Wednesday 26th July 2023
Aubrey Sherwood Room, Royal Freshwater Bay Yacht Club
1900 hrs for 1930 start
Our speaker for the evening is Gerry McGann who will present:
Ferry Wars of the 1960’s:
Gerry McGann grew up in Perth and in 1947, before Gerry was born, his father went to buy a dinghy for the two older boys and came home with a destroyer escort! Gerry’s father converted it to the first fast ferry to operate on the Rottnest run. This ship was one of 35 ‘B Class Fairmiles’ built in Australia. There was over 600 of these tough little wooden ships built worldwide during the war, in prefab methods more akin to ship building today. Gerry will talk a little about the Fairmile’s role in the war, including the famous raid on St Nazaire.
Back to Perth, the monopoly of the 50’s was broken with other ships entering the Rottnest run, with various bits of skulduggery…bodies in the river, ships colliding, attempted sinkings, royal commissions…a great story on our doorstep when Perth was younger.
Gerry McGann is a Petroleum Geologist. In a career spanning more than 50 years, he has worked and lived on all five continents and discovered and produced oil worth several billion dollars. He was awarded the Order of Australia Medal in 2023 for service to the community in a variety of roles.