An update of the George Dibbern web site was long overdue. Coincidentally with the move to modernize came the fantastic news that Bruny Island Coastal Retreats in Tasmania, Australia, along with a group of wooden boat and local history enthusiasts, had bought Dibbern’s ketch, Te Rapunga with the intention of restoring her. The project is seen as a way of keeping alive Dibbern’s still relevant and inspiring philosophy of the sea as well as the disappearing art of wooden boat building.
I say “fantastic” news as it has always been a fantasy of mine to see the languishing boat rescued from her seemingly hopeless state of disrepair. The BICR team have generously provided technical support in the reconstruction of the georgedibbern.com web site which I will continue to administer with the exception of one page. Being close to the scene and having the expertise, the BICR team will be responsible for the Restoration page, where they will report on progress and post photos as Denman Marine in Kettering, Tasmania, carry out the daunting but inspiring task of bringing Te Rapunga back to life.
It’s been five years since the last – which is indeed the last – newsletter was sent out. Amazingly, however, the George Story has not fizzled and every time I think “this is it” some new information or a new contact or vision comes to light. Over the years I have collected many bits that were being saved for Newsletter #14. However, since emailing a newsletter is cumbersome and edresses change, I have switched to a blog format. In the blog I will add those additional pieces of information as well as new findings, and draw attention to updates to be found on the Restoration page.