more than happy to look into what we can do because this is an important part of our history and once it's gone, it's gone forever.

"To me, the wreck has never been forgotten - I walk my son up there often."

The SS Dicky was an iron steamboat which ran aground in heavy seas on February 4, 1893.

The ship sailed from Rockhampton and as it arrived to clear Caloundra Head it met lashing rain and cyclonic winds.

Captain James Beattie was forced to beach the ship to avoid hitting the rocks off Moffat Beach.

It was refloated, but heavy seas turned it about and back onto the sand where it remains to this day.

The Marine Board of Queensland tribunal concluded Captain Beattie showed a lack of judgment in not successfully weathering Caloundra Head, for which his licence was suspended for three months.

Topics:  beach editors picks history preservation ss dicky wreck



Science Festival seriously awesome

CALLING everyone who wants to see, hear and be a part of something totally cool: this is where you need to be this March.

Drink where the cool kids do this summer

There are a bunch of new bars open in Brisbane, make sure you're there!

CHECK out these new funky bars.

Discover Brisbane’s laneway gems

Brisbane's laneways will surprise you.

NOT all of Brisbane City is as it seems…

Top five things to experience this summer in Brisbane

Tangalooma is amazing if you're keen for a dive, kayak or swim.

THIS summer get out and explore your capital city.

Don’t go chasing waterfalls…find them on these drives!

The Scenic Rim is just one place nearby that you'll love.

BRISBANE isn’t all bright lights and city slickers.

Your boots are made for walking these tours

Brisbane Greeters tours are a great way to learn the local history of the city.

YOU don’t need a bike or bus for a seriously good tour of Brisbane.

Is Brisbane the new arts and culture capital?

Check out GOMA's latest exhibition - it's all about hair! GOMA 10 Ambassador Patience Hodgson visits Nervescape V 2016 by Icelandic artist Hrafnhildur Arnardóttir (aka Shoplifter), commissioned for ‘Sugar Spin: you, me, art and everything’ at the Gallery of Modern Art, Brisbane. 
Photograph: Natasha Harth, QAGOMA

THE rest of the world should be envious of this line-up!

VIDEO: Gav 'the greatest water man' farewelled

Gavin Arthur ashes were scattered today at Brunswick.

Gav was sent off just the way he would have wanted.

Shed backflip a decision community might rue

Dr Steve Phillips.

Koala expert warns community might one day rue "grandstanding” move.

A good brew from Tweed

COOL BEANS: Spencer Davidson and Petter Havnegjerde are expanding to sell coffee from Behind the Grind in Chinderah.

Coffee on the go in Chinderah.

Local Partners

Community love on show for Tate family with fundraiser

JAMES Tate's life and spirit continue to be celebrated with an event raising $27,000 for his wife Beck and daughter Lillie.


Production company desperately seeks men

Tammy Dundon and Melissa Quirk.

When you see the movie you'll think ours is even better

Sharky and the Caddman share their stories and music

Brian Cadd and Glenn Shorrock will play Twin Towns on Saturday, February 25.

Sometimes the best plans are hatched over a nice bottle of red

Group cultivates Tyalgum patch

The Heart Collectors are an acoustic folk group from Tyalgum formed by Kymrie Henge, Tristan Dafoe, Mobius Barnaby and Reuben Loire.

Band stealing hearts at home and abroad

Tensions high at pointy end of MKR's round two

WHEN an ex-vegan pacifist says "I think people that score strategically need a kick in the shins”, the MKR gloves are off.

Jungle Jay sent packing from I'm a Celebrity

I'm A Celebrity ... Get Me Out Here! contestant Jay Laga'aia with Keira.

BIG friendly giant Jay Laga'aia has been eliminated from I'm A Celeb

Carson Kressley brings 'camp' to I'm a Celebrity jungle

"I am not all Park Avenue and daffodils” ... Carson Kressley.

Meet the "campest” campmate to star on I'm a Celebrity.

Star Wars: The Last Jedi mystery already solved

FILE- This undated file photo provided by Disney shows Daisey Ridley as Rey, left, and John Boyega as Finn, in a scene from the film, \"Star Wars: The Force Awakens.\" Hasbro said it is changing its Star Wars Monopoly set after an 8-year-old girl became upset that Rey, the movie's female heroine, was not included as a figure along with Darth Vader and Kylo Ren. (Disney/Lucasfilm via AP, File) MANDATORY CREDIT

A key mystery surrounding the title of episode eight has been solved

Kids' game "full of f**king paedophiles" according to dad

A mortified dad has expressed serious concerns over an online game

Lisa Marie Presley's ex caught with child pics: court

Lisa Marie Presley, at right, and her husband, Michael Lockwood back in 2010. FILE

Lisa Marie, 49, claimed she was left “sick to her stomach”

Robert Irwin introduces Jimmy Fallon to wild guests

Robert Irwin introduces Tonight Show host Jimmy Fallon to a cuddly sloth.

ROBERT Irwin continues Steve's legacy.

Get Moo-ving to Mooball

The old Pacific Highway and Murwillumbah railway line cut a parrallel path throughThe thriving village of Mooball , looking North East towards Murwillumbah and Mount Warning.

An expansion plan has been approved.

What $11.9m can get you on Coast's most exclusive street

29-31 Wyuna Drive Noosaville Qld 4566

This is what a cool $11.9m can get you

How a first home buyer built house with no deposit

NEARLY THERE: Construction on the first house to home orphans at Umoja began in January.



Photo Contributed

His home will be completed later this year.

Luxurious living in Tweed

1/27 Charles St, Tweed Heads

Check out this week's feature property.

Just a lazy $2.9 million, this hideaway could be yours

Fancy a rainforest hideaway?

“We figured we wanted to spend more time outside."

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!